illustrator cs6: cut through multiple layers with top layer

I have a vector with multiple layers, through all of which I want to cut through using the top-most layer’s shape so that there is a transparent void through the entire design.

So far I have been copying and pasting the top shape and using the “Minus from front” option in the Pathfinder to achieve the desired result. However, for a design with 20+ layers to cut through, this process gets tediously mundane.

I have tried to “Minus from front” through entire groups of layers, but way more than just the outline of the top layer’s shape seems to get removed. So I am wondering if there is a way to cut through groups of layers in one foul swoop, and if so how can it be done?

I am basically creating picture frames, so that I can open them in GIMP/photoshop and simply put layers of photos underneath the rasterized vectors.


I could suggest you another method for your end product.
You Could use clipping mask for creating Void in your entire design.

How to Do this?

  1. Group all your Objects or layers except the top layer which you want to create void

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  1. Create another object above your design that covers all your artwork and with the help of pathfinder select the void object and minus from current object

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  1. Now select your grouped object and the top object then Right click and select Make clipping mask

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Source : Link , Question Author : nanker , Answer Author : Rishab

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