Create Lost and Cute Vector Teddy in Adobe Illustrator CS6


Difficulty: Beginner/Intermediate

Platform Used: Adobe Illustrator CS6

Estimated Completion Time: 1+ hours


Today we'll be creating a cute vector illustrated and lost teddy using Adobe Illustrator :). I'm feeling quite excited as this is my first tutorial ever made. Immedietaly I would like to apologize for any imperfections it may have. Feel free to use source files in any way you wish. Let's begin :)



We'll begin by creating new document with the size of A3 paper. After doing that with the help of rectangle tool (m) we'll draw a background of the entire landscape. We'll set up the fill to default and go immedietaly to the Gradient window. We'll set the gradient to Radial type. Aspect ratio and angle can be left default. We want to have 6 gradient sliders so it means we need to create 4 more (as default number is 2). We'll choose the following hexadecimal color values for our sliders : #009CBF, #007D94, #008CBF, #0081BF, #005A7F, #004555 (Left to right direction).

Our next step will include adding the grungy texture on top of our background. I've used 'Fibrous Brown Paper 4096 x 3112' texture from a pack of Photoshop textures (You can download it separately here). Use aligning tool to align vertically and horizontally our texture then using Selection Tool (v) drag the anchor points with alt key pressed and stretch it accordingly to fit our canvas. Reduce the opacity of our texture to 45%.

Create new layer and call it 'ground'. Use Elipse tool (L) to draw a tilted oval shape. Add a radial gradient to it. Include 4 more gradient sliders and attach that lightly darker green'ish color to all of them. Have fun with the shades of your color. I suggest you set up lighter shade of green in the middle of our oval shape then go slightly darker with each next gradient slider.


Go to effects > stylize > Drop shadow and add a shadow to our oval shape.


Copy the 'ground' layer and send underneath our oval shape. Use down arrow key to move it a couple of pixels down from it's parent shape. Choose both shapes and hit CTRL + G to group them.


Let's leave our landscape for a moment and focus on creating moon.


Create a 150 x 150 px white circle by using Elipse Tool (L). Give it a color of #E5E0C7 and position it somewhere on the top-left side of our canvas. My coordinates are x = 197 and y = 117.


Add a shadow


use pen tool to draw shapes inside our moon. Fill those shapes with slightly darker shade of our previous color. I think #DDD7BC will be fine.


Add some more 'wrinkles' to our moon and use direct selection tool (A) to tweak some of their handles. You can also use convert anchor point tool (SHIFT + C) to tweak the handles separately. Create asymetric shapes and place them properly on the moon

When you're done, select all shapes with direct selection tool (A) and hit CTRL - G to group them. Remember to not miss any of them while selecting.



Time to get our hands dirty and plant some trees :). Grab your shovel - the pen tool (P) and begin drawing a triangular shape. After you finish, switch to convert anchor points tool (SHIFT + C) and tweak one of the bottom handles and one of the upper ones to create that little oval shape. Don't go too far as well as don't be too symmetrical, it's a tree :).


Give our tree a fill of #75614B and go to effects > stylize > drop shadow to add shadow behind it.


Select our tree trunk and copy it 4 times, giving our forest a number of 5 trees. Tweak some of them in terms of size and position them in simillar way like I did.


We need to construct rest of the tree. We'll begin by going to polygon tool, pressing SHIFT and creating a polygon. Give it a fill of #999B65. Then select delete anchor point tool (-) and delete 3 of 6 anchor points like that we have a triangle


Go to selection tool (V) and then to transform. Place a value of -90 degrees in rotation field and hit enter.


Copy our triangle and paste in front twice using CTRL + F. Select one of the triangles and move up. Select another one and move to the middle. Resize all three so they form a tree shape


Using direct selection tool (A) select all three shapes then toggle pathfinder on and click 'unite'.


'Finish 'im' with the good ol' effects > stylize > round corner. Give it a radius of 8px and click apply.


