Want to “Erase” a shape to create a new design? In Adobe Illustrator, you can see different shapes are available, but every time we don’t want to use them. According to the requirements of the design, new shapes and styles of text are widely used.
So the best idea to give a new style to your shapes or text is by erasing a part. But if you get stuck while erasing in Illustrator, and don’t have any idea how to Erase, which tool is best and will work for you.
You can also learn:
If you don’t have any idea or you are new to Illustrator, then this tutorial is for you. In this tutorial, we are going to explain different methods to let you know How to Erase in Illustrator.
Table of Contents
3 Methods to Erase in Illustrator (Easiest Way)
The Eraser Tool and Knife Tool can work well for you to erase in the Illustrator. There are different methods for every type of object to erase. In this tutorial, you will learn different ways to erase different objects.
1st Method: Eraser Tool
Eraser Tool can be used to erase different shapes created in Illustrator and the Text. Text can’t be directly erased. To Erase Text with the Eraser Tool, you need to create Outlines first and then erase any part of the text.
How to Erase Part of a Shape in Illustrator
Shapes can be easily erased in Illustrator using the Eraser Tool. Just drag the Eraser over the shape and it erase. Let’s see a step-by-step guide.
Step 1: Here we are using a rectangular shape to erase.
Step 2: Select the Eraser Tool from the left toolbar.
Shortcut key for Eraser Tool in Illustrator
You can also use the keyboard shortcut key Shift+E from the keyboard to use the Eraser Tool.
Step 3: The Eraser Tool will be selected and the pointer will be converted to an eraser.
Step 4: Press and hold the right button from the mouse and drag the Eraser over the shape.
As you release, you will see that the shape will be divided into different parts, and the part from where you have dragged the Eraser Tool is erased. Just like we did here.
How to Erase Text in Illustrator
Create Outlines first to Erase text in Illustrator. Outlined text is easy to erase just like a shape.
Here is the text that we want to erase.
Step 1: Select the text using the Selection Tool.
Step 2: Right-click on the text and select Create Outlines.
You can also use the keyboard shortcut key Shift+Ctrl+O to Create Outlines.
The text is outlined now.
Step 3: Grab the Eraser Tool from the left toolbar.
You can also press Shift+E from the keyboard to use the Eraser Tool to Erase in Illustrator.
Step 4: Drag the Eraser Tool onto the text area where you want to erase.
As you can see, the part is erased now using the Eraser Tool.
2nd Method: Pen Tool
The pen tool makes an Anchor point and then Erases the part. Either you want to erase the selected part or the other part both can be done for shapes and images.
How to Erase Part of an Image in Illustrator
Step 1: Go to File > Place.
You can also press Shift+Ctrl+P to place an image.
Place panel will appear.
Step 2: Select the required image from its location and click Place.
Step 3: The image will appear with the pointer.
Step 4: Click anywhere on the artboard and the image will appear.
Step 5: Embed the image by Properties > Quick Actions > Embed.
Step 6: Resize the image according to your choice.
Step 7: Grab the Pen Tool from the left toolbar.
You can also press P from the keyboard to activate Pen Tool.
Step 8: Start making an anchor point on the area that you want to erase.
Step 9: The Anchor points are created.
Note: Make sure to join the start and end of the Anchor point by Pen Tool.
Step 10: Grab the Selection Tool from the left toolbar.
You can also press V on the keyboard to use the Selection Tool.
Step 11: Select the anchor points that you have created using the Pen Tool and the image with the help of the Selection Tool.
Now it depends on you whether you want to erase the outer part of the selected area or the inner part.
If you want to erase the outer part of the selected area, then Make Clipping Mask.
To Make Clipping Mask, right-click on the artboard and select Make Clipping Mask while you have selected the image and the anchor points that you created with the help of the Pen Tool.
Note: Otherwise, if you want to erase the selected area, then make the Compound path. To make Compound Path go to Object > Compound Path > Make.
The selected area is erased.
In the same way, you can use any shape to erase its inner or outer part by creating anchor points using the Pen Tool and then Make Clipping Mask or Compound Path.
3rd Method: Knife
The knife can be used to erase part of any shape or text.
Here we are using a polygon shape to erase using the Knife.
How to Delete Part of a Shape in Illustrator
Step 1: Go to the Edit Toolbar.
Select and drag the Knife to the toolbar.
If you have a knife already in your toolbar, then select it.
Step 2: The Knife is selected, and it converted the pointer to a knife, as you can see here.
Step 3: Press and hold the right button on the mouse and drag over the shape.
As you release, you can see that the shape will be divided into different parts.
Step 4: Grab the Selection Tool from the left toolbar or press V from the keyboard to use the Selection Tool.
Step 5: Unselect the shape by clicking anywhere on the artboard.
Step 6: Now bring the pointer onto the shape and select any part that you want to erase.
Step 7: Press Delete from the keyboard.
The selected part of the shape is erased.
The same method you can easily apply to the Text but make sure to Create Outlines first.
You have learned to Erase in Illustrator.
In this tutorial, you have learned different ways to erase in Illustrator. Now you can erase images, text, or any shape easily in your designs.
You can also watch the detailed video tutorial to learn How to Erase in Illustrator that is given at the start.
Have More Questions?
If you have any questions related to Erase in Illustrator, you can ask in the comment section below. We have also answered some most frequently asked questions as well.
How to Change Eraser Size in Illustrator
The shortcut key to change eraser size is  brackets. Press and Hold ] to make the eraser big and [ to make the eraser small in Illustrator.
All Done! Enjoy.