This lesson is for Adobe Illustrator, but it may work in other vector programs as well. These are two basic text lessons that should help you out if you are new to Illustrator and want to create some great text effects.
How to correctly outline type
Depending on the typeface you use, you can really screw up the original shape of a font when you stroke it using the default stroke in Illustrator. If you use a typeface with narrow areas, you will have problems when stroking. Fat typefaces, San Serifs, normally don’t have much of a problem. If you do have a need to use a narrow font, or a font that has narrow areas, here is what you can do to solve the shape problems.
You don’t have to be blind to see that this looks bad. When you print this it may even look worse.
To fix this problem, you need to create your type and create outlines for it. TYPE-CREATE OUTLINES. Then, copy and paste to create a second set of letters. You may want to group them together to make sure they stay perfectly together (CTRL+G) If you want a 1.5 stroke around the outside of your letters, then double the number to 3. You will then stroke the letters in the front with a 3.0 stroke. Then send backward by OBJECT-ARRANGE-SEND BACKWARD.
Align the letters up either by eye, or using your Align tools. You will see that the unaltered letters keep the original shape, and since it is aligned properly, the stroke is on both sides.
How to create a sheared shadow
If you want to create a great shadow, you only need to do a few steps to get it right. First, you create the type that you want to create a shadow for and make it a light color. Then, you will copy and paste it to create a second layer. Next, change that color to a dark color. Then using your shear tool, you will hold ALT and click once on the layer you will shear.
I typed in -10 to get this slant, and you can change it to fit your needs. Then OBJECT-ARRANGE-SEND BACKWARD. I lined it up by using my eye this time to make sure it looks correct. You can see they are not aligned perfectly.
If you want to create a more dramatic effect, you should make the shadow with a gradient fill. First, TYPE-CREATE OUTLINES.
Then use your gradient tool to change the gradient. To adjust your color, use the gradient palette. Again, you may want to group the letters to prevent them moving around, or edit them individually with the gradient tool.
Author: Gina Hutchings
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Chicago Web Design