Switch to convert anchor points tool (SHIFT + C) and create a handle to one of the bottom anchor points. After doing that tweak it down so it shapes a nice oval shape. A good idea is to help yourself by placing a guide in the middle of our green shape. To do that, simply toggle rulers on (CTRL + R) then click and drag a ruler from the ruler sidebar (left side of your screen). Manipulate the handle up and down while still having it on ruler.


Add a shadow (effects > stylize > drop shadow) and position the green shapes in the middle of tree trunks. You can help yourself in determining the dead center point by enabling smart guides.


It's time to make our teddy :). For the first couple of steps there will be no screenshots of the actual step being done because (oh bad) I've united some shapes that I have made and forgot to leave their copies for the sake of this article. You know how it is sometimes when we grab 4 things at the same time and try to be equally effective in all of them ;). Good news is that these steps are fairly easy to complete so enough talking...let's continue :).


Create New file. It can be A3 size. Draw a circle and tweak the bottom anchor point so the entire shape reminds more of a head. Use whatever brown fill you like, it doesn't matter for the moment. Drag and place a guide exactly in the center of the shape.

For the ears - draw smaller circle and position it on the left side of the bigger circle (teddy's head). Try to aim placing bottom anchor point of the smaller circle on the border of the bigger circle. Use reflect tool (O) and reflect vertically the ear shape. Remember to define a proper reference point by clicking left ALT key and clicking on center of our guide. Select all three shapes (ears and head) and go to pathfinder. Click 'unite' to combine all 3 shapes into one.


We'll now make eyes of the teddy. Again, don't worry about some united shapes that you can see on the screenshot, i've explained it earlier. We'll tidy them up in a moment :). So... create oval shape for eye, go to appearaence and add a fill of #2D2D2D then position the black shape on our guide so the guide is cutting our shape exactly in the middle. Go to transform and think about a constant value to move our shape in x axis. In my case it was -20 px.


Add a shadow and set it's values according to your taste. Use #595959 color for a delicate shadow.


Use elipse tool (L) and draw 3 oval shapes with various sizes. Set a fill of #C9C9C9. Select all four shapes and group them up (CTRL + G).


Use our main guide that goes through middle of our head as a reference point and reflect (O) vertically our eye. Upon reflection, select the reflected eye and reflect it vertically with the reference point set up on it's center.


For the nose create a triangle using the same method that we've used while creating tree and position it on our main guide (The one that goes through our head shape exactly in the middle). Place our triangle's center on the guide. Go to effect > stylize > rounded corners and give our triangle a 5 px rounded corners. I've ended up with a 63 x 38 px. shape.


Teddy's mouth will consist of three simple shapes. To craft it use segment tool (\), draw one line and duplicate it 3 times (Each time pasting on the front). Select two of them and go to transform. Rotate them both (-45 and 45 degrees). Click two rotated segments and go to pathfinder. Unite them and position under the nose of our teddy (aim center). Remember to work with guides and smart guides toggled on. It will be easier to precisely position shapes.


We'll now add some flavour to the ears of teddy and enhance them delicately. Grab the pen tool (P) and place 3 anchor points. Close the shape and grab convert anchor points tool (SHIFT + C). Create handles and manipulate them to create shape simillar to the one on the screenshot. You don't need to be that precise on the bottom of the shape as we'll add gradient as a fill for it and drastically reduce the opacity.


Add a gradient, set it's type to linear, angle to 135 degrees and colors to #918162 - #73664E. Reduce opacity of the whole object to 30%.

Select the shape and use reflect tool to reflect it vertically. Press ALT key and set up reference point on our main guide. Click 'copy'.

Group all elements.


To draw arm use line segment tool (\) and draw a line. Set brush definition to 15 pt. and oval. Go to object > expand appearance and click ok. Upon doing that go to transform > rotate and rotate the whole arm by -40 degrees. Position the arm that it touches borders of head then use reflect tool to flip it vertically, pretty much the same way like before.


To simplify the process of building the corpse, we'll just draw a a shape with the help of pen tool (P).


