I was wondering if anybody knew how to stop two different paths from connecting when they meet at the same point in Illustrator while using the pen tool. It's quite the annoyance when they do it when you don't want them to.

The only way I know of avoiding the problem is making the other point then using the selection tool to drag it on top of the other separate point. Though with what I'm doing, that method would take forever.

Here's an example of what I want to stop:

enter image description here

2 Answers 2


Easiest method I use...

  • click for the second anchor away from the other path, while holding the click depress the Space bar and drag the click where you want it to be.

enter image description here

This will prevent the two paths from joining. You just have to click and move with the spacebar down. This is generally the fastest method since you don't need to lock or hide or isolate anything. It's all fluid in the drawing process once you get accustomed to it.

  • How would you do this if it's a new path and you want the first point to be on top of another point?
    – Eoin
    Commented Aug 14, 2018 at 12:43
  • @Eoin start drawing the path, click to initial the first anchor then while still holding the click down, depress the spacebar and move the anchor. -- Same processes, basically.
    – Scott
    Commented Aug 14, 2018 at 13:43
  • but I can't start drawing the path. If I click the first point it causes me the problem. I guess I can click elsewhere then move it.
    – Eoin
    Commented Aug 14, 2018 at 14:29
  • 1
    @Eoin -- Yes click elsewhere and move -- that's the entire point of this answer and my comment.
    – Scott
    Commented Aug 14, 2018 at 15:18

There's couple different ways to achieve this.

  1. Select and lock (Object > Lock > Selection, Ctrl / Option+2) or hide (Object > Hide > Selection, Ctrl / Option+3) the existing path before drawing the second. Locking may be more useful than hiding, allowing you to still align the last anchor exactly over the existing path.

  2. Start drawing your second path, but before placing the achor over the existing path, double-click the new path with the Move tool (V) to enter Isolation mode. Pick up drawing with the pen tool by clicking on the last anchor you placed.

  • there is a third option too let them connect. then afterwards select the segments with direct selection tool and hit ctrl-x then ctrl+f
    – joojaa
    Commented Aug 27, 2014 at 13:57
  • Ah, I see. I was wanting a method like "hold {key} when you click". I'm making a low-poly portrait and I was just wanting to make all the polygons separate lines because when it makes those really sharp corners you can't get rid of them. Unless you put the limit down, then it just takes the corner away all together.
    – ErraticFox
    Commented Aug 27, 2014 at 17:13

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