How to Rearrange Artboards in Adobe Illustrator

If you want to keep the artboards in exact order, you can go to the Artboards panel and click on the Rearrange All Artboards button in the bottom left corner. From there, you can choose all your settings, click OK and Illustrator will rearrange all the artboards for you. 

You can also use the Artboard tool: Select the Artboard tool from the toolbar, move artboards around to manually rearrange them. If your artboards are not showing in the correct order, you can rearrange them in the artboards panel as well.

My name is April, and I’ve been working in the graphic design field for 13+ years now. One of my passions is using in Adobe Illustrator to create vector graphics, text layouts, and multi-page designs.

Whether you are working with a one-page layout or a multi-page layout, you will need to use artboards, including rearranging or reordering the artboards.

Let’s see how it works!

Key Takeaways

  • The Artboards panel has the Rearrange All Artboards that quickly rearranges and organizes your artboards.
  • The Artboard tool lets you rearrange the artboards within the canvas.
  • The Artboards panel lets you manually rearrange artboards in a different order when printing or displaying in a PDF.

Note: The screenshots from this tutorial are taken from Adobe Illustrator CC Windows version. 

Method 1: Via Artboards Panel

The quickest way to arrange artboards in Adobe Illustrator is using the Artboards panel. Here are the steps.

Step 1: Open the Artboards panel from the overhead main menu Window > Artboards.

This is the Artboards panel. 

Note: In the artboards panel, if you are unsure which is which, double-click the space next to the name and it will bring that artboard in focus on your screen. 

As you can see, I have copied and pasted to get each of my artboards, so they are all named the same. If it was helpful to my workflow I could rename them all. I will do that by double clicking on the name, and typing in a new name. Hit enter when done. 

My canvas is very unorganized right now, as I have artboards all over the place. Thankfully Adobe provided us an easy way to rearrange them quickly. 

In the artboards panel, there is the Rearrange All Artboards button in the bottom left.

Step 2: Click Rearrange All Artboards, and a dialog box comes up. It lets you choose the way it will rearrange the artboards, the order, how many columns, and how much spacing, and even allows you to move or not move the artwork with the artboard. 

Once you have all the settings, click OK.

Now we have beautifully rearranged artboards that are easy to work with.

As we all know, sometimes clients change their minds. Maybe this customer decided they want the blue star on the first page and the red one last? 

With the Artboard panel, we can easily rearrange these. Simply click on that artboard in the list, and drag it to the position you want. You can also use the arrows at the bottom of the panel. I have now rearranged them in the panel.

Method 2: Using Artboard Tool

Sometimes designs just aren’t as orderly as above and there are reasons we choose to manually arrange artboards. This is where the Artboard Tool comes in handy.

Step 1: Navigate to the toolbar and find the Artboard Tool. 

Step 2: Click it and you will notice your cursor change as well as the edges of the artboards are highlighted.

Step 3: With this tool, you can simply click and drag the artboards to different arrangements.

Step 4: You can even use the Align panel tools to help align them. Using your Artboard tool, hold Shift and click on multiple artboards.

Step 5: Then click the Vertical Align Center button and now they are lined up.

Step 6: You can use this method of rearranging the physical artboards and still use the artboard panel to rearrange the actual page order of the document!

Final Thoughts

Artboards are essential to Illustrator and create design and layouts. Using the Artboards panel and the Artboard tool, you can keep your artboards nice and organized. Whether you want them perfectly spaced with the Align All Artboards button, or you want more control with the Artboard tool, Illustrator is sure to help you impress with an awesome layout!

Have you ever needed to rearrange artboards in Illustrator? What were you creating and was it for fun or work? Let me know in the comments below.

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