How to convert text to vector in Adobe Illustrator? Hey, guys! Cary Hawkins here with another vectormaidcom tutorial. And today I’m going to be talking about converting text to vector now first before I begin. I want to go over a couple of possible. Meanings what I’m seeing is when people are searching text to vector, they actually are looking for one of two possibilities. The first is that they’re actually wanting to take editable text and convert it to vector outlines. The second is that they have raster text and they want to convert that raster text to vector text, which is also called vectorization. So we’re going to handle both of those today, but first I’ll talk about converting text to outlines because it’s the simplest and shortest. You’re in illustrator. You’ve already got some text like I have here that you’ve typed out, and you need to convert it to outlines well. Why do you need to convert it to outlines? There are a couple of possible reasons. One is that the printer plotter or CNC router that you’re using to produce your artwork may require it of you to convert it to outlines so that the text shapes are properly, uh, produced. The other thing would be if you are getting larger than 1296 points on font size. So let me just bump this up real quick to 1296 point and back out just to show you. If I wanted to make that any bigger it, it won’t do it. It bounces back to 1296 You can even come up here and try to increase the font size and it won’t let you, but if you create it as outlines, then you are able to make it larger, so that’s just important if you’re making a really really big banner or something like that, and you want to make it to scale, but you still want the text to be able to be the size it needs to be. So how do you easily convert text to outlines? It’s really simple, Select the text that you’ve created and then hit control or command plus shift and o and that’s it, that’s. All you have to do. You’ve just turned everything into an outline. You’ll be able to tell that you’ve lost your text baseline and usually your bounding box is a little bit tighter ill. Just go back up so you can see bounding box a little bit bigger and you get this nice little blue bass line to let you know where the text is also. If you have your character window open, you’ll have all of these options of curling and tracking and shifting the baseline. All of this stuff is available to you, but once you hit control shift and o or command shift and O and turn it into outlines. You are going to lose all of this. So my recommendation is before you convert your text to outlines is to just create a copy of it somewhere. You can either drag it off to the side out here or you can actually save two files. If if that’s easier for you and then convert one and leave the other one as editable text, just in case somebody’s like. Oh, I don’t want it to say outlines. I want it to say outline. Well, I can go in, and then then I can create an outline from this version, and if you want to be able to tell quickly and easily which of your texts are converted to outlines, the easiest thing to do would be to go view outline, or you can hit control Y, and that will show you so any text that’s been converted to an outline is going to look just like this one. It has outlines and the ones that aren’t converted. Don’t they’re still black, solid text like that? But what if you’re in the camp that needs to take raster text and turn that into vector text or what we call vectorization? Well, there’s a couple methods to do that. You can live trace or you can do it by hand using the pen tool. But first I would actually tell you to identify the font and see if you can just find it and type it out, that’s going to be the easiest way to end up with a vector font result. I’ll show you what I mean. Here’s an example of a font that say a client wants you to vectorize this right here and as you can see. If I zoom in, its very pixelated, looks awful. You could not blow that up without seeing the pixelation. Um, but this might be kind of tricky to do with the pen tool and you could certainly live trace it, but you might miss out on some of the little details and the nuance and it’s honestly easier just to find the font. Sometimes so what I would do is go to what The Fontco’m create a PNG or jpeg of the image that you have and make sure that it’s a decent size. I try to get the font that I’m trying to identify legible at about one to two inches of actual size. So something like that, and that’ll help you. All you need to do is click on this. Go find your file. I always name mine. WTF put it on the desktop. That’s an easy way for me to always find it hit, ok? It’s going to put a box around what it identifies as the font. You sometimes have to help it. Make sure you come out here. All the way, so just click and drag on these until the whole font is selected, then click this button here and it will try to identify the font. Now you can change the size here If you want to. And if for some reason, it didn’t get the letters quite right, you can enter your own text and type in the word font, for instance, but it looks like it did a good enough job, and the second result is correct. Medina script. That’s the one that we want. See if I can blow it up, even more you can see. It’s got a little bit of eroded details. That is the one that we want, but let’s say you were not able to find a result here. You’ve got all these different possibilities. And what no good match consult an expert from the community. You’ll have to sign up with an account to do this, but it’s free and it takes no time whatsoever and then just title. Your, uh, case here that. Oh, I don’t know, let’s just call it mysterious font. You can leave an option optional message. If you’d like I usually don’t and then just notify me by email. This is why you need an account so that you have an email. It can go to and say, click create case and then usually within a few hours If not that soon, typically by the next day, someone will have gotten back to you and they usually are spot on. This is easily the best font identification website out there. It beats all the others. It beats the Photoshop in software version that absolutely sucks, so don’t use that. That’s terrible. Use this instead, so we know what this font is. It’s Medina