How to Warp type in Illustrator tutorial

How to warp type in Illustrator CC 2018 2017 2015 CS6 etc tutorial

How to Warp type in Illustrator

warp tool type in illustrator tutorial
  1. Select type (or create some type via type tool) in Illustrator to be warped - you can warp all type

  2. Object menu

  3. Envelope distort category

  4. Make with warp command

  5. Set style to arc, wave, fish etc

  6. Set horizontal or vertical setting as required

  7. Set bend value

  8. Set distortion - subtle or extreme

  9. OK

Video tutorial on the subject by (youtube)


Live distortion : pointsThe distortion is still live so the envelope can still be modified by just using tools such as the direct selection tool.


The envelope points can be selected using the direct selection tool and then dragged to further modify the artwork and this can be used to create ever more complex designs using live text


Select points (as on the right) and then drag the envelope to a different position and the characters will then be updated to reflect this new envelope. You can also delete the points to simplify.


Expand the envelope : expandYou can expand it to return the design to a normal path (which can then be warped again) via the object menu and envelope and expand command.


Once you have expand then it is back to being just a normal path and you can then apply other effects and modify points etc as usual


Styles available with the warp : arc

Arc lower

Arc upper



Shell lower

Shell upper










The presets are useful but they have not been extended for years and there is no way of adding your own presets.


Edit the type contents : contentYou can also edit the content of the envelope (such as change the words to something else) via the envelope distort menu and the 'edit contents' command.


Envelope additional options : Not all the features available to the tool are in the panel. You can set the envelope options via the object menu and offers options such as fidelity, anti alias, preserve shape etc


Live effect menu : You can also add the effect as a live preset via the effects menu. You can then see the result in the document and an entry in the appearance panel.


Buy Price :$6.49 US Dollars 100 "P" shapes - a large range of wonderful letter themed designs that can be used in AI as well as many other apps, all royalty free - all by (V169) gallery


Other approaches : liveThere are also other ways of doing the same thing and some of them are listed below. You can also find many tutorials on the subjects on our site via the search

You can also distort the text with

Make mesh command

Make with mesh object

Twirl tool etc if expanded type

Blend tool is another option by using the type and selected object

Third party plugins

Effect menu and warp command

Free distort effect


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