1 person found this helpful
Yu are probably opening an image file such as a tiff or jpg or psd rather than file New and then placing the image in that document.
The reason is that AI cannot access the color information of the raster image only the profile therefore there are no no colors or brushes associated with the document but if you create a new document that is based on an existing preset document and that is why it has brushes, swatches, etc.
If by any chance you are creating a new document by going to the File>New then I would say you may have overwritten by accident the default preset document.
Youwill know this by going to Users/Username/Library/Application Support/Adobe Illustrator CS 4/en_US/New Document Profile and open the one called Print. If there are swatches then it has not been over written.
This is nott to my knowledge affected by corrupt preferences. Beyond this I could not advice you.
Thanks for the troubleshooting tips. I had opened an image in ILL, then deleted it and went about my business - totally forgetting that the project file had been set for an image like you said. So I copied my paths, created a new Print document, pasted and works fine. Whew! Learned one on that.
Mark the thread answered not necessary to award points.