Import Illustrator / AI
Import Illustrator file with options to select layers and/or artboards.
This would increase ease of use and workflow, so a user is not always switching between apps.
I’m happy to announce that with version 13 you can natively open Illustrator files in XD. Layers, artboards, effects, symbols and artwork are preserved, editable and at the best visual fidelity.
To open an Illustrator file in XD, do one of the following:
- In XD, select File > Open. Navigate to the required folder, select an .ai file, and open in XD. You can also use the Cmd+O (Mac), or Ctrl+O (Windows) keyboard shortcuts.
- Drag the Ai file over the XD icon (on Mac only).
- Right-click the Illustrator file and select Open with > XD from the sub menu.
Here’s a list of what’s supported and not supported at this time: https://helpx.adobe.com/xd/kb/open-illustrator-files-in-xd.html
We’re also working on adding the same transfer fidelity for copy & paste from Ai workflow, so keep an eye on our next releases.
Thanks for voting this feature and let us know how it works!
Cody King commented
Seriously, please make this work ASAP... and not only with the garbage CC suite AI, with CS 5 & 6
Scott Ketterer commented
Great product and team! Please consider focusing on importing vectors over recreating drawing tools. I already have an amazing design creation tool in Illustrator as well as considerable knowledge.
XDs value add is turning the thousands of Illustrator files I already have into prototypes, please put your effort there.
I have an amazing skillset in Illustrator, please help me extend that into prototypes rather than recreating tools I already have. (tools that are much better and fully developed than anything XD has)
I will give my business to whatever tool helps me reuse the artwork I already have, I really don't need another drawing program, that is not what XD offers. Help me get my artwork into your tool and into a prototype as quickly as possible - then you really have something that will let me be a super star to my clients.
Samuel Mente commented
I dont know if there's a request especially for that, but I would love to be able to embed AI files into XD in a way it is possible in InDesign. When I import an icon and later decide to change something about its appearance I just have to edit the AI file and update the document.
Thats especially usefull if you have used the icon multiple times as you otherwise might have to switch out a lot of objects in large projects.
Giacomo Ardesi commented
Vivek, just copy and paste! It works flawlessly.
I Have base layout designed in Illustrator. I am making interactive prototype in XD, Sadly I cannot import entire design in. Primarily Text import doesn't work.
This means I have to re create the design in XD.
Considering the fact that tools in XD is far more limited, this is not a nice work flow experience.
It will be nice if the illustrator imports are flawless.|
Patrick Jean commented
I love what you guys are doing here and it is going in the right direction. What seems to be clearly missing is a path from existing adobe products, especially the vector based ones, such as Illustrator. Illustrator & Photoshop already support artboards & it would be a waste not being able to import those files and start using XD. Instead existing work will have to be rebuilt making it difficult to convert to a new tool.
Carolyn Tonkin commented
I had all my wireframes worked up in Illustrator and imported them into XD, but I ended up recreating the wireframes and importing symbols and other elements into the file.
I was assuming that XD would be an extension of Illustrator, however I can understand from a users perspective it's a simple tool to work up an app design if you had minimal knowledge of Adobe products.
Adminjoan_lafferty (Admin, Adobe) commented
Copy/Paste from Illustrator should be better in the April release. We are adding the ability to bring images and drop shadows over to XD (which is not happening in this preview build). In addition, thanks to feedback from vijay.portfolio and others, we are now working on making symbols work, as well.
I just don't see why these two programs are not inherently linked.
I design using illustrator as a preferred Layout tool but then copying and pasting is double handling artwork. Shouldn't be required. I'm better off with current workflow in export files to a folder where its delivered to an Invision project where I can then add interactivity.
Import or prepare Illustrator file for XD which then as others have mentioned here links back to illustrator.
The use case has to be removing the double handling of artwork between the programs.
I've imported Illustrator artwork into XD and I have to say, I don't need or want the layers, I'm quite happy with the simplification once in the XD environment. If I do need to do more complex line work, I'm happy to jump back out into Illustrator.
I think the hang-up for me is that I'm designing a layout twice. The first time in Illustrator with a set of artboards, and then copying and pasting that layout into XD because it lacks the fine controls for type, alignment, gradients, symbols, etc.
I would echo the requests for a linked artboard experience, similar to what InVision and Proto.io do with photoshop and sketch files. Syncing layers and artboards straight from Illustrator to XD would go a long way.
I would like to give my two cents about the lack of integration with Illustrator. I have all of my companies apps built in illustrator, and I want to be able to use the feature that make Adobe XD a great prototyping tool with my already created Illustrator files.
I have tried to copy and paste them into the XD file and the elements that I have copied in do not react like they should. I lose the ability to edit like as if I created these files in XD. I cannot go back and recreate all the files that make up our app in XD that would be a huge time and money waster for my company. Thus, I cannot use XD unless it will support illustrator imports.
Jonathan Mello commented
I was really hoping the creative cloud integration would work. and am disappointed that it is not planned to work at all like other members of the family, ie after effects.
Here's how I use Adobe tools for UX.
• The entire end-to-end experience is designed in Illustrator. This typically results in 50+ artboards per project. I use many of Illustrator's native features (Type, Color, Symbols, Appearance, Alignment, 3D, Effects, etc.) in this process. I also use Astute Graphics plugins to make my life easier.
• I use InDesign to publish my UX spec. It can link to AI artboards and show both the design and then the layer with the spec annotations.
• I prep aspects of my AI file for import into After Effects for prototyping.
• I was hoping that with Comet, I can make the design authored in AI interactive. Since that is not possible, I've for now figured out some cumbersome ways (AI Actions to expand all artwork, SVG Import into XD) to work around this limitation.
Coming from Adobe, I really expected tight integration with AI and PS. If this was someone else's product, the feature sets you currently have are great. I wouldn't be asking Sketch or Invision for this level of AI compatibility. From your use case, it seems like you are targeting users who want to design the experience in XD and use AI and PS as secondary tools to support that process. This isn't a workflow I want to work with.
If there are others who have a similar workflow, please up-vote this feature.
Peter DiBartolo commented
Depending on UX design fidelity or project need, I tend to design in Photoshop or Illustrator. For me this is not as important as Photoshop import. However, pasting anything should provide a link back to the original (beyond design libraries)
Adminjoan_lafferty (Admin, Adobe) commented
Right now, you can copy and paste vectors from Illustrator to Adobe XD. We found that most people wanted to bring in icons and illustrations from Illustrator and not entire designs and therefore we are optimizing for this use case.
If you need your full design with artboards imported, please describe a bit more about your use case.
Copy/paste of AI artwork fails in the following cases (which are an integral part of all my files).
• Symbols don't even appear in the file.
• More than basic text styles are not honored (e.g. All Caps, Text on Path, etc.)
• Layout is messed up even if I paste the artwork as one group
• Advanced appearance attributes are not honored (for e.g. Convert to Shape).
Would love the following feature:
• Linked artboards: I should be able to link a specific artboard in AI to an artboard in XD, which thereby is auto-updated as I make changes to the AI file.
• Selecting groups as defined in AI: It's nice to have Opt+Click to direct select individual objects. But I need a way to select groups that have already been defined in AI. For e.g., I might create a search box with placeholder text and an icon. I would group these objects in AI and would expect to be able to simply select this object and add interactivity.