Create a Battery Meter Icon in Adobe Illustrator

In the following tutorial you will learn how to create a simple battery meter icon in Adobe Illustrator.


For starters you will learn how to set up a simple grid and how to create the main shapes using the Snap to Grid feature, the Rectangle Tool, the Rounded Corners effect and the Pathfinder panel.

Moving on, you will learn how to quickly create and save a simple pattern. Taking full advantage of the Appearance panel you will learn how to add shading, highlights and a subtle glow for your shapes.

Finally, you’ll be surprised how easy it can be to recolor your final design.


Final Image

As always, this is the final image that we’ll be creating:

Battery Meter Icon


Tutorial Details

  • Program: Adobe Illustrator CC
  • Estimated Completion Time: 45 minutes
  • Difficulty: Beginner-Intermediate

Step 1

Hit Control + N to create a new document. Select Pixels from the Units drop-down menu, enter 600 in the width and height boxes and then click the Advanced button. Select RGB, Screen (72ppi) and make sure that the Align New Objects to Pixel Grid box is unchecked before you click OK.

Enable the Grid (View > Show Grid) and the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). For starters you will need a grid every 5 px, so simply go to Edit > Preferences > Guides > Grid, enter 5 in the Gridline every box and 1 in the Subdivisions box. Try not to get discouraged by all that grid, it will ease your work and keep in mind that you can easily enable or disable it using the Control + " keyboard shortcut.

You should also open the Info panel (Window > Info) for a live preview with the size and position of your shapes. Do not forget to set the unit of measurement to pixels from Edit > Preferences > Units > General. All these options will significantly increase your work speed.

Battery Meter Icon 1


Step 2

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and focus on your Toolbar. Remove the color from the stroke then select the fill and set its color to R=30 G=30 B=35.

Create a 195 x 110 px rectangle and place it in the center of your artboard. Make sure that this new shape stays selected and go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 15 px Radius and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 2


Step 3

Using the same tool, create a 30 x 50 px shape and fill it with R=30 G=30 B=35. Place this new rectangle as shown below and then go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 5 px Radius and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 3


Step 4

Reselect both shapes made so far and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Make sure that the resulting shapes remain selected, open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click the Unite button. In the end, your new shape should look like that in the second image.

Battery Meter Icon 4


Step 5

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 610 px square and fill it with R=35 G=35 B=40. Make sure that this new shape covers your entire artboard and then send it to back using the Shift + Control + [ keyboard shortcut.

Battery Meter Icon 5


Step 6

Select the battery shape and open the Appearance panel (Window > Appearance). Select the existing fill and go to Effect > Stylize > Outer Glow. Enter the attributes shown in the following image and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 6


Step 7

Make sure that your battery shape stays selected, keep focusing on the Appearance panel and add a second fill using the Add New Fill button.

Select this new fill, set its color to R=30 G=30 B=35 and then go to Effect > Stylize > Inner Glow. Enter the attributes shown below, click the OK button and then go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the properties shown in the left window (in the following image), click the OK button and then go again to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the attributes shown in the right window and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 7


Step 8

Make sure that your battery shape stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel. Select the stroke, set its color to black (R=0 G=0 B=0) and then click that "Stroke" piece of text to open the Stroke fly-out panel. Set the Weight to 3 px, check the Align Stroke to Inside button and then return to the Appearance panel.

Expand your stroke by clicking that little arrow icon and then click the "Opacity" piece of text to open the Transparency fly-out panel. Simply lower the Opacity to 5%.

Battery Meter Icon 8


Step 9

Next, you will learn how to create and save a simple pattern. You will need a grid every 1 px, so go to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid and enter 1 in the Gridline every box.

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create two, 1 px squares, fill both shapes with black and place them exactly as shown in the following image.

Make sure that these new shapes are selected and drag them inside the Swatches panel (Window > Swatches) to save them as a pattern.

Battery Meter Icon 9


Step 10

Return to gridline every 5 px, so go to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid and enter 5 in the Gridline every box.

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 25 x 80 px shape, fill it with the linear gradient shown below and place it as shown in the following image.

Battery Meter Icon 10


Step 11

Make sure that your newest rectangle stays selected, focus on the Appearance panel and add a second fill using that same Add New Fill button.

Select this new fill, set its color to R=140 G=255 B=63 and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1 px Offset, click the OK button and then go to Effect > Stylize > Inner Glow. Enter the attributes shown below, click the OK button and then go to Effect > Stylize > Outer Glow. Enter the properties shown below and click OK.

Battery Meter Icon 11


Step 12

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new fill, drag it in the bottom of the panel and fill it with the linear gradient shown below. Keep in mind that the white numbers from the Gradient image stand for Location percentage while the yellow ones stand for Opacity percentage.

Keep focusing on this newly added fill, change its Blending Mode to Soft Light and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1 px Offset, click the OK button and then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Drag the Move-Vertical slider to 15 px and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 12


Step 13

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new fill, drag it in the top of the panel and fill it with the radial gradient shown below. Remember that the yellow number from the Gradient image stand for Opacity percentage.

