I am trying to distort in perspective warped type using the free transform tool in illustrator as CS6 doesn't have a pop-out menu for the freeform transform tool. I am finding it difficult to find anything on the internet that offers a how to. I tried shift+option+command and clicked and dragged down on the top left corner handle of the bounding box but just scales it down.

1 Answer 1


The order of things is imperative.

With the Free Transform Tool active...

  1. Click a handle.

  2. Then hold the modifier(s) down.

  3. Then drag.

All this must be done in that 1-2-3 order specifically. At a minimum you must click before pressing the modifiers.


  • For free distort, hold the Command/Ctrl key
  • For symmetrical distort, hold Command/Ctrl+Option/Alt
  • For perspective distort, hold Command/Ctrl+Option/Alt+Shift

If you hold down the modifiers before clicking, it won't work.

It's not as bad as it initially seems. It can be awkward to get it to kick in when you first start trying it. However, once you do it a few times you get accustomed to the timing and it becomes rather mindless.

This is one reason they added that popup tool menu in CC versions. The same shortcut, with the same mandatory order, still works in CC versions, just so you know. Once you get the hang of it, you can use the shortcut for any version of AI and completely ignore that (annoying) little popup tool menu.

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