Illustrator Tutorial: Draw a Celtic Triquetra Knot Design in Illustrator


The triquetra knot motif is a triangular knotwork motif that can be found in many cultures in The World, and the name comes from the Latin tri “three” and quetrus “cornered”; it is also perhaps more widely known as a trefoil (three-leaf) or trinity knot. The design has many associations—mainly with religions—from the ancient Celts, Christianity, Paganism and even Norse mythology, bearing some similarity with Odin’s symbol, the valknut, and this simple motif can form the basis of many other designs too.

Drawing knotwork in Illustrator is made a lot easier using the Shape-Builder Tool, Shaper Tool and Live Paint toolset, as you only have to draw the path, then let the Appearance Panel and the shaping toolset do most of the work for you! Once you have learned the technique, you should find it relatively easy to replicate other knotwork designs and create your own.knot2 goldKnotworkknot3

Draw a Celtic Knotwork Motif in Illustrator

Wrapping Up

Make sure that you inspect the results because—as with any automatic functions—sometimes the odd glitch creeps in (almost exclusively down to the way the original paths were made) and you may need to clean up here and there. Fortunately Illustrator CC2015 allows you to zoom in to 64,000% so it’s a lot easier to inspect even tiny details. You may not have noticed in the video, but if you look closely towards the end you’ll see that a few fragments have crept in—but these were cleaned up in less than ten minutes with the Shape-Builder Tool (to merge areas) and the Pen Tool (to remove errant points).


New Auto Mock-Ups Feature in Comp CC

Comp CC continues to grow and today has added more new features to extend the capabilities of the app:


  • Auto Mock-ups—if you need a quick mock-up to show how your app/web design/iPad project or even print project then there are at least a couple of different mock-up images applied to each of those formats (web has five) to help you sell the idea to stakeholders without having to wait to get back to the desktop
  • Edit Multiple Selections—when you have multiple objects or a group selected you can change common attributes like colour, opacity or font easily; there’s a also a new way to select multiple objects by tapping and long holding on an object while tapping others to select others; see this short (and silent) movie:
  • Use Your Own Fonts—if you have third party fonts installed on your device, you can now use those as well as the Typekit/device fonts—fantastic if you have a corporate font to use on your projects
  • Keyboard Shortcuts—yep, just like on an er, computer! When you have a connected keyboard attached to your iPad then you can nudge with the arrow keys, duplicate and zoom using that

IMG_0743IMG_0747IMG_0749 Do share and rate the app—it really does encourage the teams that work so hard to make this app as awesome as it is!

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