How to Import New Textures Into Illustrator

By Naomi Bolton

Applying a texture to an image in Adobe Illustrator creates the illusion of depth and makes even a flat image stand out more. The texturizer effect enables you to easily apply textures to any image, but it comes with a limited selection of textures. Illustrator shares the texturizer effect with another Adobe program, Photoshop, so it is possible to import new textures, provided the image files are in the native PSD format. New textures in the correct format are available online, or you can create them yourself if you own Photoshop.

Download the new textures that you want to import into Adobe Illustrator and save them to your computer. Textures must be in the "PSD" format, so either download the files in the correct format from sites such as FREEPSDFiles (link in Resources), or download free texture files from sites such as texturemate and psdGraphics (links in Resources) and use Photoshop to convert them to the correct format. Save the texture file with a descriptive name, as this is what it will be listed as once you import it to Illustrator.

Launch Adobe Illustrator and select "Open" from the splash screen to open a file to which you want to apply the new texture. Alternatively select a suitable format from the "Create New" section.

Click the selection tool from the toolbox and then click the image to which you want to apply the new texture.

Click "Effect" from the file menu and then click "Texture." Select "Texturizer..." from the drop-down list.

Click the button next to the name of the texture on the right of the screen and select "Load Texture" from the list of options.

Select the new texture that you want to import using the file browser and then click "Open." Use the scaling and relief sliders to adjust the texture while watching the image preview on the right until you are satisfied with the results.

Click "OK" to apply the new texture. The imported texture is available from the "Texture" drop-down menu on the Texturizer screen if you wish to use it again in the future.