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Adobe Illustrator/Appearance panel out of sync with object


Appearance Panel not reflecting object current attributes
Appearance Panel not r  
I can't figure out how to get the appearance panel to reflect the current styling of strokes with an art brush applied.

I have objects that I've restyled (in the current case using art brushes), but while they look one way, they seem to invisibly retain their earlier styling. For example, one has a black art brush stroke applied, but in the appearance panel, it's previous red stroke color and thickness characteristics remain. And if I use the eyedropper on it to try to style another stroke to match its current black art brush stroke appearance, the new stroke instead gets the styling shown in the appearance panel, e.g., a red stroke.

Is this normal, or is my Illustrator install misbehaving?

Hi Allen,

This is a normal situation.

There are many levels of appearances when it comes to objects. There is your object (or group, compound path, etc.) appearance and then the individual path appearance. I see this issue more with text dealing text and character appearances, but this appears to be the same issue.

Try selecting your object with the selection tool first and see what the appearance is. Then deselect and try with the direct select tool. I'm guessing without knowing how this was built that the brush setting applied to the object or group OVER the original path settings. You just have to recreate the selection you had when applying the brush.

As for the eyedropper  it will always apply whatever is in the appearance panel.



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Kevin Stohlmeyer


I am an Adobe Certified Instructor, Adobe Community Professional and Adobe Freelance Professional. I travel nationally speaking on Adobe Creative Suite applications, including Illustrator and design. I can answer questions about Adobe Illustrator version CS1 through the all-new Creative Cloud.


I am an Adobe Certified Instructor for Adobe Illustrator and have been teaching this software in college/higher education and for an Adobe Authorized Training Center since 2000. I have been an active user of Adobe Illustrator as a professional graphic designer since 1994. I am also the author of the Adobe Illustrator Certified Expert Exam. I am a published author for Adobe Inspire Magazine, writing articles on Creative Suite applications including Photoshop, Illustrator and the Adobe Touch apps.

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