I have purchased stock graphics of playing cards, but would like to change a few index letters (A, K, Q, J) to the corresponding French/German/etc. characters.

In Adobe Illustrator 2020, first I click the index letter with Selection Tool (V) and immediately see the bounding box:

card 1

I understand that it is difficult to identify the exact font used to create the original graphics, but I would like to at least keep my new letter in the same bounding box and alignment.

However when I click at the Type Tool (T), the bounding box disappears and I cannot just type at my keyboard and replace the text:

card 2

What would be the easiest way for an AI newbie like myself to replace the text there?

1 Answer 1


That J is converted to outlines, which means:

  1. it is not editable any more —the J you have is a shape, not a text — and you need to manually rework this
  2. it will be tough to find out which font was used for that, unless this is explicitly listed in the documentation of the stock package — sometimes they do specify which fonts have been used — if that's the case, you need to download and install that particular font (use Google if you don't know how to install fonts)
  3. otherwise, retype a new J with some similar rounded font. if you have no idea where to find a free, rounded font, try to download the M Plus Rounded in Extra Bold
  4. you'll probably need to select and convert your own text object to outlines via CTRL+SHIFT+O, since it is more difficult to control precise alignment with editable text boxes
  5. manually reposition the new J over the old one — vertical and horizontal centering based on the old J — then delete the old one
  • Thank you, could you add few words on the 4, convert font to outlines? Commented Apr 13, 2020 at 7:02
  • 2
    Edited — there's a shortcut for that, all of this is also well explained all over the web.
    – Lucian
    Commented Apr 13, 2020 at 7:03
  • 1
    @AlexanderFarber or Type > Create Outlines or Object > Expand. With text to target. selected, if that wasn't evident somehow.
    – joojaa
    Commented Apr 13, 2020 at 7:04
  • Thank you, already the keyword outlines has helped me understand the situation a bit better Commented Apr 13, 2020 at 7:22

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