How to Remove Outside the Artboard in Adobe Illustrator

By Ken Burnside

Adobe Illustrator 10.0 or later

Things You'll Need

  • Adobe Illustrator's design paradigm has an artboard sized to the document you want the final artwork to be set at, and a lot of white space around it. This white space is useful for storing objects (vector graphic snippets) and work on them without interfering with other parts of the art. Once the artwork is complete, removing these objects can reduce the file size and speed performance in the application.

Step 1

Open your artwork in Illustrator.

Step 2

Make sure that all layers that you want to delete objects from are unlocked. (You can unlock and lock layers by clicking on the Layers tab at the right hand edge of the screen.)

Step 3

Click on the black arrow (Selection) tool in the toolbar.

Step 4

Enter "Ctrl+A" to select all objects in the art file. This will show that every object in the art file is selected.

Step 5

Hold down the shift key, click the left mouse button, and drag the cursor from the upper left hand corner of the artboard diagonally down to the lower right hand corner. This will de-select all the objects in the artboard while leaving all objects outside the artboard selected.

Step 6

Release the mouse button and the shift key.

Step 7

Press the "Delete" key. This will delete all selected objects.