When you’re new to Illustrator, it can be a little difficult at first to tell exactly where a particular tool is going to start drawing when you click with your mouse. To get a better feel for positioning these tools, select the Pen, Pencil, or Brush tools, and take a look at the tool’s icon. Then press the Caps Lock on your keyboard which changes the tool from the icon view to cross hairs. When you click with your mouse, the tool will start drawing where the cross hairs meet. Switching back and forth between the icon view of the tools and the cross hairs will give a better feel for the tool and where to click when using the icon view. Most users prefer the icon view because it’s easy to tell what tool is selected.
Tip provided by Jeff Witchel, Certified Adobe® Training Provider.