How To Create a 3D Tube Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator

Hello everyone this is Chris from Spoon Graphics back with another video tutorial for Adobe Illustrator Today we're going to have some fun using Illustrator's blend tool to create a cool three dimensional type effect that looks like it's made out of a long bendy tube

We'll then apply an effect which gives it somewhat of a furry appearance, making it a useful trick to keep in mind for whenever you might need to make some creative artwork for titles or logos The way the effect works is you first create a blend out of two circles, so begin by selecting the Ellipse tool and draw a small shape on the artboard Clear out the default black stroke, then apply a gradient fill The colours of the gradient are entirely up to you, choose any vibrant hues for each end of the gradient flow by double clicking each swatch It might be necessary to switch to RGB to have the ability to choose anything other than shades of grey

Set the angle of the gradient to 90 degrees so the colours flow vertically Hold the ALT and Shift keys while dragging the circle to one side to make a duplicate Shift and click to select them both, then go to Object > Blend > Make Head back to Object > Blend > Blend Options and change the settings to Specified Steps Enter a super high number like 1000 to produce a smooth blend between the gradients

Now you have the blend created, the next step is creating a path to apply it to The first quick way I'll show you is by simply using the Pencil tool to freehand your design Select both your path and the blend element and go to Object > Blend > Replace Spine The blended gradient is then stretched along the path, which gives the effect a cool 3D appearance, especially where it loops and overlaps A second way to create paths for the effect is to use a script font for reference

Unless you're a master hand-letterer it can be difficult to freehand your type, but using a script font gives you something to work with Lay out your text with the Type tool, I'm using a script font named Local Market Switch the fill over to a black stroke, then right click and choose Create Outlines to convert the text element into shapes Hit the Unite button in the Pathfinder panel to merge all the overlapping letters We can't use the continuous outlines of these letters, but we can effectively trace them with the Pen tool

Follow the shape of each letter by clicking and dragging the bezier curves Hold the Command key and click on an empty part of the artboard to end a path before starting a new one Draw paths along the entire text to reproduce the word in single lines Delete the outlined type once you're done Now a colourful blended gradient can be made

Draw a circle while gauging the size relative to the text Give it a gradient fill and alter the colours, then set it to 90 degrees Drag a duplicate of the circle to one side while holding ALT and Shift, then with them both selected, go to Object > Blend > Make Set up the Blend Options with Specified Steps at 1000 We'll need a few copies of this blend element, so ALT+Drag a duplicate every time you need to use it

Hold Shift and select the first path of the text along with the gradient blend, then go to Object > Blend > Replace Spine Duplicate the gradient again and replace the spine using the next portion of the text until it's entirely made of colourful tubes Any individual pieces can be adjusted using the Object > Blend > Reverse Front to Back to alter the flow of the gradient To finish off the artwork, grab the rectangle tool and draw a shape to use as a background Place it underneath the text using the Arrange > Send to Back menu

Set up the gradient colours to complement the type, but altered so the text is still legible There's one more trick that can be used to customise this type further Select all the gradient paths, excluding the background rectangle, then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Roughen Turn on the Preview, then play around with the Size and Detail sliders to give the text a furry appearance, which is perfect for any animal or monster themed text effects The final result is a cool 3D text effect that can be customised with all kinds of colours, all created using just a blended gradient and some simple paths

If you enjoyed this tutorial or learnt any new tricks be sure to give the video a thumbs up Subscribe to the Spoon Graphics YouTube Channel for more, and be sure to head over to my Spoon Graphics website for more tutorials, design inspiration and free resources As always thank you very much for watching, and I'll see you in the next one!

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