I have a subscription in Freepik.com which let me download quality vector files in EPS format (sometimes also in AI format). Each file author in Freepik converts to AI/EPS in Adobe Illustrator with settings as they each please.

My problem comes when I try to open those files in Inkscape and the conversion yields to numerous groups inside groups inside groups… for a single graphic effect, for example, a clipping group which encapsulates a clipping group with a clipping group … for a rectangle with radial gradient and a thin lattice as overlay. I cannot attach an AI or EPS as example. I'm sorry.

I have tried both Poppler/Cairo or internal methods of conversion and the result is basically the same.

I have to say that I already ask Freepik people to force their authors to use the SVG compatibility flag in Illustrator, but that was like shouting to the wind…

So basically I want to know:

  1. How to improve the EPS to SVG conversion in Inkscape (or maybe other open source (Linux) software?)
  2. How to flatten or wisely ungroup an EPS from Freepik, if someone else had encountered a better solution to work with

(If you StackExchange gurus think I didn't properly phrased or described my question, please bear with me because I lack knowledge of many technical terms.)

1 Answer 1


Try Extension > Arrange > Deep Ungroup. Many of us have used this to simplify otherwise hopeless PDFs for edits when a PDF is the only available vector version of an image.

Ai files are often very similar to PDFs, so it's worth trying. It doesn't release redundant clipping paths, but they can be found as no fill, no stroke elements (select same) after releasing them.


On GD.SE there are old questions where someone has wanted to extract complex glowing objects (sun, stars, planets, galaxies etc...) from a purchased or otherwise acquired EPS image. I've had such problems myself. An example: https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/light-effects-collection_1015001.htm

Disassembly is practically impossible even with Illustrator because the objects are constructed in a way that they look right only together and against a black background. For example, there are group level blending modes and opacity masks, so ungrouping destroys colors immediately.

Disassembly in Inkscape resulted in this:

enter image description here

Unfortunately this caused Inkscape 1.0 portable to freeze.

I cannot prove it, but the artist may have intentionally created the artwork so that it can't be disassembled easily. Maybe it's not at all a bad thing to encourage people to refine their drawing skills instead of copying and pasting.

  • @Billy Kerr. It's now 200% easier to read even for me. Thanks again!
    – user82991
    Sep 21, 2020 at 10:25
  • @LobaLuna if it happens that my linked example (in its original form) contains glows that you wanted to have you should ask it. They are not especially difficult to construct from scratch in Inkscape. Disassembling them needs Illustrator and it's still a hard job.
    – user82991
    Sep 21, 2020 at 10:37
  • No problem! It was just a little tweak! Good answer by the way!
    – Billy Kerr
    Sep 21, 2020 at 11:03
  • Also I wholeheartedly agree with your last point. Creating artwork natively in Inkscape is often much easier than trying to fix something someone else created in other software. It's often not worth the trouble.
    – Billy Kerr
    Sep 21, 2020 at 11:12
  • @user287001 Learning to draw my personal assets is by far the best long-term solution. But sometimes I am against the clock and my boss is always in a hurry (something that I am not going to change, neither I am interested in). You are right about creating my own assets. Maybe that is what is missing: some advanced tutorials to create those nice looking effects that Freepik put on their designs. I have so many difficulties trying to to reproduce those effects, like this gorgeous background: freepik.es/vector-gratis/…
    – LobaLuna
    Sep 24, 2020 at 0:50

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