script. We’ve identified it and we could easily go to Google and do a search typing in Medina script. Font free something like that. And if you don’t see a good free version of it within the first 510 download pages, you’re probably not going to easily find one, but once we know what the font is and let’s say, we don’t have a freebie, but we really just need a word or two, and it’s on a logo that’s already existed that they just lost the vector files to we don’t want to buy the font. Sometimes they’re really expensive, So let’s go looking for it again on my fonts, and I just did a search here for Medina script. Medina script came up and it just has this filler text down here, but what we want to do is enter our own, which is font what that’s the word we’re trying to vectorize, and then I would click fit to width so that you get a really big size on this. Uh, on this image because it’s going to create a preview image here, and this is going to be better than the image that we have so, but what you want to do is to download this image. I’m using Chrome. You can do this with other browsers, But Chrome works the best, so right, click hit inspect and that will bring up the website code, which will show the image tag here. And then you’ve got two sources. This is a 2441 by 1252 pixels image. If you hover over it, you’ll see that that’s the image. There’s the other source here, and it looks like the same image. Same size, however, next to it, it has a 2x which means it’s twice as big, so click on the one that says 2x right. Click, click open in new tab boom. There it is, you should have a magnifier here to actually zoom in on it, and then just right, click and save that somewhere where you’re where you know it’s going to be. This is the file, and as you can see, it’s not nearly as pixelated as our original, but you would still get pixelated if you zoomed in really closely so but this will make for a much better live trace than if we used the original that our client sent us, so come up here to image trace and this is tracing presets on the side. You will always always always always always use silhouettes, Trust me when it’s black and white, or it’s like a font like this with lots of erosion and stuff like that, just use silhouettes. It’s always going to be great. Even the default is going to look pretty good there. It is, I’m going to pop this open. This is the panel for image trace. It’s got all the options in it. Make sure that advanced is clicked. So you can see everything. 230 is probably too high. I’m actually going to drop it to 200 I’m going to bump this up to 90 I’m going to leave corners where they are and drop this down to 1 which is the lowest setting and see what it does. That looks fine to me, and if it looks good to you, you come up here to expand, and you are done, that’s. It we’ve Vectorized that font font to vector looks really good. Um, and it didn’t take you any time at all, and you didn’t have to go find that font, okay. What if you’ve been unsuccessful at identifying the font? Or you know the font, but you can’t find it for free, and it’s not a eroded kind of brushed looking font. It’s actually a very 90 degree crisp looking font like this right here. Well, then, in that case, I would suggest that you recreate the font using the pen tool. So hotkey p that will bring that up and we will start just by clicking over in a corner somewhere and I’m holding shift and I’m clicking again. Hold shift, mouse, click and for this, I’m going to click drag while I’m holding shift to keep that nice and level on the horizon, and you get that preview line. That’s that blue preview line, you just want to get that to align with your original and then release and do the same thing on the next side, sort of at the peak of this curve and do the same thing holding shift dragging out until that blue line aligns with the image we are copying and then do the same thing down here now as you can see on this one, it’s off a little bit, and if that happens, hold Alt, and that will give you this tool that you can use to adjust these, so I’m just holding Alt and then holding shift to make sure that they stay in line with where they are now. If I release all time back to where I started and I can continue this path, I haven’t lost my place. If you will, but another thing you can do if say, this just isn’t working like, you know, that curve is great, but I need it to be right here, and that’s that’s too much. Then you can click on that anchor point again and drag out to create a different curve amount. See how that’s less than it was before, and I’m going to go ahead and click here to finish that now. What if I want to come back down here? Though now I’ve got a curve. I don’t want it to curve. Well, you can just click on this again and that cancels out the curve Now. It’s just going to be a straight line down and I’m holding shift to come over here and I’m holding shift to come back up to the top, and there it is. I’m going to switch my stroke and fill, so you can see what I’ve done and I’m going to switch back using shift X, so I can go back in and create this piece. Grab the pen tool again. It’s probably about here somewhere and I’m just clicking and dragging out holding shift. Same thing here, click and hold out with shift. I’m going to come to right here in the same spot, Click and drag out and spot over here, same thing, click and drag, click and drag lots of that. All right, we’ve got our two shapes, lets. Grab them, make sure you don’t have the background layer selected and I will shift those over to fill, so you can see them and you want to go to your Pathfinder options. You can go window Pathfinder. If you don’t see it and we’re going to do minus front because the second shape is in the front and there you have it now. It’s not absolutely perfect, but it’s really good, and if you needed it to be even better, you could always come in later with your direct selection tool. Hotkey a and move some of these pieces around a little bit, just grab the individual anchor points and shift them to your liking and then just rinse and repeat for the rest of these, and that’s how you get it done. So if you guys liked this tutorial, please leave a comment down below, uh, subscribe to my channel hit. The notification Bell. And I will see you guys in the next video.