How to Draw a Disco Ball in Illustrator

This tutorial will show you how to make a 3D disco ball or disco light in Adobe Illustrator.

Begin by opening up a new document. Create a rectangle using the rectangle tool. Fill it with whatever gradient you want. A radial gradient would probably work best. You will need to know the specifications of this gradient later. So, to save you some trouble, go ahead and create a circle with this same gradient and move it to the side of your workspace.

Select this rectangle and go to Object >> Rasterize and click ok.

Go to Filter >> Create >> Object Mosaic and use these settings:

This is what your image should look similar to:

Now open the symbol panel. Click on your rectangle and drag it into the Symbol

Select the Ellipse tool and draw a Circle. Now select the Direct Selection tool and select only the left node. Hit the delete key and you will get a half circle:

Go to Effect >> 3D >> Revolve and apply these settings (do not hit
OK yet):

Click the Map Art button, and apply these settings (select your last created symbol and adjust it over your rectangle as shown below):

Hit OK. You should get something like this:

Go to Object >> Expand Appearance. Press Ctrl+Shift+G three times to Ungroup. Then in your Layers palette, you’ll have to go through and delete any layers that have the dark circle behind your disco ball. There may be several layers within each group that you have to delete.

After you delete the dark layers underneath, your ball should look like this:

Now create another circle the same size (or grab the one you previously made) and apply the same gradient to it. Select both using click+shift, and align them with Horizontal Align Center and Vertical Align Center.

Release Clipping Mask (Object >> Clipping Mask >> Release) and ungroup tiles (by pressing Ctrl+Shift+G). Now select some small pieces and change their colors do a darker shade. Select some more pieces and change them to a lighter shade.

Select more parts and change the colors to several different shades.

Select the Star tool and click anywhere in the document. A box will appear; use the following settings:

You should get this:

Fill the star with white, resize it, and duplicate it a few times. Put them in different places to create a sparkle effect. Rotate some of them.

Then use the image in whatever way you need it. I added a large star behind the ball and lowered the opacity. I also added a gradient to the background of the image.

By Kristen Pace

Kristen Pace is a current graphic design student and intern with iEntry, Inc.

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