How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

In today’s tutorial we’re going to step away from the regular program and tackle something new for a change. We’re going to get our architecture hats on and build the Toronto skyline, using some of the most basic shapes and tools that we’ve been working with lately.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

So grab a cup of that special coffee blend, and let’s get started!

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Oh, and before I forget, you can always expand the project by checking out GraphicRiver where you can find tons of inspiring skyline illustrations just waiting to be clicked on.

1.How
to Set Up a New Project File

Since I’m assuming you already have Illustrator up and running in the background, bring it up and let’s set up a New Document (File > New or Control-N) for our project using the following settings:

  • Number of Artboards: 1
  • Width: 1200 px
  • Height: 600 px
  • Units: Pixels

And from the Advanced tab:

  • Color Mode: RGB
  • Raster Effects: Screen (72ppi)
  • Preview Mode: Default

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Quick tip: some of you might have noticed that the Align New Objects to Pixel Grid option is missing. That’s because I’m running the new CC 2017 version of the software, where great changes have been made to the way Illustrator handles the way shapes snap to the underlying Pixel Grid.

2. How to Set Up a Custom Grid

Now, I know we’re not working on icons today, but since we’re going to be creating the illustration using a
pixel-perfect workflow, we’ll want to set up a nice little grid so that we can have full control over our shapes.

Step 1

Go to the Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid submenu, and adjust the following settings:

  • Gridline every: 1 px
  • Subdivisions: 1

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Quick
tip: you can learn more about grids by reading this
in-depth piece on how Illustrator’s Grid System works.

Step 2

Once we’ve set up our custom grid, all we
need to do in order to make sure our shapes look crisp is enable the Snap to Grid option found under the View menu, which will transform into Snap to Pixel each time you enter Pixel Preview mode.

Now, if you’re new to
the whole “pixel-perfect workflow”, I strongly recommend you go through my how
to create pixel-perfect artwork
tutorial, which will help you widen your
technical skills in no time.

3. How
to Set Up the Layers

Once we’ve finished setting up our project
file, it would be a good idea to structure our document using some layers, since this way we can maintain a steady workflow by focusing on one
section at a time.

That being said, bring up the Layers panel and create a total of six
layers, which we will rename as follows:

  • layer 1: background
  • layer 2: frame
  • layer 3: foreground line
  • layer 4: buildings
  • layer 5: water lines
  • layer 6: sky
    lines

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

4. How
to Create the Frame

As you’ve probably already noticed, our
little city is perfectly framed inside a fairly large rectangle, which we will
use in a similar way to how we would normally use a reference grid, since we’re
going to position our shapes in relation to its outer edges, in order to
reconstruct the composition.

Step 1

Let’s kick off the project by first making
sure that we’re on the right layer (that would be the second one) and then
creating the main shape for our frame using a 1120 x 520 px rectangle, which we will color using #282020 and then
center align to our Artboard.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Turn the shape that we’ve just created into
an outline by pressing Shift-X and
then setting its Stroke’s Weight to 8 px, making sure to lock its layer once you’re done.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

5. How
to Create the Foreground Line

Before we start, make sure you’re on the
right layer (that would be the third one) and then zoom in on its bottom-left
corner so you can have a better view of what you’re going to be creating.

Step 1

Create the
foreground’s smaller line segment using a 36
px wide 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will position
at a distance of 84 px from the
frame’s left edge and 50 px from
its bottom one.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Create the larger line segment using a 900 px wide 8 px thick Stroke (#282020)
which we will position on the right side of the one that we’ve just created,
at a distance of 8 px.

Once you’re done, select
and group (Control-G) both line
segments together, locking their layer afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

6. How
to Create the First Building

Our next step is to start working on the
little buildings that make up our skyline. That being said, make sure you’re on
the right layer (that would be the fourth one), and then zoom in onto the Artboard’s bottom-left corner so that
we can get started.

