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Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective? - Adobe Illustrator Windows

A client wants me to place text on an existing graphic. Graphic has a curved white path that tapers down at the top end. A JPEG of the graphic can be seen at: <http://www.mallomar.net/modern/xpathx.jpg> I'm using AI CS2, and want to find out if I can use it to do what the client wants: a paragraph of text (probably 4 or 5 lines) curved to fit on the white path, and tapering down so the characters become gradually smaller where the path narrows. Is this even possible?...

  1. #1

    Default Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    A client wants me to place text on an existing graphic. Graphic has a curved white path that tapers down at the top end. A JPEG of the graphic can be seen at: <http://www.mallomar.net/modern/xpathx.jpg>

    I'm using AI CS2, and want to find out if I can use it to do what the client wants: a paragraph of text (probably 4 or 5 lines) curved to fit on the white path, and tapering down so the characters become gradually smaller where the path narrows.

    Is this even possible?
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Like this?



    Step-by-Step:

    1. Envelope Distort>Make with Mesh
    2. Apply perspective to mesh using Free Transform tool (mouse down on upper right hand corner, start dragging downward and rightward as if to scale, then hold down Ctrl key [Mac Cmd] to do a perspective scale. Repeat with lower corner but don't drag upward as far as you did with the top corner, since the road flattens more at the top.

    At this stage, the object looks like this:

    3. Apply Warp>Arc live effect with bend of 16% and Horizontal distortion of -10%. This puts the curve in the road.
    4. Apply 3D Rotate with angles of 13 -5 30 and perspective of 120%. This flattens the top of the text backwards and rotates it at an angle.

    The mesh grid can still be manipulated after the Arc and Rotate effects are applied. And of course the text can still be edited.

    [Now Wade is really going to want to "do something about" me. :) ]
    Teri Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Teri,

    Awesome!! You know, I should really be turning over a percentage of my earnings to you. <g>

    That looks pretty much like what the client wants, although I suspect they won't like the largest type looking so stretched out. Maybe that's avoidable?

    And I must confess I don't know anything at all about envelopes or mesh. I gather than I need to enter the text first, then click on it and do the envelope distort thing. I will experiment with this.

    I thank you, and my mother thanks you.

    Marlene
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?



    although I suspect they won't like the largest type looking so stretched
    out. Maybe that's avoidable?




    Yes, you could limit that by first making a straight mesh, then doing a Make with Top Object Envelope Distort on that mesh with the top object being a rectangle where the right edge has been shrunk down by about one third to one half the factor that you are intending to shrink it for your final art, then Expanding that Envelope, then using the resulting mesh to do a Make with Top Object on the text object instead of a Make with Mesh.

    Then from there do the rest of the distortion with the perspective scale as before. Basically, you are getting part of your shrinking from a perspective-free distortion, where the verticals stay the same distance apart but just get shorter, and the rest of your shrinking from a perspective distortion, where the verticals get not only shorter but also closer together.

    The perspective distortion is more realistic, but not as readable. It may take some experimenting to get the balance between legibility and realism right.

    (You are already turning over a percentage of what you spend on Illustrator to me, in a way. So just keep those upgrade dollars coming. :) )
    Teri Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?


     
    a Make with Top Object Envelope Distort on that mesh with the top object
    being a rectangle where the right edge has been shrunk down by about one
    third to one half the factor that you are intending to shrink it for your
    final art, then Expanding that Envelope, then using the resulting mesh
    to do a Make with Top Object on the text object instead of a Make with
    Mesh. <<




    Okay, I have spent some time experimenting with this project and am still not getting the effect exactly the way I want it.

    I prefer your second method (above), since it doesn't stretch out the text as much, but I get lost after "Expanding that Envelope." When you mention "the resulting mesh" am I supposed to be actually seeing a mesh? (I don't.) And I can't "Make with Top Object" because it's telling me there is no top object.

    If I could figure out how to upload an image, I could show you how far I've gotten ...

    By the way, will the text be editable if I use this second method? It's really essential that I be able to edit the text, since this client is famous for making lots of text changes. Although I suppose if I hit on exactly the correct formula for creating the arc'ed type, I could write down the steps and do them over again every time the client makes changes.

    BTW, there are four of these publications, so I'd be going through this routine over and over for all four.

    Thanks,

    Marlene
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?



    .. but I get lost after "Expanding that Envelope." When you mention "the
    resulting mesh" am I supposed to be actually seeing a mesh? (I don't.)




    Probably you are skipping the step that says to first "make a straight mesh". I will go through the steps in more detail with pictures.

