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How to Create the Bevel & Emboss effects for editable text in Adobe Illustrator

posted by: Iaroslav Lazunov, in Illustrator Tutorials / Effects/ Comments: 0

Today we will talk about how to get the Bevel & Emboss and Letterpress effects for editable text using native Illustrator’s features. Let’s get started!

Creating Bevel effect using the 3D effect

The first thing that comes to mind is to apply the 3D Extrude & Bevel effect to create a bevel on the editable text. Type the text, select it, then go to Effect > 3D > Extrude & Bevel…. In the dialog box, select the Front for Position preset, Classic Bevel, set the height and tick Preview option.

Now you can click on More Options button, to gain access to the management of light sources.

The effect has a lot of options, but, unfortunately, this way to create a bevel effect is not ideal. We can get a number of artifacts that are not editable, as well as self-intersections of bevels and step color transitions.

The only thing that we can fix is to make smooth transitions of color, increasing the amount of Blend Steps, although such action will increase the file size in several times.

Artifacts will be stronger, the more complex the font letter shapes are. Therefore, this method is more or less applicable for simple sans-serif fonts. Besides that we can only do one kind of bevel. For example, you will not be able to achieve the rounded edge of the letters using the Extrude & Bevel effect.

Create Emboss effect using the Appearance Panel

The Appearance panel is undoubtedly one of the most powerful of Adobe Illustrator tools. And you will now see why it is like that.

Emboss effects

Type the text that we will work with.

Disable the fill in the Tools panel and open the Appearance panel (Window > Appearance).

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