Is it possible to identify a font/formatting in a path object and apply it to a new text object in Illustrator?


I have a full CC subscription.

In this case, object (1) appears to be Ariel [bold] but I'm looking for a more surefire way to add text with arbitrary formatting to imported pdfs that were originally composed in inkscape.

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  • I think that is a bit too sci-fi to wish for. For this to be possible, Adobe should have an ever growing database of all fonts in the world and compare your shapes to that vast collection of glyphs. Alternatively it should compare with your installed fonts on the fly. Would be very demanding for your computer. But OK, might be possible in theory, but I don't think it exists. Btw: Does text in a PDF from Inkscape necessarily have to be outlined? Can't it be preserved as regular text object?
    – Wolff
    Oct 29, 2021 at 17:17
  • 1
    Not in Illustrator as far as I know. Photoshop CC has font ID functionality, but it doesn't always work well. There are online font ID sites. These sites don't generally identify font weights/sizes. Once you get a close match, you'd need to guestimate which weight/size it is.
    – Billy Kerr
    Oct 29, 2021 at 17:56

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately, no.

All font ID tools use general "best guess" techniques by matching pixels with known pixels.. it's all a shape comparison. And even long-standing font ID tools are hit or miss.

There's no "sure fire" way to identify any font using any tool. And even if you do get some suggested fonts from an ID tool, you need to visually compare and confirm any suggested matches.

Illustrator has never been a font ID tool. It's unnecessary application overhead for a very specialized use.

Photoshop has a Match Font tool, but it's not any more accurate than any other font ID service, such as WhatTheFont from MyFonts.com. Again, the best services are still "best guess" and never really that reliable.

  • Your horns are missing
    – joojaa
    Oct 30, 2021 at 10:20
  • @joojaa I'll put them on tomorrow. Which is Halloween here in the US.
    – Scott
    Oct 30, 2021 at 10:26

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