Draw a One-Stroke Heart in Illustrator

February is the month of love and June is for weddings – both times when you might want to draw a heart. Rather than drawing hearts in Illustrator using a circle, converting points and using adjustment handles to get it just right. Here's a fast, easy way to get a perfect heart every time using the pen tool and one three-click stroke.

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Getting Started

Choosing the Options
Choosing the Options. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Go to View > Show Grid, then to View > Snap to Grid. Set a stroke color, but no fill color. Choose the Pen tool in the tool box and use the default options shown there.

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Drawing the Stroke

Drawing the Stroke
Click, Click, Click!. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Draw a shape like this using the pen tool and the grid to guide you. Click once at point 1, point 2, then point 3.

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Changing the Stroke Size

Using the Stroke Panel
Using the Stroke Panel. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Increase the stroke size in the Stroke panel until you see what looks like a square rotated 45 degrees with a small piece missing from the top corner. You'll need an 80 point stroke to draw a heart half this size. Adjust your stroke size as necessary. 

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Setting Caps and Corners

Setting Caps and Corners
Change the cap and corner options to create the heart shape. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Change the cap style to Round Cap – the middle option – in the Stroke panel. If your heart's lower point doesn't look like this, set the Corner Style to the first option, Miter Join. And there you have it -- an almost instant heart! Now we'll change the color. 

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Changing the Heart Color

Changing the Heart Color
Change the heart's color or fill with your choice of color, pattern, or gradient. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

You can use any of the stroke options to change the color because the heart is a stroke. Change to a color other than black using the Swatches or Color Picker, or choose a stroke pattern or gradient from the Swatch panel.

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Converting the Heart Stroke to a Filled Shape

Converting the Heart Stroke to a Filled Shape
It's easy to convert the heart to a conventional filled shape. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Converting the heart to a traditional shape with a stroke and fill is easy, too. Just go to Object > Expand. Check Fill and Stroke and click OK. After you click OK, you'll no longer see the stroke when the heart is selected. 

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Editing the Heart Shape

Editing the Heart Shape
Add strokes and fills to make your heart one of a kind. Text and images © Sara Froehlich

Use the Stroke and Brushes panels to set stroke and brush options, and the Swatches panel to set fill options for gradients, patterns or solid colors.

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More Tips

Here are a few more tips if you want to get even more creative in Illustrator. 

Related: Using Patterns in Illustrator

Related: Using Graphic Styles in Illustrator

Related: Making Party Invitations in Illustrator 

Related: Make a Celtic Knot Border in Illustrator

Related: The Transform Each Command in Illustrator

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Your Citation
Froehlich, Sara. "Draw a One-Stroke Heart in Illustrator." ThoughtCo, Jan. 17, 2018, thoughtco.com/one-stroke-heart-in-illustrator-1701858. Froehlich, Sara. (2018, January 17). Draw a One-Stroke Heart in Illustrator. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/one-stroke-heart-in-illustrator-1701858 Froehlich, Sara. "Draw a One-Stroke Heart in Illustrator." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/one-stroke-heart-in-illustrator-1701858 (accessed January 21, 2018).