How to outline a font in illustrator

Tip by bikegypsy on April 29, 2018

Outlining a font is the process of converting it from a typical text format into a common vector image.

Why would we want to outline text?

Outlining allows us the flexibility of treating a font as any other vector image. For example, once a letter is outlined, we can modify its shape at will, which is impossible in its conventional ‘font’ format, such as TrueType or OpenType.

What are the drawbacks?

The most important drawback to outlining a font is that we will loose the ability to treat it as normal text, meaning that we loose all its normal editable font parameters and information, such as the choice of type face, font size, letter spacing (tracking and kerning), etc, which would normally be performed through the Character and Paragraph panels. For exemple, once the text outlined, you won’t be able to change it’s type face. Further more, any other parameters, such as letter spacing, will need to be performed manually.

Note: you must outline the text of an entire text box.

How to outline a font:

1. Left click with your mouse in order to select the text box you wish to rasterize

2. Right click in order to open the control panel

3. Scroll down and click on ‘Create Outlines’

4. Your text is now a vector image

5. You may change its shape at will

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