I'm a researcher in computer science field, and a beginner of adobe illustrator.

I'd like to draw "artificial neural network" like below:

enter image description here

Is it possible to easily draw this kind of picture with illustrator?

  • 1
    It's fairly easy already - lines and circles, and the top is mirrored to the bottom. Are you looking for a specific "Draw Neural Network" tool? – usr2564301 Sep 22 '16 at 17:39
  • 2
    If you want a specific tool look for yEd or Graphviz. But yes it takes about 2-3 minutes to draw that manually. – joojaa Sep 22 '16 at 18:30


Research the Circle Shape tool. It has four points it creates, known as vertices, at the top-bottom-right-left. These will be useful for snapping your connecting lines together.

Then research the Line Tool. It makes a line from one point to another.

Then you'll need to turn on Snapping and SmartGuides. SmartGuides aren't smart, but they'll help you (sometimes) make sure your lines go where you want.

Next, draw the first circle, starting at the top left of your diagram.

Change its fill to blue. Then tap the v key, then hold down [alt] and drag that first circle to the right as much as you want. This copies it.

From here, start experimenting with copying circles, copying them and attaching them with lines.

Warning There is no facility to make bindings between lines and objects in Illustrator, so if you move a circle you'll have to move the lines.

  • 1
    Protip: You can use the white arrow and Marque select both a circle and the other half of the points it now moves both the circle and lines other end as if they were one. Bonus tip: If you hold alt it will copy the circle and all the moved lines allowing you to draw one circle and itw connetions and duplicate others. – joojaa Sep 22 '16 at 18:45

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