Step 1

Create the main shape
for the first building using 48 x 106 px
rectangle (#282020), which we will turn into an outline by flipping its Fill with its Stroke (Shift-X) and
then setting its Weight to 8 px. Position the resulting shape on
the larger foreground line segment, at a distance of 24 px from its left edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Start adding details to
the building by creating two 16 x 10 px rectangles
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will bottom
align to each of its corners, making sure their strokes end up overlapping
each other.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Add the windows using seven 48 px wide 8 px thick Stroke lines
(#282020) which we will vertically stack at a distance of 12 px from one another. Once you’re done, group the lines (Control-G) and then horizontal center
align them to the building’s upper section.

Before you move on,
select and group (Control-G) all the
shapes that we have so far to separate the building’s different sections.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Create the rooftop using
a 32 x 12 px rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position on top of the building’s
outline, making sure to center align it to the larger group.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Start adding details to
the roof by creating a 14 x 12 px rectangle
(#282020) which we will position over its outline’s upper half, aligning it to its left edge
afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 6

Create and position a
6 x 4 px rectangle (#282020) on top
of the shape that we’ve created in the previous step, aligning it to its right
edge, making sure to group (Control-G)
them together afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 7

Finish off the roof by creating a 10 x 8 px rectangle
(#282020) which we will position on top of the roof’s outline, aligning it to
its right edge. Once you’re done, select and group all of the roof’s composing
shapes together using the Control-G keyboard
shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 8

Since we’re pretty much done
working on the first building, we can now select all of its composing sections
and group them either by using the Control-G
keyboard shortcut or by right
clicking > Group.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

7. How
to Create the Second Building (the SkyDome)

Move a few pixels towards the right, and
then let’s start working on the second building, which is the iconic SkyDome
(now Rogers Centre) that Toronto is known for.

Step 1

Start working on the dome’s
center section by creating a 224 x 56 px
rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
onto the foreground detail line, at a distance of 64 px from the first building.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Create the frame for
the centered set of windows, using a 48
x 20 px rectangle with an 8 px thick
Stroke (#282020) which we will
center align to the larger shape’s base.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Using the Pen Tool (P),draw two 20 px tall 8 px thick Stroke lines
(#282020) which we will position16
px from one another, grouping (Control-G)
and then center aligning them to the frame afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Finish off the center
window frame by drawing a 48 px wide
4 px thick Stroke line (#282020) which we will align to its center, selecting
and grouping (Control-G) all its
composing shapes afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Create two copies (Control-C > Control-F x 2) of the
windows set that we’ve just finished working on, and position one on each side of the dome,
at a distance of 24 px from the
original.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 6

Start working on the
dome’s top window row, by creating the frame using a 224 x 12 px rectangle with an 8
px thick Stroke (#282020) which
we will center align to its main body, at a distance of 4 px from the windows that we’ve just finished working on.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 7

Create the
windows using nine 12 px tall 8 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) which we will position24 px from one another, grouping (Control-G) and then center aligning
them to the larger frame.

Once you’re done, select both
the frame and the vertical stroke lines that we’ve just created and group (Control-G) those and the entire front
section of the dome together as well.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 8

Start working on the
building’s left section by creating a 38
x 76 px rectangle with an 8 px thick
Stroke (#282020) which we will
position on its side, so that their paths overlap.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 9

Adjust the shape
that we’ve
just created by first turning onPixel
Preview mode (Alt-Control-Y) and
then adding two new anchor points to its path, one at a distance of 12 px from its left edge, followed by another
one at just 8 px.

Then, select the two
top-right anchor points and push them to the bottom by 8 px (right click >
Transform > Move > Vertical > 8 px).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 10

Start adding details
to the resulting shape by creating three 38
px wide 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) which we will
vertically stack6 px from one
another, grouping (Control-G) and
then center aligning them to the bottom edge of the larger shape, at a distance
of just 4 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 11

Create another set of
two 38 px wide 4 px thick Stroke lines
(#282020) which we will vertically stack at a distance of 10 px from one another, positioning them above the previous lines
at a distance of 4 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 12

Add an 8 x 10 px rectangle (#282020) between the two lines that we’ve just created, positioning it at a distance
of 4 px from the section’s larger
outline, selecting and grouping (Control-G)
all three shapes together afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 13

