Create A Neon Glowing Wave in Adobe Illustrator


This tutorial will guide you to the process of Creating Neon Glowing Wave in Adobe Illustrator.

Creating vector waves has always been quiet challenging until followed by the correct process. In this tutorial I will go through how to create waves, use blend modes and other techniques to give the waves a stylish neon glowing look.

Advantage of creating it in vector is that it can be scaled to any size without loss of quality.

Software used: Adobe Illustrator CS5


Here is the final output which we will be getting:

Final Preview


Step 1



Open Illustrator and create a new document. Select Rectangle Tool(M) and create a rectangle of size Width 2 inch and Height 1.5 inch.


Step 2


Fill the rectangle with gradient. And give the Color on left slider R=8, G=44, B=88 and on the right slider pure Black.  Select the Type as Radial and adjust gradient by selecting Gradient Tool or pressing G on keyboard.


Step 3


Select Pen Tool(P) and create two wave lines as shown in figure. Keep the stroke weight of the lines at 0.5 pt. Adjust the stoke using Direct Selection tool(A) untill you get a smooth wave look.


Step 4


After adjusting the stroke lines give them color.

Give white color to the first path and Blue shade(#0091E6) on the second path.


Step 5


Now we will blend the two lines.

At First we will specify the blend steps by going to Object>Blend>Blend Options.

In Spacing list select Specified Steps and set the steps to 100, you can play with the blending steps as you want but in this case we will go with 100.

Hit Ok.

Now we will blend the two path by going Object>Blend>Make or hit shortcut Alt+Ctrl+B

This creates a smooth gradient style look as shown in the image below.


Step 6


Right Click the blend object and select Isolate Select Group. Inside the group, select the second path and adjust it as shown in figure.

Now move out of the isolated group by double clicking in any empty area.


Step 7


After Step 6 we will expand the path object goto Object>Expand

This will separate all the blend steps invidually.


Step 8


This expanded object is now grouped by default. We will ungroup the object by Right Click and choose ungroup or can hit Shift+Ctrl+G in keyboard. This will help us to apply the blending modes individually in every path in that object which we will do in the next step.


Step 9


Place the object above the box which we have created in starting. Now select the entire path objects and give them Blending mode as Overlay. So, what overlay do here is that it creates a glowing effect by blending all the paths with each other.


Also lower the opacity to about 30% in this case (you can still play with opacity). Re-group the paths.

And you get awesome neon glowing wave effect.



Step 10

Use Make Clipping Mask to remove unwanted objects which are outside the box.

Here is the Final Image which we will get.

Final Image


Thanks for watching the tutorial.

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About Author

DezineGuide is a Blog dedicated to Graphic Designers and Web Developers giving them Professional Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, Freebies, Inspirations and much more.

  • Chevsy

    Awesome Just what I was after

  • Scribbles

    Now that the colors for the wave are perfect, how do I keep the color values if I want to delete the rectangle gradient in the back?

    • dezineguide

      No, the effect will not work if you delete the background. Consider the rectangle as a supporting object for this effect.

  • Alamin_01713

    very nice boss. This is very help full for every designer.

  • Pfft.

    Tutorials are usually made for people who haven’t used much/at all of Illustrator. Try thinking that next time. Failed for me.

  • cr9

    any reason why when using the pen tool to draw the wave it is being filled automatically with the color of the rectagle??