My client gave me a set of 13 icons to use in some print and web materials that I am designing for an event. They are simple one color icons with a sketchy kind of look, and the original file they gave me was an .ai. The problem is, any time I try to work with them, Illustrator moves really, really, really slowly. I click on the icons and it take a full 5 seconds to select them. I try to move them and it takes 15-20 seconds for Illustrator to register the move. This is making the design process unbearably frustrating. Any ideas on why Illustrator is struggling with them? What can I do to make it run faster? I have not had any other performance issues, so I'm sure it's the icons. I wouldn't use them, but my client specifically requested that I implement them in the designs.

Here are some of the icons:



"Sketchy" appearance may mean they have an ungodly amount of anchor points. That can, and often does, cause lags in AI. Not much you can do but simplify them.

Kind of impossible to be specific without sample images.

| improve this answer | |
  • I edited my post to include an image. Do you have a recommendation on how to simplify the icons? – mcography Feb 2 '18 at 5:47
  • Well, you could expand/pathfinder Merge. Might help. Object/Path/Simplify might help. Rasterize to high PPI .psd files and use those... there are many options. As "icons" those really are too detailed overall. It's difficult to know your client and what they are expecting - EXACT representation or overall "mood". – Scott Feb 2 '18 at 17:42

Illustrator has a tool to simplify complex objects; it can be found under

Object > Path > Simplify

You can fiddle with the options to get your desired result. If the problem is indeed the huge amount of anchor points, that should solve your problem.

Further information under: https://helpx.adobe.com/illustrator/using/editing-paths.html (further down the page there is a section on simplifying paths)

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.