Adobe Illustrator CC 2018 Text Effects

In Adobe Illustrator, Tutorials by Jason Secrest

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In this Adobe Illustrator CC Text Effect tutorial we will be going through a new process on giving you the completed built resource so we can spend time just applying the effects. This does cover quite a few of the most common questions I get in Illustrator from compound paths, pathfinder, and the appearance panel. I really enjoy doing these, make sure you leave a comment on YouTube if you have any text effects or suggestions.

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Offset Paths can go inside or outside of a shape. They are different from adding on a stroke since they are already in shape form rather than a stroke which has to be expanded. This is great for immediate use in pathfinder.


We will be using Pathfinder Merge to clean up some simple overlapping that occurs when creating a drop shadow which will soon be your favorite Pathfinder trick. We will also Minus Front when creating our highlight shape.


The appearance panel does quite a bit in this tutorial. We will be adding effects such as a drop shadow. We will also be adding strokes aligned to the outside and a layer style to a 2nd fill with a gradient.


Offset Path Background Shape

1. Duplicate out the shape layer. Color the layer below off white. Select Object – Path – Offset Path. Make the Offset Path .15 inches with rounded corners. Select All and Unite using Pathfinder. Fill in any stay gaps.

Drop Shadow using Shapes

3. Duplicate the main text color by edit copy. Edit paste in BACK. While the text is still selected change the color to the light blue and make the shape a compound shape. Nudge the shape down with your cursor arrows. Select everything and click Pathfinder Merge to clean up the overlapping shapes. The stroke aligned to the outside will give us the gap.

Stylize Drop Shadow

2. Select the Background Offset shape we just created. Select Effect – Stylize – Drop Shadow. We want Multiply – A light gray color. Opacity 75% X: 0 Y: 0.1 Blur: 0.1

Highlight using 2 Compound Paths

4. Do this on its own layer above. Duplicate the main text shapes and create a slight Offset Path of -.035. While still selected change color and make a compound path. Object – Compound Path- Make. Copy Paste in FRONT. Make a compound shape and color the base color. Nudge down shape with your cursor. Select both shapes and click Minus Front in Pathfinder.

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