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  1. Design & Illustration
  2. Gradient Mesh Tool

How to Draw Vanilla Flowers With Mesh in Adobe Illustrator

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

In this tutorial you will learn how to use the Mesh Tool in Adobe Illustrator to create a beautiful set of vanilla flowers!

If you want to skip the tutorial and just use this vector in your work, purchase Vanilla with Two Flowers from GraphicRiver!

Vanilla with Two Flowers
Vanilla with Two Flowers

1. How to Draw the Spice

Step 1

Draw a brown rectangle, filling it with #2F1D12, and then using the Mesh Tool (U) to shape the object as shown below.

By clicking inside the object, create several rows of mesh. Color half of the nodes (rows) on the left side with #5C4A41, creating stripes.

Finish the stripes by coloring the nodes on the right side with #6D5A52.

draw vanilla with mesh

Step 2

Create a copy of the object and go to Effect > Warp > Arc. Input the following settings:

  • Bend: -14%
  • Horizontal: -14%
  • Vertical: -12%

Go to Object > Expand Appearance.

gradient mesh

Step 3

Create another copy of the object we made in Step 1 and apply Effect > Warp > Arc again. Input the following settings:

  • Bend: 11%
  • Horizontal: -22%
  • Vertical: 9%

Go to Object > Expand Appearance.

expand appearance

Step 4

The vanilla spice is done!

warp effect

2. How to Draw the Flower

Step 1

Bend a rectangle with mesh, and then color it as indicated in the screenshot below.

  1. #F1EFF0
  2. #E3DFDF
  3. #E4E2E2
  4. #F4F5F5
  5. #FFFFFF
  6. #F4F2F2
  7. #D3CAAE
  8. #E0D7C4
  9. #EFEDEF
draw flower petal in adobe illustrator

Step 2

Color another petal.

  1. #E3DFDF
  2. #E5E5E5
  3. #CDBD96
  4. #DADBD7
  5. #E2DFD7
  6. #F7F9FD
how to use mesh

Step 3

Draw the third petal.

  1. #E6E5E4
  2. #F3F2F4
  3. #E9E8EA
  4. #E6E6E4
  5. #DEDCD8
  6. #DDCEBA
how to draw flower in adobe illustrator

Step 4

Draw another petal.

  1. #F0EEED
  2. #E6E1DE
  3. #F0F2EE
  4. #E3DBDA
how to draw flower petal vector

Step 5

Add one more petal.

  1. #F0EEED
  2. #EFEFEA
  3. #E3DBDA
  4. #EEECE7
photo-realistic vanilla flower

Step 6

Draw an element for the middle of the flower.

  1. #F0EBE5
  2. #FEFDFC
  3. #EEF0D5
  4. #EDE3BC
  5. #D0AD43
  6. #E3DBBA
  7. #DCD293
  8. #E3DBBA
  9. #E4DEBD
  10. #D6BC9B
  11. #DCC8AC
  12. #DFC77B
draw with mesh
gradient mesh

Step 7

Add one more element.

  1. #E0D9BB
  2. #F0EEEE
  3. #E0CA85
  4. #CD9E68
vector mesh drawing

Step 8

  1. #F4F3F3
  2. #F1F2DD
  3. #EAE7E6
vector petal

Step 9

Draw the final mesh element.

  1. #D09208
  2. #E3A500
  3. #CD8A03
flower vector

Step 10

Draw two red ellipses: one #860000 and the second one #D22600. Place the darker ellipse into the bigger one, and then make the big ellipse transparent.

make blend

Step 11

Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options, choosing Specified Steps, 30.

Select both ellipses and apply Object > Blend > Make.

blend vector

Step 12

Repeat Step 10, but with different colors: #D22600 and #D09208.

how to make blend adobe illustrator

Step 13

Repeat Step 11.


Step 14

Place two copies of the darker blend on top of the lighter one, and then go to Effect > Warp > Arc.

  • Bend: 18%
  • Horizontal: 32%
  • Vertical: 1%
warp effects adobe illustrator

Step 15

Place the blends on top of the element we made in Step 9.

vector flower

3. How to Complete the Flower

Step 1

Assemble the middle of the flower.

middle vanilla

Step 2

If you'd like to apply texture to the petals of the flower, go ahead and learn how to get this texture in this previous tutorial. Go to Part 2 for the texture!

Make the texture white, and then draw an outline of the first petal we made. Place the outline on top of the texture, right-click, and select Make Clipping Mask.

Change the Opacity of the object to 40% and Lighten, and then place it on top of the mesh petal.

apply texture

Step 3

Do the same thing for the second petal.

texture petal

Step 4

Continue with the third petal.

apply vector texture

Step 5

Assemble the flower!

assemble vanilla flower

Step 6

Finally, draw a shadow for the image. Fill an ellipse with Radial Gradient from #B7B6A3 to #FFFEFF.


Step 7

Change the object's Transparency to Multiply.


Step 8

Place the shadows under the vanilla and the flowers!

add shadows

Awesome Work, You're Now Done!

Thank you for following along, and please feel welcome to post your result in the comments. I'll be looking forward to seeing it!

In this tutorial, you learned how to create a pair of vanilla flowers using the Mesh Tool.

I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial and learned how to use some useful tools for the future! Check out some of my other vector tutorials on my instructor profile.

You can purchase this item as well as other similar designs in my portfolio on GraphicRiver.

Vanilla with Two Flowers
Vanilla with Two Flowers
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