Copy from Photoshop into a grid in Illustrator

I’m a biologist. What we often do we copy “spots” of yeast plates into Illustrator. The problem is, whenever I copy a “spot” from Photoshop it goes in some pretty random place in Illustrator. What would be great to be able to tell Illustrator to copy a spot into some grid, next to other spots, etc.

I use smart grids so it’s relatively easy to place new spots, however, it would be amazing to be able automatically to tell Illustrator where spots should go.

Is there any way to do it?

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The solution implemented as Action in Photoshop and in Illustrator actually can make it very easy and I can use only one key F2, and in total two mouse clicks and two f2 clicks. (In Photoshop I made “Copy” as an Action triggered by f2). See screencast at YouTube. Thank you!


When you copy and paste into Illustrator, the paste position is not random. It’s centred on the document window. I don’t know of any way to change that behaviour.

However, using that information, the following hacky solution is possible. Hopefully it might work for you:

If you can arrange it so that there are a blank squares in your grid in illustrator which are the same size as the content you are pasting, then you could select that object, then do CTRL++ (zoom in) followed immediately by CTRL+- (zoom out). This will centre the selected square in the view window.

Now when you paste CTRL+V it will be centred in the same location.

Here’s an example

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If you find that’s too many key presses, you could record an action so that the zoom in, zoom out, and paste menu items can be invoked by the press of a single function key. Here I set the action to be called by pressing F2

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This should help speed things up a bit

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Source : Link , Question Author : Marcin Magnus , Answer Author : Billy Kerr

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