Copy To Adobe Illustrator

This CorelDRAW/Corel DESIGNER macro set allows to easily exchange graphics between CorelDRAW, Corel DESIGNER and Adobe products such as Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign and others via the system clipboard.

The macros can copy CorelDRAW objects onto the clipboard in a number of Adobe file formats such as:

  • Adobe Illustrator (AICB)
  • Portable Document Format (PDF)
  • Encapsulated PostScript (EPS)

Each format has its own advantages and limitations. Adobe Illustrator clipboard format is most portable and is understood by most Adobe applications as well as those of some other vendors.

The macros can also paste graphics placed onto the clipboard in one of the above formats into a CorelDRAW document, thus making it possible to copy and paste objects between CorelDRAW and, say, Adobe Illustrator without having to export and import files.

The macro set contains the following macros:

  • CopyAIFormat
  • PasteAIFormat
  • PasteAISpecial
  • Setup


This macro copies the currently selected objects in the CorelDRAW document onto the system clipboard in one or more of Adobe data formats as specified in the preferences dialog (see the Setup macro below). If all three data formats are enabled, then each time an object is copied, three different copies of it in different formats are placed onto the clipboard, thus ensuring that the most number of applications can understand that data and paste it into their document.

However placing each document in three data formats takes some time and if performance is important and if you work with a particular application which can understand only one of the available data formats reliably, you can enable only one format and thus cut down on the time needed to copy the selection onto the clipboard.


Launching this macro shows the data format selection for the copy operation as explained above. Changes made in this dialog will be applied to all consecutive copying until changed again.

Adobe Illustrator file format is the native clipboard file format for Adobe Illustrator 7 and 8. It is also recognized by the later version of Adobe Illustrator (9, 10, 11/CS) as well as Adobe Photoshop when pasting vector objects on Photoshop's vector layers or clipping paths.

PDF is the format used by the later Adobe Illustrator versions (9, 10, 11/CS). It is also recognized by Adobe InDesign and possibly other Adobe applications.

EPS can be used by some applications which recognize neither Illustrator nor PDF formats.

Please note that each file format has its own restrictions. For example, objects with fills and outlines copied in PDF format will be pasted as two separate objects - one with outline and no fill and the other with no outline and a fill. In most cases, Adobe Illustrator format should be the most compatible. But with some experimenting you should be able to chose the format that suits you the best.

There is an option to convert all text to curves before exporting. This is especially useful which copying vector art into Photoshop as a clipping path since Photoshop requires that all text be converted to curves before pasting.


Pastes the graphics placed onto the clipboard in one of the three recognized formats into the current CorelDRAW document.

If the data is present in more than one format on the clipboard, the macro attempts to pick the first recognizable format in the following order:

  1. Adobe Illustrator
  2. PDF
  3. EPS

Please note that EPS data format is not available under CorelDRAW 10 due to some limitations of EPS import filter in CorelDRAW 10.

Also note that Adobe Illustrator CS (and probably Illustrator 9 and 10) use PDF v1.4 format. CorelDRAW 10 and 11 have hard time importing this PDF version and fail most of the time. However CorelDRAW 12+ seems to do a much better job at this. If you want to copy objects from Adobe Illustrator and paste them into CorelDRAW, you should either use CorelDRAW 12 (and up) for this, or enable AICB clipboard format in the Clipboard Preferences dialog of Adobe Illustrator.


If the data format chosen by PasteAIFormat doesn't yield a satisfactory results when objects are pasted, you can pick an alternative format of the three. For example, if you copy an object from Adobe Illustrator, it will place the data in all three format. Pasting the objects with PasteAIFormat will choose AICB data format. If it doesn't look right in CorelDRAW, you might want to choose PDF or even EPS data format instead. You should use this macro in that case.

When launched, a Paste Special dialog will appear:

It will show all the data formats currently available on the clipboard. Pick the format you want and click OK to paste the objects.

If you have a question about installing or using this macro or any other related question, please post them in the forum.

Download Copy To Adobe Illustrator macros for CorelDRAW 10/11/12/X3/X4:

Download Copy To Adobe Illustrator macros for Corel DESIGNER 10/12:

See installation instructions.

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Copyright 2008 by Alex Vakulenko. All rights reserved.
This page was last revised on 05/21/08.