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Apply Effects on No Fill, No Stroke

Community Beginner ,
May 02, 2017

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Hi all,

I would like to have just the effects only applied to a shape/path i.e. no fill and no stroke. We can do that in photoshop but I've not figured out how to do it in Illustrator

e.g. a Rectangle shape that only has drop shadow/inner glow.  How can we achieve it?

I found a work around. (I'm on a Mac with CC 2018)

1. Create any path shape. (rectangle, ellipse, free form)

2. Fill the shape with a gradient fill and no stroke

3. Set both gradient colors to opacity: 0%, but keep the fill opacity at 100%

3. Group the single object

4. Apply the effect to the Group (not the shape).

You can put as many shapes as you want in the group, they will all get the effect. It worked for me using inner glow, outer glow, and drop shadow.

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Apply Effects on No Fill, No Stroke

Community Beginner ,
May 02, 2017

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Hi all,

I would like to have just the effects only applied to a shape/path i.e. no fill and no stroke. We can do that in photoshop but I've not figured out how to do it in Illustrator

e.g. a Rectangle shape that only has drop shadow/inner glow.  How can we achieve it?

I found a work around. (I'm on a Mac with CC 2018)

1. Create any path shape. (rectangle, ellipse, free form)

2. Fill the shape with a gradient fill and no stroke

3. Set both gradient colors to opacity: 0%, but keep the fill opacity at 100%

3. Group the single object

4. Apply the effect to the Group (not the shape).

You can put as many shapes as you want in the group, they will all get the effect. It worked for me using inner glow, outer glow, and drop shadow.

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May 02, 2017 2
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 02, 2017

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For the most part you can't. AI simply works differently and doesn't know these blending tricks. Feel free to experiment with the transparency and appearance options.

Mylenium

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May 02, 2017 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 03, 2017

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depends what you want... you can sort-of do something similar by having two fills, the top one with 0% opacity, apply knockout group, then give a drop shadow to the lower fill:

nofill.png

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May 03, 2017 4
Community Beginner ,
May 24, 2017

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Hey Doug,

That's some creative workaround there, a 'Why didn't I think of that' eureka moment!

I've used Knockout on groups of objects but never as a stacked Fill this way. Thanks for the creative tip.

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May 24, 2017 0
Contributor ,
Feb 20, 2020

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Thanks so much for posting this!

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Feb 20, 2020 0
Participant ,
Jun 30, 2020

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Great idea too! Thanks Doug.

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Jun 30, 2020 0
Explorer ,
Dec 19, 2017

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I found a work around. (I'm on a Mac with CC 2018)

1. Create any path shape. (rectangle, ellipse, free form)

2. Fill the shape with a gradient fill and no stroke

3. Set both gradient colors to opacity: 0%, but keep the fill opacity at 100%

3. Group the single object

4. Apply the effect to the Group (not the shape).

You can put as many shapes as you want in the group, they will all get the effect. It worked for me using inner glow, outer glow, and drop shadow.

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Dec 19, 2017 3
New Here ,
Sep 26, 2019

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This was perfect. Thanks!

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Sep 26, 2019 0
Participant ,
Jun 30, 2020

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Excellent suggestion Janduza. Thanks. I wonder why this feature, as described by the original poster, is not part of Illustrator's standard functionality. At present, whether a fill or stroke is made invisible OR is visible with a fill or stroke set to "None" produces the same result. I would expect the effect applied to a visible fill or a visible stroke set to "None" to produce the same result as the workaround, as a standard functionality (it is not the case, unfortunately).

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Jun 30, 2020 0
New Here ,
Mar 15, 2020

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You're a genius! Simple solution that never came to my mind.. Thanks

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Mar 15, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 01, 2020

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Wow. Genuinely clever. Many thanks. I think Adobe owe you for this one.

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Oct 01, 2020 0