Bring ordinary text to life using professional text formatting options in Adobe Illustrator. Access thousands of high-quality Adobe Fonts, and format your text in a few simple steps.

Music festival poster hangs on a wooden post by a sidewalk lined with shops.

Qué necesitas

This sample file is an Adobe Stock asset you can use to practice what you learn in this tutorial. If you want to use the sample file beyond this tutorial, you can purchase a license on Adobe Stock. Check out the ReadMe file in the folder for the terms that apply to your use of this sample file.

Add a headline

Select the Type tool in the toolbar and click anywhere on the artboard. Type a large font size in the Character section of the Properties panel to make the text easier to see.

The selected placeholder text appears as point type, which is great for creating headlines. Point type is a horizontal or vertical line of text that begins where you click and expands as you enter characters.

Orange guitar with fingerprint texture on sea-green background with sample text at top.

Set your headline in a box

Type your text, and then press ESC to exit the Type tool. This automatically selects the type object.

To make the text bigger, press Shift and drag a corner of the type object.

“LIVE MUSIC” replaces the sample text. Shift + dragging the corner of the text box enlarges the text.

To resize the type object without resizing the text, double-click the widget on the right side of the text box. This converts the text from point type to area type.

Now you can drag a corner of the type object to change its boundary, and the text will automatically wrap to fit inside it. Leave it selected.

“LIVE MUSIC” text box is resized and the text automatically wraps to fit inside.

Format your headline

Click the Font family pull-down menu in the Character section of the Properties panel, and choose an existing font, or add a new font. You can choose from thousands of high-quality fonts in the Adobe Fonts library. If you want to follow along with the same font used here, click Find More in the Font family menu and scroll to locate Program OT in the list. Click Activate and install all fonts in the Program OT font family on your computer. Then choose Program OT from the Font family menu and Black Italic from the Font style menu.

“LIVE MUSIC” font is changed in the Character section of the Properties panel.

Make your headline stand out

Adjust the font size if you wish, and then try changing the spacing between the lines of text by adjusting the Leading.

You can change the space between the characters by adjusting the Tracking. We chose a tracking value of -10 to tighten the space between letters in our headline.

Experiment with aligning text. For example, to align the text to the center of the type object, click the Align Center icon in the Paragraph section of the Properties panel.

When you like the way it looks, drag the type object into place.

The spacing between letters, leading, is changed and text is aligned to center in the “LIVE MUSIC” text box.

Fine-tune your headline text

You can apply unique character formatting to an individual letter and also reposition it within the type object.

You’ll need to add the Touch Type tool to the Basic toolbar. Click the Edit Toolbar button (three dots) on the toolbar, which opens the All Tools drawer. Locate the Touch Type tool and drag it onto the Type tools group in the toolbar. Click anywhere on the artboard to close the drawer.

The Touch Type tool is added to the basic toolbar by clicking Edit Toolbar and dragging the Touch Type tool onto the toolbar.

Click and hold the Type tool to select the Touch Type tool. Click a character in the text and drag a corner to resize it, and then position it in the headline.

The Touch Type tool is used to edit single characters within a line of text.

Set some text at an angle

Practice your skills — type some point text with the Type tool. Change the font and font size, and adjust leading and tracking if necessary. Click More Options in the Character section of the Properties panel to view more formatting options, and click the All Caps button.

Click the Fill Color box in the Appearance section of the Properties panel, and choose a different color for the text.

Move your pointer away from the text object until you see a curved arrow. Press Shift and drag to rotate your text 90°. Drag to position it on one side of the headline.

Font customization options are located in the Character section of the Properties panel.

Add some body text with special characters

With the Type tool selected, drag to create area text filled with placeholder text.

You can copy text formatting used elsewhere in the document. Select the Eyedropper tool and click the rotated text. Change some formatting attributes, such as the font style, size, leading, and color, and then type your text.

It’s easy to add special characters to your text, like a copyright symbol or special bullet points.  You can do this in the Glyphs panel (Type > Glyphs) or by using menu commands.

With the Type tool selected, click in the text where you want to insert a special character, like an en dash. Choose Type > Insert Special Character > Hyphens And Dashes > En Dash.

Special characters are added by clicking Type > Glyphs, or Type > Insert Special Character menu.

Prepare for output

To save the poster for print, choose File > Save As. Select Adobe PDF and click Save. In the Adobe PDF Preset menu, choose either the High Quality Print or Press Quality preset based on your print provider’s recommendations.

The file is saved for print by selecting File > Save As > Adobe PDF and choosing presets based on printer’s recommendations

Nice job! Don’t stop now — keep exploring different types of text formatting, and practice your skills to create beautiful text.

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