Create a Memphis Background using the Pathfinder tool

In this quick and easy tutorial, let us create a Memphis style Background in Adobe Illustrator using basic shapes, pen tool and the pathfinder tool.

  1. Create a new document of width and height 600px.
  2. Under View menu, switch on Smart Guides and switch off Snap to Pixel option.
  3. Creating the basic shapes:
    • Create a rectangle using the Rectangle tool (shortcut M) with width and height 600px.
    • Align it to the center of the Artboard using the Align panel.
    • Using the pen tool, draw diagonal lines for the rectangle (Click esc or return in Mac to stop drawing, after each line).
    • Draw a vertical and horizontal line to join the centers of the opposite sides of the rectangle (Use the Smart Guides to identify the exact points. Also, hold shift while drawing to ensure straight line).
    • Create a rectangle using the Rectangle tool (shortcut M) with width 400px and height 150px.
    • Align it to the center of the Artboard using the Align panel.
    • Right click on the rectangle and Transform > Rotate (or Object > Transform > Rotate ).
    • Rotate settings: Angle is -45°
    • Create a circle using the Ellipse tool (shortcut L) with width and height 150px.
    • Align it to the Artboard using Horizontal Align Left and Vertical Align Bottom.
    • Now move it 40px diagonally towards the center.
      • Do this by holding Shift and Right Arrow key 4 times.
      • Shift and Up Arrow key 4 times.
    • Create another circle using the Ellipse tool (shortcut L) with width and height 150px.
    • Align it to the Artboard using Vertical Align Top and Horizontal Align Right.
    • Now move it 40px diagonally towards the center.
      • Do this by holding Shift and Left Arrow key 4 times.
      • Shift and Down Arrow key 4 times.
  4. Divide the shapes:
    • Drag and select all, using the Selection tool.
    • Click on Pathfinder panel > Divide.
    • Click on Object > Ungroup.
  5. Create the dot pattern:
    • Create a circle using the Ellipse tool (shortcut L) with width and height 10px.
    • Make sure its Fill is set to black and Stroke is set to none.
    • Click on Object > Pattern > Make.
    • In the pattern settings, increase the width and height to 20px. Click on Done.
  6. Filling the colors and pattern:
    • Select any parts of the shapes as you like and fill it with the color of your choice or our created pattern.
    • Refer to the video to try the same combination. Have fun.

Video tutorial: