This tutorial will cover how to easily create mandala patterns in Abode Illustrator by using multiple tools including symbol, transform, rotation, strokes and etc. By using a symbol tool in Illustrator, you can create mandalas just by creating patterns on one single piece.
Creating Mandalas Using Adobe Illustrator
First, begin by selecting the Polygon tool in a new document. We will create a 12 sides with 100mm radius. (More sides will result in more detailed pattern.)
Draw lines with the Line tool between each point in the polygon.
Select all the objects and then click Divide button from the Pathfinder tool to break the polygon into 12 triangles.
Right click on the divided triangles to Ungroup. You will be able to move around each triangles from one another by ungrouping.
Delete all the triangles except one. After clicking on the one remaining triangle, make a symbol by clicking the New Symbol Button on Symbol tool.
Select the Rotate tool and hold Option while clicking the point of the triangle. Set angle as 30 and then hit the Copy button.
Use the shortcut Command+D to duplicate the action you have just done. Duplicate 11 more triangle symbols to complete the polygon shape that we have created earlier.
Double click on any of the one triangle to edit the Symbol. Any edits made in this symbol will also be applied to all the rest triangles as well.
Place a guide in the center of the shape and then lock the triangle to avoid moving it while drawing things on it.
Start drawing on one side of the triangle (divided by the guide). You can use Line tools, Arc, Paint Brush or any tool you want to use to create your own pattern. Make sure to draw any lines and patterns inside the triangle. You can also use the Smart Guides to snap the points to other existing points, paths or guides to result in clean-looking mandala.
Once you are done creating lines in one side of the triangle, you will select all the lines you have created. You will then copy and paste in front by using keyboard shortcut Command+C and Command+F. Make sure to group all the shapes together so that we would not mess up the drawing by using Command+G. And then go to Object -> Transform -> Reflect. Select the Vertical option.
Place the reflected drawings right next to the original drawing we have done. Zooming in and aligning with points and guide is helpful.
Click on the small arrow at the top of the document window to exit out of editing symbol. Clicking on it will result in automatically applying any update on the symbol to the rest of the triangles.
You now created a mandala just by drawing and editing on half of the triangle. You can make more complex and detailed mandala by creating more sides. Enjoy!