Create a copy (Control-C > Control-F) of the shapes
that we’ve just grouped, and then vertically position it at a distance of 8 px from the original, selecting and
grouping (Control-G) all of the side
section’s composing shapes afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 14

Create the building’s right side
section using a copy of the one that we’ve just finished working on, which we
will position so that the paths overlap, making sure to vertically reflect it
afterwards (right click > Transform
> Reflect > Vertical).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 15

Start working on the
dome’s roof by creating
a 224 x 80 px ellipse with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will center align to the dome so that
its outer anchor points overlap those of the building’s side sections.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 16

Adjust the shape that
we’ve just created by pinching its side anchor points with the help of the Anchor Point Tool (Shift-C), cutting it in half afterwards by selecting its bottom
anchor point with the Direct Selection
Tool (A) and then removing it by pressing Delete.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 17

Create the outer
section of the roof, using a 276 x 108
px ellipse with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
over the dome, so that its outer anchor points overlap the top ones of the building’s
side sections.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 18

Adjust the shape that
we’ve just created using the same process of pinching its side anchor
points and then selecting and removing its bottom half, so that in the end you
have a nice bolted roof.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 19

Start working on the
roof’s arches by creating a 48 x 104 px
ellipse with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will cut in
half by selecting and then removing its bottom anchor point (Delete). Once you’re done, center align
the resulting shape to the roof’s inner section, positioning it so that their
paths overlap.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 20

Add the second arch
line using a 128 x 104 px ellipse
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will adjust
by removing its bottom half, center aligning the resulting shape to the
previously created arch.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 21

Create the third and
last arch line using a 196 x 104 px ellipse
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will adjust
by removing its bottom half and then center aligning the resulting shape to
the previously created shape.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 22

Finish off the roof, and
with it the dome itself, by adding a couple of 4 x 8 px rectangles (#282020) to the center of the arches that we’ve just created.
Once you’re done, select and group (Control-G)
all of the roof’s composing shapes together, doing the same for the entire
building afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

8. How
to Create the Third Building

Once we’ve
finished working on the dome, we can start working on the background building
from behind its left side.

Step 1

Create the building’s
main body using a 32 x 126 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will
position over the dome’s left section, so that their paths end up overlapping.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Since we need the
building to sit behind the dome, we’ll have to adjust the shape that we’ve just
created by adding a new anchor point to the center of its stroke’s bottom
edge, which we will then remove by pressing Delete. Then, simply select and
drag its bottom anchor points to the top, until they end up overlapping the
roof’s outer section.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Add the windows using
two 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) vertically stacked at a distance of8 px from one another, which we will group (Control-G) and then center align to the building, at a distance of 4 px from its top edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Create the antenna using
a 16 px tall 4 px thick Stroke line
(#282020) which we will position onto the left side of the building’s roof.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Finish off the building
by adding a 10 x 8 px rectangle
(#282020) to the right side of its roof, selecting and grouping all its
composing shapes together afterwards using the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

9. How
to Create the Fourth Building

Move on to the right side of the dome, and
let’s start working on our fourth building, which can be seen behind it.

Step 1

Create the building’s
main body using a 48 x 92 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will
position behind the dome’s right section, making sure to adjust its left side so that its paths don’t obscure the shapes sitting in front of it.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Add the windows using
five 40 px wide 8 px thick Stroke lines
(#282020) stacked vertically16 px from
one another, which we will group (Control-G)
and then position in the center of the front section of the building, at a
distance of 8 px from its top edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Create the roof using
a 28 x 12 px rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position on top of the main
building, aligning it to its left edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Finish off the roof, and with it the building itself, by adding a 14 x 8 px rectangle (#282020) on its right side, selecting and
grouping (Control-G) all its
composing shapes together. Once you’re done, do the same for the entire
building so that in case you move it, you won’t have shapes left behind.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

10. How
to Create the Fifth Building (the CN Tower)

The next
building that we are going to recreate is the iconic CN Tower, which is one of
the world’s
tallest free-standing structures ever made.

