How to Make a 3D Bar Chart in Illustrator

You can turn any graphic into stunning 3D with Illustrator. In this post we show you how to make a 3d bar chart in illustrator. This will help your presentations and infographics stand out.

How to Make a 3D Bar Chart in Illustrator

Making any 3D graphic in Illustrator is pretty easy. You don’t have to create the graphic in other software and then place it in Illustrator. Illustrator provides the tools to create the graphic. You can also import data into Illustrator to create the graphic and then convert it to 3D. The nice thing about making a 3D graphic in Illustrator is the ability to do it for new and previously created graphics.

  1. Open and prepare Illustrator
  2. Create or open the graphic in Illustrator
  3. Select chart elements
  4. Add 3D effect
  5. Save

1]Open and prepare Illustrator

The first step to making any graphic in 3D is to open and set up Illustrator. Click on the Illustrator icon and then wait for it to open. When Illustrator opens, go to File and then New (Ctrl + N) to open a new document. The New Document Options window will appear and you can choose the options you want and then click OK.

2]Create or open the graphic in Illustrator

Create a chart from scratch

Now it’s time to create the chart from scratch. This article will show you how to create graphics in Illustrator <<(enlace al artículo – “cómo crear gráficos en Illustrator”)>>>. With the chart created, add color to the elements (bars if it’s a bar chart or slices if it’s a pie chart). The colors will make it easier to see the different areas of data.

Open previously created regular chart

If you have an Illustrator document with a graphic already created, you just need to find it, click and open it. You can also open Illustrator and then go to Archive so Open don’t press Ctrl+Othen browse for the Illustrator file, click and open it.

With the graphic now in Illustrator, whether you created it from scratch or opened a previously created one, it’s time to render the graphic in 3D.

3]Select the chart elements

In this step, just before you make the chart in 3D, you’ll need to decide if you want to make the chart and the legend (words and symbols that help you interpret the chart) in 3D as well.

If you want to make everything 3D, just click on the graphic with the selection tool and continue to the Add 3D effect step.

If you want to make only the data items on the chart 3D without affecting the legend, you will need to select the direct selection tool from the left tool panel. With the direct selection active tool, click and drag around the chart, excluding the elements you don’t want to make 3D.

4]Add 3D effect

This is the interesting part, this is where the 3D graph is made. The previous step is where you decided which part of the chart you want to make 3D, either the entire chart (images, captions, and words) or just the image section of the chart. Below you’ll see what each of these will look like, and then you can decide what you want to do for your chart.

All graphic elements in 3D

As explained above, you just need to make sure you have the normal selection tool active, then click on the graphic and add the 3D effect.

How to make any graphic 3D in Illustrator - top menu 3d effect

With the chart selected, go to the top menu bar and click on Effect so 3D so Extrude and bevel.

How to make any graphic 3D in Illustrator - 3D extrusion 1

The 3D Bevel and Extrude Options window will appear. Be sure to check Advance so you can see the live changes happening on the chart as you change the options.

Look for Position and you will see an arrow for a drop down menu where you can adjust the 3D graph. You can also click on the visual representation of the 3D (cube in a circle) and use your mouse to drag and adjust it. This will adjust the angle of the 3D graph.

How to make any 3D graphic in Illustrator - 3d effect - all graphics - color legend

This is the chart with everything done in 3D. The categories are placed below the corresponding bars. This is done by clicking the Transpose/Columns of Rows option in the data window.

How to make any graphic 3D in Illustrator - 3d effect - all graphics without color legend

This is the chart with everything done in 3D but the legend and categories are different. This is done by keeping the horizontal categories in the data table with the corresponding numbers below each.

Only graphic made in 3D

This part will show you how the chart will look if the legend and text are not made in 3D. You may want only the body of the chart to be 3D for your project.

How to make any 3D graphic in Illustrator - 3d effect - bars only

This is what the bar chart looks like when rendered in 3D with all other elements unchanged.

How to make any 3D chart in Illustrator - 3d effect - bars only - categories below bar

This is the bar chart with the categories below the corresponding bar with only the bars rendered in 3D.

How to make any 3D graph in Illustrator - 3d effect - 3D bars and categories

This is what the chart would look like if the bars and categories were made 3D. In order for the X and Y axis line to remain unchanged, you will need to change the bars and category names separately. Use the Direct Selection Tool to select the bars and then switch to 3D, then repeat the steps for the category names.

How to make any chart 3D in Illustrator - 3d effect - bars and legend swatches only

This is the graph with the bars and the legend samples made in 3D.

5]Export to use in other software

This is where you can use your 3D graphic in other software such as Powerpoint, Microsoft Word, and others. To save for use, you will need to use the export option.

To export the 3D graph, go to the top menu bar and press File and then Export.

The Export window will appear, here you will choose the save location, name the file if you want, and choose the file format. When all of this is done, choose Save. You can save the file as a JPEG to make it smaller and easier to share. You can also save it as a PNG, which will be slightly larger but better quality and will have no background.

Read: How to Create a 3D Globe with World Map in Illustrator

How can I customize a graphic in Illustrator?

You can customize a graphic that is already created in Illustrator. Right click on the graph and you will see that you can customize the Guy, Dataeither Design. If you click Type, you will be able to change the type of chart that is there (for example, a bar chart can be converted to a pie chart). If you click on Data, you will see the data window with the information for the chart you have. You can edit the data and then click Apply to change the chart. If you choose Layout you will get an error. Note that if your chart is 3D and you customize it, the chart will revert to being flat. You will need to make it 3D again after you customize it. That’s why it’s important to get the graphic right before doing it in 3D.

How can I scale a graphic in Illustrator?

You can scale a graphic in Illustrator with the Scale tool. Select the chart, and then select the Scale tool in the menu bar on the left. You can then drag the chart to scale it. you can also try a different method. With the scale tool active, press Alt while clicking on the graph. The scale options window will appear, here you can choose the percentage by which you want to scale the graph. You can also choose if you want to scale the strokes and effects. When you have finished choosing, press Copy either OK.

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James D. Brown
James D. Brown
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