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I've created a layered PDF with java and when I tried to open it in Illustrator I figured out that Illustrator does not use these layers. They are there in Acrobat and Indesign, but Illustrator flattens all layers to one clipping path.

Is there a way to keep those PDF layers when you open it with Illustrator? Or maybe a way to convert it?

  • 2
    If it is merely a clipping mask in Illustrator, all the layers will be inside the clipping mask. – Scott Nov 12 '19 at 19:05
  • @Scott, thanks I'd checked that. It only has layers called <path> inside. The stroke and filling are on separate layers. So no named layers. – Tim Nov 12 '19 at 20:01
  • Are you seeking to retain layer names or merely the layers? Strokes and fills are applied to paths in Illustrator. They can't be "separate layers". – Scott Nov 14 '19 at 4:34
  • @Scott, I'm getting the feeling I'll have to look for a step before exporting the PDF. I'm generating it in Java. Opening a PDF from Indesign on the other hand, gives me the result you describe. But not from my Java exported PDF. – Tim Nov 15 '19 at 7:37
  • It sounds like the issue may be with the java library you're using - I'm not sure an extra step would help. Try researching alternate PDF libraries. – superluminal Nov 19 '19 at 20:55

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