Keep focusing on this newly added fill, change its Blending Mode to Soft Light and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -8 px Offset and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 13


Step 14

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new fill, drag it in the top of the panel, change its Blending Mode to Soft Light and fill it with your pattern from the Swatches panel.

Battery Meter Icon 14


Step 15

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the existing stroke, fill it with the linear gradient shown below, change its Blending Mode to Multiply and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1 px Offset, click the OK button.

Return to the Appearance panel open the Stroke fly-out panel. Increase the Weight to 3 px and check the Align Stroke to Inside button.

Battery Meter Icon 15


Step 16

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new stroke using the Add New Stroke button, drag it in the top of the panel and fill it with the linear gradient shown below. Don’t forget that the yellow numbers from the Gradient image stand for Opacity percentage.

Keep focusing on this newly added stroke, change its Blending Mode to Multiply and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1 px Offset, click the OK button.

Open the Stroke fly-out panel. Leave the Weight at 1 px and check the Align Stroke to Inside button.

Battery Meter Icon 16


Step 17

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new stroke, drag it in the top of the panel, lower its Opacity to 10% and set the color to R=140 G=255 B=63.

Open the Stroke fly-out panel for this new stroke, increase the Weight to 2 px and check the Align Stroke to Outside button.

Battery Meter Icon 17


Step 18

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new stroke and drag it in the top of the panel. Lower its Opacity to 30%, change the Blending Mode to Soft Light and set the color to black (R=0 G=0 B=0).

Open the Stroke fly-out panel for this new stroke, leave the Weight at 1 px and check the Align Stroke to Outside button.

Battery Meter Icon 18


Step 19

Make sure that your rectangle stays selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new stroke, drag it in the top of the panel and fill it with the linear gradient shown below. Keep focusing on this newly added stroke, change its Blending Mode to Soft Light and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -4 px Offset, click the OK button.

Open the Stroke fly-out panel. Keep the Weight at 1 px and check the Align Stroke to Inside button.

Battery Meter Icon 19


Step 20

Reselect your rectangle and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Make sure that the entire path is selected (click the "Path" piece of text from the top of the panel) and go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 5 px Radius and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 20


Step 21

Multiply your rectangle and spread the copies as shown in the following image.

Battery Meter Icon 21


Step 22

Select your rightmost rectangle and focus on the Appearance panel.

Expand the green fill, select the Inner Glow and Outer Glow effects and simply remove them using the Delete Selected Item button.

Battery Meter Icon 22


Step 23

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the bottom fill and lower its Opacity to 70%.

Battery Meter Icon 23


Step 24

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the second fill from the bottom and replace the existing linear gradient with the one shown in the following image.

Battery Meter Icon 24


Step 25

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Add a new fill, make it black and place it right above the green one. Keep focusing on this new fill, lower its Opacity to 70%, change the Blending Mode to Multiply and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1 px Offset and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 25


Step 26

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the fifth fill from the bottom and lower its Opacity to 50%.

Battery Meter Icon 26


Step 27

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the patterned fill and lower its Opacity to 30%.

Battery Meter Icon 27


Step 28

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the green stroke and lower its Opacity to 10%.

Battery Meter Icon 28


Step 29

Make sure that your rightmost rectangle is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel.

Select the top stroke and replace the existing linear gradient with the one shown in the following image.

Battery Meter Icon 29


Step 30

Copy the Appearance attributes used for your rightmost rectangle and paste them into the adjacent rectangle.

Battery Meter Icon 30


Step 31

Switch to gridline every 1 px, so go to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid and enter 1 in the Gridline every box.

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create two, 1 x 70 px shapes and place them exactly as shown in the following image.

Fill both shapes with white and turn them into a simple compound path using the Control + 8 keyboard shortcut.

Battery Meter Icon 31


Step 32

Keep focusing on your compound path, change its Blending Mode to Overlay and replace the existing fill color with the linear gradient shown in the following image.

Battery Meter Icon 32


Step 33

Make sure that your compound path is still selected and go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Drag the Move-Horizontal slider to 35 px, enter 4 in the Copies box and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 33


Step 34

Reselect the square that makes up your background, focus on the Appearance panel and add a second fill.

Make it black, lower its Opacity to 10%, change the Blending Mode to Multiply and then go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the attributes shown below and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 34


Step 35

Make sure that your background shape is still selected, keep focusing on the Appearance panel and add a third fill.

Drag it in the top of the panel and fill it with the radial gradient shown in the following image. Remember that the yellow zero from the Gradient image stands for Opacity percentage and use the Gradient Tool (G) to adjust the size of the gradient directly on the artboard.

Battery Meter Icon 35


Step 36

Finally, you can use the Recolor Artwork feature to quickly recolor your final icon.

Simply select the battery shape and the five rectangles and then go to Edit > Edit Colors > Recolor Artwork. Replace the green with the color that you prefer and then click the OK button.

Battery Meter Icon 36

Battery Meter Icon 37


And We’re Done!

Here is how it should look. I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and can apply these techniques in your future projects.

Battery Meter Icon