Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Cup of Joe: Paths for Text

As promised a short how-to on getting text to follow a path. Long time readers may be thinking, didn't she cover this already? And yes in a way I did. Here's the link to a previous post where I discussed creating blocks of text in custom shapes using the pen tool in PS CS or by importing text paths into Elements. So all that is really different today is that instead of a block of text we are talking about a single line of text. The basic concept is the same: use the pen tool to create the path, then type the text onto the path.

The notebook paper in this LO is a digital element that included the I Love You because and the numbers 1-5. I added the sentiments making them follow the ruled paper this way...

Select the pen tool (it looks like the nib of an old fountain pen) then at the top of the page in the tool options bar set the tool to create paths (see the illustration)

That's the hard part, not hard is it? Now simply click two points to create the line you'd like the text to follow. In this case I clicked at the beginning and end of the blue line I wanted my text to appear written on.

Once the path is completed, select the type tool and click on the line. When you do this you will see a slash appear at the bottom of the type tool icon, indicating that your type will follow the path you created. Then type your sentiment and the text will automatically follow the line you drew. How cool is that?

This technique can also be used to create text that swirls or basically follows any path you can draw. For curves you will want to use the free form pen tool and a pen tablet would be a helpful thing to own. So for example you could do something like this: