When you choose align to a key object in Illustrator it automatically selects an object on the higher layer. If I want to select other object I have to select it manually, which is not comfortable when it is small. Is there a hot key combination to switch between two objects?

  • 1
    Intersting question, I'm fairly certain that the answer is no, unfortunately.
    – Westside
    Feb 17, 2017 at 15:50
  • 1
    Same comment than Chris. Would be great but I'm not aware of such a hot key...
    – Vinny
    Feb 17, 2017 at 15:56
  • As far as I know, there is no way to access the key object via javascript either. The only way to get around it with javascript, that I could come up with, is to move the selected objects to a new layer and change their stacking order within that layer, so that the next key object would be in front. This could however change the visual look drastically and could be pretty destructive. Not just that, but you'd have to select Align to Key object from the little dropdown menu every single time you run the script, because there is no way to make it stick.
    – Joonas
    Feb 17, 2017 at 19:42

2 Answers 2


This article says the same:

  • select all the objects
  • hold and click on your key object ("align to" will be changed automatically)
  • Seems to be ALT on a Mac
    – developius
    Aug 19, 2019 at 5:57

No, there isn't a hot key for selecting a key object. You'll need to single-click the desired object.

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