Join Mordy Golding for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating point text, part of Illustrator CS5 Essential Training.
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Illustrator contains an extremely powerful set of text features. Just about everything that you'll need to set professional typography inside of Illustrator can certainly be done. And in fact many of the functions that you'll see here match those found in other Adobe applications for example like Adobe InDesign. Now at a very basic level inside of Illustrator, there are two kinds of type objects that you can create. There is something called the point text object which is actually what you see right over here where its says Bermuda Buttercup.
And then there is something called an area text object, which happens to be employed in this example here where we list the care and the planting guide instructions. There is actually a third kind of type object something called type on a path but we'll find out that type on a path works very similarly to area text. In this movie, let's focus specifically on creating point text inside of Illustrator. First I am going to switch to my Direct Selection tool, and I am going to click over here where it says Bermuda Buttercup and I am going to select it. Notice that I have the characters of text that appear here, there is now a single anchor point that exists right here and the text all appears along this line.
The main reason why we refer to this as a point text object is because this point right here actually defines this object. We'll learn more about paragraph settings later but right now you can see that the text Bermuda Buttercup is centered right along this anchor point right here. However, if I change my alignment using the Control panel to align to the left, notice the anchor point remains stationary. The text now aligns itself from the left of that anchor point. Likewise, if I change my alignment in my paragraph settings to be Align Right, once again the anchor point remains stationary but the text adjusts itself according to that.
I'll return the paragraph setting here back to centered and let's talk about how to create a point text object. I'll click on the artboard here to deselect that current selection. And I'll switch to my Type tool here in the Tools panel. Notice by the way if you click and hold your mouse button down the Type tool you'll see many other different variations of the Type tool that are visible, don't worry about these other tools right now, because we'll learn how to actually access most of these tools by using some intuitive keyboard shortcuts. This will prevent us from having to come back to the Tools panel every time you want to create a different kind of type object.
So for now, I am going to choose the Type tool and I'll move my cursor onto the artboard. To create a point text object simply click and release the mouse on the artboard. Notice now that your cursor changes to a blinking insertion point. Illustrator is now ready for you to enter some text. So in this case, I am going to type in the word Bermuda and if I hold down my Command key to switch back to the last Selection tool that I've used I can click on this object to select it and you'll see now that the anchor point is right here in the center. That's because the last text object that I was working with was also centered.
But the important thing to realize here is that my text object is defined by that one anchor point that appears in the center. I release the Command key and if I want to continue editing my text, I'll take my type cursor here and just simply click at the end of the word Bermuda to get that insertion point back. Let's add some more text to this object. I'll hit the Spacebar to define a new word and then I'll type here something like Buttercup is my favorite flower. Notice that as I'm typing the text just keeps going on and on it doesn't break into a second line.
This is really the distinctive behavior of a point text object there's really nothing that defines it or encloses this type. In other words, if I were to keep on typing right now the text will just go on and on and on. If I hit Return or Enter I can now jump to the next line and I could start typing some more. But I think that you'll find that inside of Illustrator the most common kind of type that you'll be creating is the point text kind, for example if you are creating labels for a map some words for a logo or a tagline or some text to create a sign.
Point text objects are easy to create and they're also easy to navigate or move around your document as well using your regular selection tools.
- Setting up a new document based on the output destination
- Using rules, guides, and grids
- Making detailed selections
- Drawing and editing paths with the Pen and Pencil tools
- Creating compound vector shapes
- Understanding the difference between point and area text
- Applying live effects
- Creating color swatches
- Transforming artwork with Rotation, Scale, and Transform effects
- Placing images
- Working with masks
- Printing, saving, and exporting artwork