Make gradient swatches global
Gradient swatches should be globally applicable. This would mean they´d need to be editable - either in Swatch Options just like other swatches or replacable by dragging a altered version of a gradient onto the old swatch. (At the moment, the only option is the swatch title)
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This trick actually does work on gradients as well. You do need to make sure you set your gradient up with global spot color. See attached, i hereby drag on color on a color i used as a stop.
It does update the gradient without the need to select everything, edit its color, save a new gradient and then apply it.
Much faster!!! Still learning stuff after 20 years hahaha
Alt + drag changes that gradient and basically makes a new one. This will only update globally if you select the gradient, then choose "select same fill". Check if everything is correctly selected, then do the update on that gradient and save a new one. Delete the old one.
As far as i know and everything i tried. You can edit a saved gradient. You can edit the colors, but its basically a new gradient which is not saved yet.
Its kind of weird that working with gradients is still very messy and not convenient
Paul Ragas commented
Thanks Emily Rose for the tip on option+dragging (Alt+dragging) an edited swatch onto the old swatch to change the old swatch. Still not sure why you can't edit the gradient swatch just like editing any other color in your swatches.
Emily Rose Lacy-Nichols commented
Hey, the following might help as a workaround, if anyone else is waiting for this feature.
In Ai CS6, you can do the same Alt+drag technique using either the "fill" or "stroke" box in the Gradient Palette (instead of an actual swatch from the Swatch Palette). This way, you don't have to create a new swatch for the altered gradient before Alt+dragging it onto the old swatch. Only saves a few keystrokes or mouse clicks, but they do add up.
(BTW: I second the request that gradient swatches be made global.)