How to Create a Set of Flat Clock Icons in Adobe Illustrator
Despite the fact that many people nowadays use their smartphones to check the time, the clock remains one of the most popular items of the interior. There is a huge
variety of shapes and colors and types of clock around us: kitchen timers, alarm
clocks, flip clocks, wall clocks, cabinet clocks, and many other kinds of clock.
tutorial we’ll be creating three different types of clock in a trendy flat
style, applying solid colors and geometric shapes. We’ll learn to design the
clock face, working with the Rotate Tool
and using other handy tools and functions of Adobe Illustrator.
By the end
of this tutorial, you’ll be able to create any kind of flat objects, whether
those are flat clock icons or cooking icons or anything else. Make sure you’ve
browsed the vector section of GraphicRiver for more inspiration. And let’s
1. How to
Design a Kitchen Timer
by making the clock face. Use the Ellipse
Tool (L) to create a 95 x 95 px
Copy the circle and Paste in Back (Control-C > Control-B). Scale the copy up to 175 x 175 px, setting its new size either
in the control panel on top or in the Transform
panel. Make the Fill color a bit
depict the minute and second graduation marks of the clock face, starting from the top.
Grab the Line Segment Tool () or
the Pen Tool (P), hold Shift and make a short line with red Stroke color. Head to the Stroke panel and set the Weight to 2 pt and Cap to Round Cap, making the line thick enough
and rounded at the tips.
Select the stroke with the Selection Tool (V), hold Alt-Shift and drag down to make a copy at the bottom of the clock face. Group (Control-G) the created strokes.
that both strokes are centered perfectly. To do this, select the strokes together
with the circle and click the circle once again to make it a Key Object. Open the Align panel and click Horizontal Align Center.
Duplicate (Control-C > Control-F) our group of strokes and rotate the copy 90 degrees.
be adding minor graduations for 60 seconds. Duplicate
those vertical red strokes that we created earlier, change the Stroke color to brown, and set the Weight to 1 pt. You can make the red strokes invisible by clicking the eye icon in the Layers panel in order not to be distracted by them.
group of strokes selected, double-click
the Rotate Tool (R) and set the Angle to 360/60 in order to calculate the value automatically. Click Copy to create a new pair of strokes.
Press Control-D to repeat the last
action and continue pressing Control-D
to add all 30 pairs of strokes.
Now we can make the red strokes visible again and Bring
them to Front (Shift-Control-]),
above the brown strokes.
move on to the body or the case of our timer. Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and make a 140 x 145
px red rectangle. Send it to Back (Shift-Control-
[), beneath the clock face.
Select both the left and right top anchor points of the rectangle with the Direct Selection Tool (A) and pull the circle markers of the Live Corners to make the top of the
shape fully rounded.
also set the Corner Radius of the
top corners to 15 pt in the control
panel on top, while keeping them selected with the Direct Selection Tool (A).
add some dimension to our shape, creating a rim around the clock case.
Select the case and go to Object >
Path > Offset Path and set the Offset
value to 5 px, leaving all other
options as default. Make the new shape a bit darker.
Take the Rounded Rectangle Tool and let’s add a
small stand in the bottom of the case. Create a 115 x 15 px dark-red shape with 7.5
Let’s add a
hand to our timer. Take the Ellipse
Tool (L) and make a 25 x 90 px red
oval. Pick the color from the case of the clock using the Eyedropper Tool (I).
Duplicate the oval and squash it to 9 x 88 px, making the top shape a bit
the Rectangle Tool (M) and make a 33 x 55 px dark-red shape. Send it Backward, beneath the hand, by pressing Control-[ twice.
top corners of the shape slightly rounded, setting the Radius to 9 px.
We need to
make the bottom of the shape slightly arched to make it fit the clock face.
Take the Curvature Tool (Shift-‘)
and pull the bottom edge down to bend it.
Let’s add a
final detail to our timer: a gentle highlight over the plastic case. Use the Rectangle Tool (M) to make a 55 x 190 px shape of a slightly lighter
red color than we have for the case.
the case and the rectangle and take the Shape
Builder Tool (Shift-M). Hold Alt
and click the top piece of the rectangle to delete it.
bottom piece of the rectangle using the same method—and there we have it! Our
kitchen timer is finished!
on to the next clock.
