Proper alignment and distribution of objects are crucial for creating balanced and harmonious designs. Adobe Illustrator offers a comprehensive set of tools in the Align panel to help designers achieve precise positioning of elements. This guide will walk you through the steps to align and distribute objects in Illustrator effectively.

Creating Basic Objects for Alignment:

  1. Draw an Object: Start by creating a basic shape, such as a square, using the Rectangle Tool or any other shape tool of your choice.
  2. Duplicate the Object: To practice alignment, you’ll need multiple objects. Duplicate your initial shape by copying and pasting or using the Alt+Drag method.

Accessing the Align Panel:

  1. Open the Align Panel: Navigate to ‘Window’ in the top menu and select ‘Align’ or use the shortcut Shift+F7.
  2. Expand Options: In the Align panel, click on ‘Show Options’ to view all available alignment and distribution tools.
  3. Dock the Panel: For easy access, dock the Align panel to the right side of your workspace. This ensures it’s always available when you need it.

Aligning Objects:

  1. Select Objects: Click and drag to select the objects you want to align.
  2. Choose Alignment Type: In the Align panel, choose the desired alignment type. Options include aligning to the left, center, right, top, middle, or bottom.
  3. Align to Artboard: If you want to align objects relative to the artboard, select ‘Align to Artboard’ in the Align panel. This is especially useful when centering elements on your canvas.

Distributing Objects Evenly:

  1. Select Objects: Ensure all objects you want to distribute are selected.
  2. Choose Distribution Type: In the Align panel, select the type of distribution you want. Options include distributing horizontally or vertically.
  3. Distribute Spacing: To ensure even spacing between objects, use the ‘Distribute Spacing’ option. This ensures that the space between each object is consistent.


Alignment and distribution are fundamental design principles that can make or break a design. With Adobe Illustrator’s Align panel, achieving perfect positioning is a breeze. Whether you’re working on complex illustrations or simple designs, these tools ensure your elements are placed with precision.