Step 1

Start working on the
tower’s base by creating a 36 x 260 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
on the right side of the building that we’ve just finished working on, at a
distance of 40 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Start adjusting the
shape by first turning onPixel
Preview mode (Alt-Control-Y),
and then adding a new anchor to each of its sides at a distance of 88 px from its top edge, using the Add Anchor Point Tool (+).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Turn off Pixel Preview mode (Alt-Control-Y) and then adjust the
shape by individually selecting its bottom anchor points, and then pushing them
to the outside by 26 px (right click > Transform >
Move > Horizontal > + / – 26 px depending on which side you start with).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Take a few moments
and adjust the curvature of the tower’s leg base by clicking on its center
anchor points and then dragging and repositioning its handles’ end points to
the bottom, at a distance of 116 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Create the frame holding
the windows, using a 12 x 244 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will center
align to its bottom edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 6

Add the windows by
creating 29 lines that are12 px wide and have a4 px thick Stroke(#282020), which we will vertically stack8 px from one another, grouping (Control-G) and then center aligning
them to the frame that we created in the previous step. Also, since
we’re pretty much done working on this section of the building, don’t forget to
select and group (Control-G) all its
composing shapes as well.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 7

Start working on the sky
pod by creating its lower section using a 72
x 12 px rounded rectangle with a 6
px Corner Radius and an 8 px thick
Stroke (#282020), which we will
position on top of the tower’s base, center aligning it to the larger shape.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 8

Create the pod’s main
section using a 68 x 26 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020), which we will position
on top of the previously created shape, making sure to center align it.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 9

Adjust the shape that
we’ve just created by first turning onPixel
Preview mode (Alt-Control-Y) and
then adding two new side anchor points at a distance of 16 px from its top edge, individually selecting and pushing its
bottom ones to the inside by 4 px (right click > Transform > Move >
Horizontal > + / – 4 px depending on which side you start with).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 10

Using the Pen Tool (P),draw a 68 px wide 8 px thick Stroke line
(#282020) which we will center align to the shape that we’ve just adjusted,
positioning it at a distance of 8 px from
its top edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 11

Next, create four 10 px tall 4 px thick vertical detail lines (#282020), which we will position16 px from one another, grouping
(Control-G) and then center aligning
them to the lower section created by the horizontal divider from the previous
step.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 12

Double-click on the
dividers to enter Isolation Mode,
and then individually select and adjust the first and last lines by pushing
their bottom anchor points to the inside by 4 px (right click >
Transform > Move > Horizontal > + / – 4 px depending on which side
you start with).

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 13

Create a 68 px wide 4 px thick Stroke line
(#282020), which we will center align to the empty space created by the pod’s
thicker horizontal divider.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 14

Finish off this
section of the pod by creating seven 8
px tall 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020), which we will position8 px from one another, grouping (Control-G) and then center aligning
them to the upper edge. Once you’re done, select and group all of the pod’s
composing shapes using the Control-G keyboard
shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 15

Start working on the
roof by creating a 60 x 10 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
on top of the sky pod and then adjust by individually selecting and pushing
its top anchor points to the inside by 4
px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 16

Create a smaller 52 x 10 px rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) and position it over the shape that we’ve just adjusted,
making sure to center align the two to one another.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 17

Create an 8 x 8 px square (#282020) which we will
position over the sky pod’s roof, making sure to align it to its left edge.
Once you’re done, select and group all of the roof’s composing shapes using the
Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 18

Start working on the
tower’s upper section by creating a 20 x
16 px rectangle with an 8 px thick
Stroke (#282020) which we will
position on top of the sky pod’s roof.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 19

Create a 12 x 48 px rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position on top of the previously
created shape. Then, add an 8 x 6 px rectangle
(#282020) onto each of its sides, positioning them at a distance of 8 px from the wider section, grouping (Control-G) them together afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 20

Create the space deck
using a 28 x 10 px rectangle with an
8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position on top of the tower’s upper
section.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 21

Start working on the
antenna by creating a 12 x 28 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
on top of the space deck that we’ve just created. Add a 32 px tall 8 px thick Stroke line (#282020) on top of it, and
then group the two (Control-G), doing
the same for the current section and the entire tower afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

11. How
to Create the Sixth Building

Assuming you’ve
managed to finish the CN Tower, move a few pixels to its right, and then let’s
start working on the building next to it.

