Tutorial

Linear Gradients in SVG

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Even though realistically most of the time you’ll be creating SVG files using tools like Adobe Illustrator instead of coding them by hand, some SVG features are easy to implement by hand to give your images the extra pop. Linear gradients is one such feature.

Let’s learn with an example. Here’s our base crossbones image:

Base SVG image

And here’s the SVG markup for it. I’ve simplified by changing the path data with …:

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" viewBox="0 0 200 200">
  <style>.bones{fill:#ccc ;} .eye{fill:#666;}</style>

  <path class="bones" d="..."/>

  <path class="bones" d="..."/>

  <g>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
  </g>
</svg>

Now here’s a version with an orange gradient:

SVG linear gradient example 1

And here’s the markup. Notice the highlighted sections and the defs, linearGradient and stop elements:

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" viewBox="0 0 200 200">
  <style>.eye{fill:#F9EC31;}</style>

  <defs>
    <linearGradient id="bones-gradient" x1="0%" y1="0%" x2="100%" y2="0%">
      <stop offset="0%" style="stop-color:#FF9133;" />
      <stop offset="100%" style="stop-color:#FF0015;" />
    </linearGradient>
  </defs>

  <g fill="url(#bones-gradient)">
      <path class="bones" d="..."/>
      <path class="bones" d="..."/>
  </g>

  <g>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
  </g>
</svg>

Now a version with multiple color stops and the use of stop-opacity. Also notice the use of fill-opacity for the eyes:

SVG linear gradient example 2

And the markup for it:

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" viewBox="0 0 200 200">
  <style>.eye{fill:#211533; fill-opacity: 0.5;}</style>

  <defs>
    <linearGradient id="bones-gradient" x1="0%" y1="0%" x2="100%" y2="0%">
      <stop offset="0%" style="stop-color:#f8f8f8;stop-opacity:0.5" />
      <stop offset="50%" style="stop-color:#fc00ff;stop-opacity:1" />
      <stop offset="100%" style="stop-color:#f8f8f8;stop-opacity:0.5" />
    </linearGradient>
  </defs>

  <g fill="url(#bones-gradient)">
      <path class="bones" d="..."/>

      <path class="bones" d="..."/>
  </g>

  <g>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
  </g>
</svg>

And finally in this last example we use a different angle for the gradient:

SVG linear gradient example 3

Here’s the markup:

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" viewBox="0 0 200 200">
  <style>.eye{fill:#F9EC31;}</style>

  <defs>
    <linearGradient id="bones-gradient" x1="0%" y1="0%" x2="50%" y2="100%">
      <stop offset="0%" style="stop-color:blue;" />
      <stop offset="100%" style="stop-color:#FF0015;" />
    </linearGradient>
  </defs>

  <g fill="url(#bones-gradient)">
      <path class="bones" d="..."/>

      <path class="bones" d="..."/>
  </g>

  <g>
    <path class="eye" d="...."/>
    <path class="eye" d="..."/>
  </g>
</svg>

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