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I am trying to recreate the effect demonstrated on the logo for the Tate galleries in the UK with Photoshop.

Here are some of the logo variants:

enter image description here

Using quick masking I can emulate the gradient blur, but I haven't found a way to bloat the text in addition to the blurring. I'd like to know how to do this, specifically as a gradient.

The font used for the Tate logo appears to be a variant of VAG Rounded, if that helps at all.

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2 Answers 2

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Looks like blur + tonal adjustment (curves, levels or similar). Here's a quick attempt at the effect.

enter image description here

The BLUR top group contains the purple text.

The BLUR shape layers are the text, with a mask feather applied (basically gaussian blurred text, which could be done many ways). Using a shape layer means you can scale the document while maintaining quality.

The curves adjustment layers above BLUR layers adjust the fatness and sharpness of the letters and are directly affected by the amount of shape mask feathering. Here's one of the curves adjustment layers.

enter image description here

The groups have bitmap masks that contain a gradient to build the final text from two differently blurred parts.

Here's the PSD: https://www.dropbox.com/s/py098x0assy2rhb/blur.psd

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The short answer: Play.

Here's a very quick stab using a drop shadow in the same color as the type, no blending or transparency, with a high spread value applied.

enter image description here

From there distort, blur, print and distort in a copier, whatever does the trick.

You can also do this in Illustrator.

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