Step 1

Start by creating its
main body using a 60 x 144 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
onto the right side of the tower, at a distance of 14 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Create the building’s
front section using a 28 x 144 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will center
align to its main body.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Add the front section’s
windows by creating sixteen 28 px wide
4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) stacked vertically8 px from one another, which we will group (Control-G) and then center align to it, at a distance of 4 px from its top edge. Once you have
them in place, select them along with the building’s front section and group (Control-G) those as well.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Create the side windows
using two columns of fifteen 16 px wide
4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) which we will group (Control-G) and then center align to the sides, positioning them at
a distance of 8 px from the
building’s top edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Add the door using an 8 x 8 px square (#282020) which we will
center align to the bottom of the building. Then, select all the shapes that
we’ve created so far and group them together using the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 6

Create the main shape
for the building’s roof using a 20 x 12
px rectangle with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
on top of its body, center aligning the two.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 7

Finish off the roof and
with it the building itself, by creating and positioning a 12 x 8 px rectangle with an 8
px thick Stroke (#282020) on top
of all the other shapes, selecting and grouping them together afterwards using
the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

12. How
to Create the Seventh Building

Move a few
pixels back towards the left side of the illustration, and let’s start working
on the smaller building which can be seen behind the CN Tower.

Step 1

Create the building’s
main body using an 18 x 72 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
onto the left side of the office tower that we’ve just finished working on. As
we did with most of our background buildings, make sure to adjust it so that it
won’t end up obscuring the shapes that are in front of it.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Add the windows
using seven 18 px wide 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) vertically stacked8 px from one another, which we will group (Control-G) and then center align to the building’s main body,
positioning them at a distance of 4 px from
its top edge.

Once you’re done, don’t
forget to select and group all the shapes that we have so far using
the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Start working on the
roof by creating a 10 x 8 px rectangle
(#282020) which we will position on top of its main body, making sure to align
it to its left edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Finish off the building
by adding its antenna using a 24 px tall
4 px thick Stroke line (#282020), which we will position on top of the
previously created shape, selecting and grouping all the shapes together using
the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

13. How
to Create the Eighth Building

Move a few
pixels back to the right side of the illustration, and let’s start working on
the eighth building, which is probably the shortest of the bunch.

Step 1

Create the building’s
main body using a 64 x 40 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
on the right side of the office tower that we’ve built before it.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Add the window rows
using three 64 px wide 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) stacked vertically8 px from one another, which we will group (Control-G) and then center align to the previously created shape,
positioning them at a distance of 4 px from
its top edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Add the little doors
using seven 4 x 6 px rectangles
(#282020) which we will position4 px
from one another, grouping (Control-G)
and then center aligning them to the bottom edge of the building. Once you’re done, select all
the shapes that we’ve created so far and group (Control-G) those together as well.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Start working on the
roof by creating a 24 x 10 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
onto the left side of the building, at a distance of 4 px from the office tower.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Add a 14 x 8 px rectangle (#282020) to the
right side of the roof, positioning it at a distance of 4 px from the previously created shape.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 6

Finish off the roof, and with it the building itself, by creating the little antenna using a 20 px tall 4 px thick Stroke line
(#282020) which we will position on the left side of the taller rectangle.
Once you’re done, group (Control-G)
all of the roof’s composing shapes together, doing the same for the entire
building afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

14. How
to Create the Ninth Building

The next building is basically a duplicate
of the one from section 11, so it shouldn’t take us long to get it done.

Create a copy (Control-C > Control-F) of the sixth
building that we created in section 11, and then position it on the right
side of the illustration, next to the one that we’ve just finished working on.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

15.How
to Create the Tenth Building

We are now down to our tenth (yes tenth)
and last building, so without wasting any more time let’s wrap up this section of
the illustration.