2. How to
Create a Flip Clock
designing our flip clock from its screen. Arm yourself with the Rounded Rectangle Tool and make a 170 x 85 px light-yellow shape with 8 px Corner Radius.
shape selected, go to Object > Path
> Offset Path and apply 10 px
Offset value. Fill the new shape with dark-green color.
either apply Offset Path once again
or just create a new rectangle of 210 x 130
px size beneath the previous two. Fill it with vivid turquoise color and
set the Corner Radius to 25 px, thus depicting a plastic clock case.
darker rim to the turquoise shape by either adding a 3 px Offset Path or by creating a 220 x 140 px rectangle with rounded corners.
Create a 170 x 10 px dark-turquoise rounded
rectangle for the stand and Send it to Back (Shift-Control-[).
some buttons. Add another rounded rectangle of 120 x 25 px size on top of the clock, filling it with the same
dark-green color as we have for the edge of the screen. Place the button beneath the clock
case. Add another button on the right side of the clock, applying a
time to add the figures! I’m using the Type
Tool (T) and Bebas free font to set the time to 19:30.
Object > Expand the text, turning it into editable curves.
figure separately, if needed, so that the spacing between 9 and 3 is slightly
larger than the rest of the gaps.
Take the Rounded Rectangle Tool and let’s add 37 x 76 px dark-green shapes for the
flipping elements beneath each figure.
create one rectangle on the left and then just drag it to the right while
holding Alt-Shift to create a copy.
Then press Control-D twice to
repeat your last action.
Use the Align panel to align the
rectangles to the Horizontal Center
of the figures.
Use the Line Segment Tool () or the Pen Tool (P) to add a divider. Hold Shift and make a vertical dark-green
line across the center of clock face. Set the Weight to 2 pt in the Stroke panel.
let’s split the figures apart as well. Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and make a narrow horizontal stripe across the
display (I filled it with red color to make it clearly visible).
only the figures and Object >
Compound Path > Make (Conrol-8), uniting separate elements into a
compound path together with the red rectangle and apply the Minus Front function of
the Pathfinder to cut the stripe out, leaving a horizontal gap across all the
have it! Our flip clock is finished. Now we can move on to the next one!
3. How to
Make a Modern Wall Clock
we start by designing the clock face. Take the Rounded Rectangle Tool and make a 120 x 120 px light-beige square. Apply Object > Path > Offset Path with 5 px Offset value and make the new shape somewhat darker.
use Offset Path again or create a
new 150 x 150 px rectangle with 13 px Corner Radius. Fill the new shape
with vivid orange color and Align it
to the clock face (as to the Key Object),
if needed, clicking Horizontal Align
Center and Vertical Align Center.
Apply a 5 px Offset Path to the orange shape
and make the rim slightly darker, adding dimension to the clock.
adding the graduation marks to the clock face. Use the Ellipse Tool (L) and hold Shift
to make a 12 x 12 px orange circle on
top of the face. Hold Alt-Shift and
drag the circle down, creating a copy at the bottom of the face.
Group (Control-G) both circles and Align them to the clock face.
Duplicate (Control-C > Control-F) our group of circles and rotate the
copy 90 degrees.
Duplicate the vertical group once again and let’s add
other type of graduation mark. Set the Fill
color of the copy to None and the Stroke color to dark-blue. Set the Weight to 2 pt in the Stroke
Double-click the Rotate
Tool (R) and set the Angle value
to 30 degrees. Click Copy and continue by pressing Control-D multiple times to add all 12
circles to the clock face.
Bring the orange circles of the graduation to Front (Control-]) to cover the
Now let’s add the hands of the clock! Start by
making a red circle in the center and Align
it to the clock face.
Make a short vertical dark-blue stroke using
the Line Segment Tool (), and set the Weight to 7 pt and the Cap to Round Cap, this way creating an hour
hand. Send it Backward (Control-[), beneath the red circle.
minute hand, making it longer and decreasing the Stroke Weight to 4 pt.
depict the second hand, changing the Stroke
color to red and the Weight to 3 pt.
minor details to the clock face. Use the Ellipse
Tool (L) to create a large oval over the bottom half of the clock face. Now
select both the clock face and the oval, switch to the Shape Builder Tool (Shift-M), and single-click the top part of the clock face to split it apart. Make
the top part slightly darker, creating an overtone.
wall clock is completed!
on the Clock! Our Clock Icons Set Is Finished!
Great job! I hope you’ve enjoyed following this tutorial and discovered some useful new tips and tricks.
continue expanding this set and create more clock icons, like those in the image