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Need Help Setting up tiles in Illustrator


New Member
Does anyone know how to automatically set up tiles in Illustrator, with overlap in between them? (Like, say I have a large image and want to separate it into 6 different panels, with overlap in between each panel.) I know how to do it manually, by either using Pathfinder or a Clipping mask, but I have a BUNCH of graphics that I have to repeatedly do this to, so I was wondering if there was a faster method? I know that you can go to Print, and set it up in there with the "Tile Full Pages" option, however, I do not want to print it. I want a file that I can edit in Illustrator. I thought maybe I could set it up under Print and then click on "Save as PDF", and then just re-open it in Illustrator, but it wont give me the option to change my page size. Any ideas? Any programs that can automatically set up tiles, or maybe an Illustrator Script?

Thanks for any ideas/help.


New Member
+1 for overlapping art boards.
What I've done in the past is this: Start new AI PDF Document. No art at this stage. Set up overlapping art boards as needed that are just about the width of the media by a little longer than than project. For example 48" x 150". Save this doc, as you can use it again for other similar situations. Then PLACE the AI file within, that has the art for the current project. Save as COPY as PDF. Now you have a multi-page PDF to RIP/Print. Depending on the art, you may have to crop certain panels in the rip to prevent waste. Be conscious of your overlaps if this is the case.


New Member
I butt my artboards together and add document bleed for my overlap. Makes it a lot faster if I need to change the overlap for whatever reason.


New Member
Clipping masks and pathfinder tools are the wrong way to do this. Artboards are the way to do it, as others have mentioned.

Just draw a series of rectangles, sized and arranged exactly how you want the tiles to be, then select them all and go Object > Artboards > Convert to Artboards. Put your artwork on the artboards and save to PDF, which will create a separate page for each tile. Done.


It’s all about your print!
Just curious? Is there a reason you have to do this in illustrator? We would have the rip (Onyx) take care of tiling.