How can I clone an link image in Illustrator so I can use multi times the same link image and when I change the link image it alters all the copies as well?

(Not possible by symbols)


If you placed an image as a linked file then just copy/paste that image as many times as you want. When you want to update the image just save over the image with the same name. When you go back to Illustrator you will be prompted with "Some files are missing or modified in the Links panel. Would you like to update them now?" Select Yes.

You can also change all of the same images by selecting them in the links panel and selecting the "Relink" chain icon and select a new or updated image.

  • This are workarounds / alternative ways to do it, I they a good ideas… but I was looking for more direct ways to do this, like symbols or different ways to copy them (so it only assume one link image). But probably this is another strange limitation of adobe illustrator.
    – user38561
    Oct 19 '16 at 21:35
  • I am not sure how this is a "workaround" but rather this is how links work, even in InDesign when you add a link multiple times it will create multiple instances of that image in the link panels (except that InDesign groups them). Check out "A symbol definition cannot contain a linked image" on why you cannot add images to symbols. However a user there mentions a workaround to that issue.
    – AndrewH
    Oct 19 '16 at 21:54

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