We're close to be finished. Just a couple of steps more and we'll call ourselves 'survivors' ;). Grab that old friend - the elipse tool (L) and draw a circle. Tweak the bottom anchor point of the oval circle to make it look more like a teddy feet (See screenshot for better explanation :) ).
like a teddy feet. Add a linear gradient with two gradient points. One with the color of #8C7D5F and another of #918162. Set the gradient slider (the little white dot on the middle) to around 37%.

Copy the feet and paste in front. Use selection tool to select the copied element and resize it down to around 3/4 of it's parent shape.

Add a linear gradient with the angle of 135 degrees and 3 gradient points. Use these colors or their simillar shades : #9C8A69, #B29F79 and #AB9873. First gradient point is set up to be at location 0% and gradient slider at 70%. Second gradient point is set up at 80% with a gradient slider at 87%. The last one is at 100%. After doing that, select both shapes and use CTRL + G to group them. Eventually just unite them if you think that there won't be a need in the future to edit some colors. Unfortunately I didn't plan to make a tutorial and have united these shapes which I regret cause this tutorial would be way richer with exact step-by-step guide for EXTREME beginners. Once again sorry for that.


Grab that naughty pen tool and draw yourself a link from feet to the corpse (commonly known as 'leg') then select both feet and leg. Upon selecting, reflect vertically both shapes. Reflect vertically the center of right feet with a reference point set up to it's center in order to maintain the so-called 'play of light'.

Create necessary links with pen tool from leg to leg. Use convert anchor point tool to do a convex bottom of our teddy. Set a gradient for it with angle of 90 degrees. You can use the same shade of brown color for the first gradient point and delicately accent the shape with a darker shade. To easily showcase all of the color shades I use


We're at the final stage of adding some last elements to our design. Those elemenets will be a t-shirt with a cute sign and blushes. To draw a shirt choose pen tool with the fill set up to #EAD2AC. Create a new layer which you'll call 't-shirt'. Start tracing the outlines of the teddy in order to create a shape. Correct on the run each points with convert anchor point tool. You can help yourself by disabling visibility of the two feets (to do that, simply click the eye icon in layers panel).


Add a shadow to our shirt so it stands out a little bit.

Create new sublayer to our 't-shirt' layer and call it 'take me home'. Use text tool (T) and choose 'Merit' font. Set the color to a brown'ish one :). Write 'take me' and 'home' and go to effects > distort & transform > pucker & bloat to stylize the 'take me' part. Set up values as shown below:


Go to Effect > warp > Fisheye and set up values as shown below:


Go to Effect > Warp > Bulge and set up it's values like below:


Go to Effect > Warp > Shell Lower and set it's values like below:


Reduce opacity to around 25% and go to effect > stylize > drop shadow. Use the image below as a reference :


'Home' will be stylized pretty much using the same technicques as 'Take me' part.


Add some blushes with the help of elipse tool. Set the fill color to #CC83C3 and reduce opacity to 20%. Use direct selection tool to tweak some of anchor points (especially bottom one and bottom right) then use convert anchor point tool to give it a good shape. Finally, reflect vertically the shape.

Finalizing the artwork


Select the entire teddy with direct selection tool and copy it. Remember to select all layers (if you had locks set up on any of them, it's good time to unlock them now :) ). Paste the teddy in our artwork then hit CTRL + G to make a group of layers of it. Rename the group to 'Teddy' in your layer panel.


Click the teddy group and use selection tool to resize it. Hold SHIFT and ALT key pressed while resizing. I've ended up with an image of 128 x 160 px :). Place our teddy nearly in the center of the green landscape. Save your work and be proud of yourself ! You've just finished !


Final Quack

Wow that was one big trip for you here dear apprentice. I know that this tutorial isn't perfect but I hope that you've learned quite much today. Especially when it comes to creating something nice lookin' out of simple shapes. You may have learned some new shortcuts and quick methods to operate in Adobe Illustrator. As you probably noticed, some of these methods can be easily applied to your future logo design, artwork design, illustration design or any other type of project. I wish you many great moments with Adobe Ai and a lot of satisfaction out of your work.