Step 1

Create the building’s
main body using a 42 x 88 px rectangle
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) which we will position
onto the right side of the taller structure from the previous step, at a
distance of 20 px.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Add the windows using
six 42 px wide 8 px thick Stroke lines
(#282020) vertically stacked12 px from
one another, which we will group (Control-G)
and then center align to the previously created shape, positioning them at a
distance of 8 px from its bottom
edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Create the doors
using two 6 x 8 px rectangles (#282020)
which we will distance at 14 px from
one another, grouping (Control-G)
and then center aligning them to the bottom edge of the building. Once you’re
done, select and group all of the shapes that we’ve created so far using the Control-G keyboard shortcut.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 4

Start working on the
roof by creating a 16 x 12 px rectangle
(#282020) which we will position on top of the building, at a distance of 8 px from its left edge.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 5

Finish off the
roof, and with it the building itself, by creating another smaller 10 x 8 px rectangle (#282020) which we
will position onto the right side of the shape from the previous step.

Then, once you’re done, group (Control-G) all of the roof’s composing
shapes together, doing the same for the entire building afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

16. How
to Create the Trees

Since we’re actually done working on the
buildings, our next step is to start creating and adding some of nature’s
finest creations: trees.

Step 1

Start by creating the
trunk using a 10 px tall 4 px thick Stroke line (#282020) (1), on top of which we will add an 8 x 10 px ellipse with a 4 px thick Stroke (#282020) (2). Adjust the ellipse by selecting its top
anchor point and then clicking on it with theAnchor
Point Tool (Shift-C) in order to make it pointy (3).

Finish off the tree by pushing the pointy anchor point to the top by 2 px (4), selecting and grouping (Control-G) both shapes together afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Since each tree is basically identical to
the next one, we’ll create one instance and then use multiple copies (Control-C > Control-F) to fill
up some of the empty spaces found between the buildings.

Then, once you’re
done, lock the current layer before moving on up to the next one.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

17. How
to Create the Water Lines

Assuming you’ve moved on up to the next
layer (that would be the fourth one), let’s take a couple of minutes and work
on our little water lines.

Step 1

Using the Pen Tool (P),draw a couple of
horizontal lines with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) and position them
below the foreground. Take your time, and once you’re done, move on to the next
step.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Add some variation to the water by drawing
some waves using a couple of slightly jagged lines, which we will position between the ones that we created in the previous step.

Once you’re done,
select and group all of the water lines together using the Control-G keyboard shortcut, locking the current layer and moving
on to the next one.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

18. How
to Create the Sky Lines

Once we’ve finished working on the lower
section of the illustration, it’s time to start working on the upper one, where
we will create the little sky lines and clouds.

Step 1

As we did with the
water, grab the Pen Tool (P) and
draw a couple of 4 px thick Stroke lines (#282020) above and between the illustration’s buildings. Take your time, and once you’re done, move on to the next step.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 2

Start working on the
clouds by creating a 12 x 12 px ellipse
with an 8 px thick Stroke (#282020) (1) and then
positioning a slightly larger 20 x 20 px
ellipse (#282020) onto its upper right side so that its left anchor point overlaps the top one of the smaller shapes (2).

Adjust the first shape by removing its bottom and
right halves, and then the larger shape by removing just its bottom one, uniting
the resulting paths using the Control-J keyboard
shortcut (3). Extend the paths into each direction using the Pen Tool (P) (4) and then draw a pair
of horizontal strokes and position them underneath (5), selecting and grouping (Control-G) all the shapes together afterwards.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Step 3

Create a couple of variations of the cloud
using either a larger or smaller pair of circles, and then position them around
the buildings at different heights.

Once you’re done,
select and group all of the sky’s composing shapes together using the Control-G keyboard shortcut, locking
the current layer before moving on to the last section.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

19. How
to Create the Background

We’re almost there! All we need to do
in order to finish this illustration is add the two colored rectangles making
up its background. That being said, make sure you’re on the right layer (that
would be the first one) and let’s wrap things up.

Create two 258 x 520 px rectangles, which we will
color using #f96a53, and then individually select and align them to the sides
of the frame.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

It’s a Wrap!

This is probably one of the longest
tutorials I’ve done in a long time, but I really hope that most of you managed
to stay with me until the end, since I believe the result pays off.

That being said, I
hope that you’ve found the steps easy to follow and most importantly learned
something new along the way.

How to Create a Toronto Skyline Illustration in Adobe Illustrator