I am applying Blend into two different object in Illustrator. One with 100% opacity and another one with 50%.

I want the blend to be smoothly spread out. but when I select them both and click "blend' (make) it only creates three shades of circles. I want it to be at least 10 shades and evenly spaced.

I dnt understand why it is only producing three but not 10 or more. I picked blend, smooth color option.

Please help.

enter image description here

2 Answers 2


Illustrator's Blend defaults to Smooth Color even if the objects being blended can't use Smooth Color in an expected manner. There are some things the Smooth Color option doesn't see well, transparency can be one of them (since it's not actually color).

Merely choose Object > Blend > Blend Options. Switch to Specified Steps and increase the number of steps until you are happy.

enter image description here

  • Awww.. Thank you so much Scott. Nov 23, 2021 at 18:36
  • Realize merely using a radial gradient in this instance would make the artwork less complex, if that matters.
    – Scott
    Nov 23, 2021 at 18:43
  • can you please check the newly attached image? Why am getting this weird box around my blur? Thank you. Nov 23, 2021 at 19:08
  • Yes, yes Radial Gradient should have been the first choice in this case. Nov 23, 2021 at 19:09
  • @NeverLookBack please ask a new question. Why Illustrator does this is a more complex answer than a comment can provide.
    – Scott
    Nov 23, 2021 at 21:08

Because the colors you're blending are the same, using the Smooth Color option will produce only 1 step between the 2 objects.

From Adobe

Smooth Color Lets Illustrator auto-calculate the number of steps for the blends. If objects are filled or stroked with different colors, the steps are calculated to provide the optimum number of steps for a smooth color transition. If the objects contain identical colors, or if they contain gradients or patterns, the number of steps is based on the longest distance between the bounding box edges of the two objects.


If you want additional steps, then Specified Steps would be the best blend option.

Example of using Specified Steps

If you want the circles to show the overlapping opacity, expand the blend and ungroup the selection of circles.

  • Hello, Thank you. but I want the transition between Two white shades.. From deep to Transparent/ semi transparent. Nov 23, 2021 at 17:11
  • @NeverLookBack You can do that with Specified Steps, I have added a screenshot to my answer.
    – AndrewH
    Nov 23, 2021 at 18:29
  • Tank you so much <3 Nov 23, 2021 at 18:35

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