Where to find top Adobe Illustrator tutorials ?


Many of us scratched our head during the stage of endless learning. Adobe Illustrator is not different. To master it you require both good teacher and patience. But what if you don't have a teacher nearby or you want to learn everything on our own ? Sure there is a solution ! In the age of internet, activities such as playing guitar, cooking, , and designing are a lot easier to learn thanks to 'Tutorials'.

What is a tutorial ? Simply it's a step-by-step guide on how to do a particular thing from scratch. Treat it as a crash course. It's there to help you gain new skills and can have a shape of a video or just bunch of photos with descriptions. Tutorials can be offered for free or through paid membership. Opinions are divided to those who recommend signing up with a paid membership sites and those who state that all this knowledge is easily avaible on the internet.

Our opinion ? Well, if you have a lot of spare time and patience to do things by yourself, plus you are not in posession of huge cash resources in the beginning stage of your design experience then going with free tutorials would be your best shot. However, if designing is not your main job (currently ;) ) and you are limited by rigorous time frames then a paid membership site would be a good idea.

In today's post we'll focus on helping all those of you who fall within the first group of designers. Under this paragraph you'll find top sites offering quality Adobe Illustrator tutorials for free. Remember to check them often and practice as much as you can :).

1. VectorTuts

VectorTuts are part of NetTuts, a large group belonging to Envato. You may have heard about Envato before from their numerous websites offering templates, graphics, audio, video, etc. stuff. From time to time VectorTuts are being updated with fresh content. NetTuts is known for choosing only experienced designers. You won't find cheesy and out-of-logic practices in their tutorials which we write down as a benefit :).

2. Abuzeedo

Abuzeedo is a small blog maintained by Fabio Sasso. Since 2006, Abuzeedo is providing users with fresh design tips and tricks. You can find tutorials, freebies and useful advices. Link will transfer you directly to all content associated with Adobe Illustrator.

3. allows users to post links to their tutorials. It's a good place to learn Adobe Ai and eventually promote your website through posting a nice tutorial. Enough said :)

4. N.Design Studio

N.Design Studio is a personal portfolio and blog of NickLa - Toronto based web designer and illustrator. It's worth checking out from time to time.

5. MyInk Blog

MyINK Blog is a design resources and inspiration blog maintained by volunteer authors. Not as targeted on Adobe AI as others but still worth peeking from time to time :).

6. is a good source of Adobe Illustrator tutorials, quickfixes, tips and tricks. It was created by Rype (Ryan Putnam) of Rype Arts an exclusive vector art contributor to iStockphoto.

7. is a design company which delivers outstanding illustration, branding, graphic design, and web development to forward thinking organizations across the globe. They also maintain a medium size blog which offers some cool design tutorials from time to time. Tutorials come mostly from exclusive authors so it's worth checking out.

8. offers both free and premium tutorials and crash courses. Their premium membership is worth looking out as it costs silly $12 a year.

9. is perfect for anyone who begins his journey with Adobe Illustrator. Their tutorials will teach you how to operate with the Pen tool, trace, use symmetry mirroring and a few other helpful skills. The series of tutorials will create a base for learning more advanced things in the future. Definetly worth checking out !

10. Web Design Ledger maintained by Henry Jones is a design blog offering tutorials in broadly defined web design. From time to time you can fall on interesting Adobe Illustrator tutorials. Also, very often Henry is summing up one of the greatest tutorials of all time, month or year. Worth visiting for sure !


Nobody said that design is an easy piece of bread but constant increasement of our skills and proving it through a nicely made portfolio is the way to go. Remember to never give up. Begining is always hard and seeying it as an necessary evil is crucial to move forward. However, thanks to many authors even the most boring designs can be fun to do for a newbie. Use alerting system for the blogs mentioned above and practice every design possible.