5 Ways to Reduce Adobe Illustrator File Size

Bhuvan Verma | 27th June 2018

Large files can significantly slow down your workflow. Editing, zooming and then just saving the file may take several minutes. In addition to this, large file sizes are often the reason for application crashes that result in the loss of all or part of the work. Also the autosaving feature will help you in avoiding such losses, but does not eliminate the loss of time during the next saving of a large file. Therefore it is very important to reduce the file size for ease of use with the minimum of delay. In this article, you will be learning about 5 ways of minimizing the source vector file.

1. Save Options

When we save any file for the very first time (File > Save… or File > Save As…) this opens up Illustrator’s Options dialogue box. To reduce the file size significantly, uncheck the Create PDF Compatible File and check the Use Compression. Such selection of options would largely reduce the file size. I also performed an experiment on a complex vector artwork Shield and Sword.
Using the Create PDF Compatible File option may be required in some areas of design. Try to select it during the last save (File > Save As…) when the work will be completely ready. Also, Creating the PDF Compatible File option will help you recover Illustrator files after a crash.

2. Reducing the Resolution of Raster Effects

The resolution of all raster effects can be reduced. To do this, go to (Effect > Document Raster Effects Settings) and set a low value for the resolution in the dialogue box.

3. Removing excess points

The size of your file also depends on the number of anchor points. To reduce the number we can use the native Illustrator’s feature – Simplify (Object > Path > Simplify…). When there is no need to maintain the shape of objects my opinion would be this feature because it is good to use for rough processing of the paths, for reducing the number of points of vector textures.

4. Cropping of Unneeded Embedded Image Data

In cases where we still need to use Embedded Images, we can delete an unneeded part of an image using Rasterino. If there are transparent or white pixels in the image background, then we can remove them by using the Trim Image button in the Rasterino panel (Window > Rasterino > Rasterino panel). After selecting the desired options in the dialog box, It will delete the parts of an image that has no significant role to play.

5. Using Linked Images

Your artwork may also contain some raster images, along with the vector objects. You can place them in the document or they can be the result of certain processes. There are mainly two types of raster graphic in your Illustrator document those are either Linked Images or Embedded Images. linking image feature can significantly reduce the size of the file, especially when dealing with large images of high resolution.

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Bhuvan Verma

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