How can I skew or shear text on a circular path in either photoshop or illustrator? I need the text running along the bottom outside of the circle to skew the opposite direction of italics (slanting to the left). Apparently, this is something that has never been done before because I can't find anything on it anywhere.

a busy cat


If that makes sense, I want the text slanted as if it was showing motion by following the rotation of the gear.

  • 1
    Couldn't you merely create text on a path like the duplicate links above, then use italic type to "slant" it?
    – Scott
    Commented May 11, 2018 at 23:02
  • In illustrator you can slant your text like any shape after Type > Create Oulines. Use the the Shear tool, but to do it asymmetrically, use the Free transform tool (tricky!!!!) . See this: dropbox.com/s/oothba117e3g8ng/Let_It_Roll.psd?dl=0 Bending is possible in two ways 1) Object > Envelope distort > Warp > Arc or 2) Drag the slanted text to brushes collection, Define it to be a pattern brush, Apply it to a piece of circle arc. Try them!
    – user82991
    Commented May 12, 2018 at 17:41
  • @user287001 why not add an answer instead of doing it in the comments?
    – Luciano
    Commented May 14, 2018 at 8:38
  • @Luciano there's no "Answer" button because some members have already decided that the question is duplicate. I cannot change it alone.
    – user82991
    Commented May 14, 2018 at 8:41
  • @user287001 Thanks for the response but I would want the numbering at the bottom to slant to the left. The opposite of an italic slant. I've tried it with the distort and transform but it comes out looking warped. I just want it to have that slight slant that an italic font would have, but in the opposite direction. See the updated photo at the top. Commented May 14, 2018 at 12:33

1 Answer 1


The quickest way to do it is:

  1. Slant back your text with the Shear tool
  2. Effect > Warp > Arc then Bend value should be -100% Horizontal


  • very quick
  • text remains editable


  • The maximum angle you can create with the circular text is 180 degrees. You can have text occupying less than that if you add extra spaces to your text (you might have to add invisible characters to the beginning and the end of the text, otherwise the warp effect will discard the space characters)

You can see below my text layer and the Warp effect applied.


  • I would think, when compared to standard text on a path, this is far too much distortion. The same thing happens if one were to use an art brush. I honestly feel the only way to accomplish this is to manually alter the letter forms one by one after expanding text on a path.
    – Scott
    Commented May 15, 2018 at 18:14

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