How to Create the Impossible Triangle (Penrose) in Adobe Illustrator CC!

In this Illustrator tutorial, we’ll create the Impossible Triangle – also called the “Penrose Triangle” with a few easy to understand Illustrator Tools. We’ll then add some texture to this optical illusion shape. Whether you enjoy optical illusion drawings, or like to create impossible shapes digitally in Illustrator, you’ll for sure enjoy this tutorial!

Tools used in this Adobe Illustrator Tutorial:

  • Polygon Tool
  • Pen Tool
  • Pathfinder Tools

How to Get Started:

  1. Choose the Polygon Tool (Underneath the Rectangle Tool)
  2. Click once on the Artboard and set in the Popup Menu the Radius to “180pt” and Sides to “3”
  3. Set a large Stroke (60pt) and no fill
  4. Outline the Stroke by going to Object > Path > Outline Stroke
  5. Create 3 straight lines with the Pen Tool along the Sides of the triangle (inside)
  6. Select all and in the Pathfinder Panel choose Divide

Now we have the shapes to build up our Penrose Triangle. The next steps are simple to copy and unite the shapes we need. Below is a small graphic to show you the shape positions.

Once you built up the shapes and used the Pathfinder Tools to unite them and add different colors to them. The end pieces can be copied from the cut up triangle.

In the end, you will have a cool looking Impossible Triangle. Start watching the video tutorial now!


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