    Here I have made a "straight mesh" by dragging out a rectangle, and going to Object>Create Gradient Mesh...



    Here I have drawn a rectangle on top of that mesh and moved the right corners closer together. (The orange stroke is just to show you where it is.)



    Here I have selected both those objects, used the Envelope Distort>Make with Top Object command, followed by Envelope Distort>Expand, followed by Ungroup:



    Notice how the mesh grid has been scaled to be the same shape as the rectangle, but the vertical lines are still evenly spaced instead of being perspective scaled.

    Here is some text that I am going to apply that mesh grid to:



    Here is what it looks like after I move the distorted mesh on top of that text, and then apply the Envelope Distort>Make with Top Object command again:



    Notice how the text has distorted vertically to fit the mesh shape, but it hasn't scaled horizontally. That makes the characters look thinner at the left, since they've gotten taller without getting wider. But the perspective scale will correct that.

    From here on out, it is the same steps you used before. Here is how it looks after using the Free Transform tool to apply a perspective scale:



    This time for variety I will apply a Flag Warp effect instead of Arc:



    And after applying the 3D Rotate effect to tilt the image backwards:



    By the way, will the text be editable if I use this second method?




    Yes. Both the text and the effect options are still editable. To edit the text, you will need to go to Envelope Distort>Edit Contents. Since the text tools do their hit testing on the undistorted text, but you can only see the distorted text, it will be much easier to edit the text in Outline view. (It would be nice if the tools hit test on the distorted text, but it is very difficult mathematically to invert the distortion and figure out where in the distorted image corresponds to a given position in the undistorted text.)

    Here I have done a Select All on the text, and pasted in another verse:



    Have fun!
    Teri Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Does this work with version 9 also?
    Barbara_Reuben@adobeforums.com Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    No. Envelope Distort and the Warp effects first appeared in Illustrator 10. The 3D effects first appeared in Illustrator CS.
    Teri Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Teri, are you able to send me that file we talked about a couple of weeks ago?
    Dean_M@adobeforums.com Guest

  10. #10

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Dean,

    Yeah, I still have it, but it is at work, and I usually read your messages when I'm not there. (Like now.)
    Teri Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Teri, okay, hope you remember when you're at work next time then!
    Dean_M@adobeforums.com Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Teri,

    Okay, I think am getting close now! But I can't get the top of the chunk of text to align with the top curve on the white path.

    The bottom of the chunk of text was aligned pretty well, and I tweaked it with the free transform tool, but the top of the chunk of text has too much arc, and I can't seem to find a way to change that without throwing everything else off-kilter.

    I don't know how to embed graphics in messages here, so here's a link to my file:

    <http://www.mallomar.net/modern/postcard5.pdf>

    Personally, I think there's way too much text to use this effect (unless the white path were made larger), and the small text is very hard to read, but my client is insistent. <sigh>

    Thanks,

    Marlene
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

  13. #13

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Marlene,

    To appear as disappearing (sorry Teri) into the distance, the white path should narrow more (maybe to a point); if you could tweak that, the text might fit, at least better.

    When you have an image on a website, you can link to it by copying/writing this into your message (.EXTENSION may be .gif, .jpg, etc.):

    <a href="http://www.yourdomain.topdomain/folder1/folder2/.../imagename.extension"><img src="http://www.yourdomain.topdomain/folder1/folder2/.../imagename.extension" alt="" border="0"></a>
    Jacob_Bugge@adobeforums.com Guest

  14. #14

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Jacob,

    I can't alter the white path at all; the background graphic is part of an existing logo. I have to make the text fit the white path.

    Thanks for the info on copying links to graphics. I'll try that next time.

    Marlene
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

  15. #15

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Marlene,

    Rereading the thread I would suggest your adjusting the Arc effect, step 3 in the first post by Teri, reducing the bend and/or making the text longer.
    Jacob_Bugge@adobeforums.com Guest

  16. #16

    Default Re: Possible to curve text (in envelope?) with perspective?

    Jacob,

    The client changed their request, and sent me a fax of what they want now. I'm gonna try to link to it here:

    <http://www.mallomar.net/modern/scan.jpg>

    The curved rules drawn under each line of text will not really be there. I guess the person who wrote in the text just needed them as guidelines.

    I'm thinking I might have to do this one line at a time.

    And -- worse -- the text isn't final (they haven't edited it yet), so whatever I do, will have to be redone at some point.

    Marlene
    Marlene_Hochberg@adobeforums.com Guest

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