Hi i'd like to achieve this final result with those letters made out of thin lines..How do I achieve that? I want to use the Myriad font. I know about the replace spine method but does it work for my purpose?

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  • I don't believe this was done with the blend tool or at least not on its own by any stretch. I say that because you'll notice in the curve of the E the lines have closer spacing on the inside and get further apart as they go out. With the blend tool this wouldn't happen. They could be closer to each other as a whole and then further out but not on just one side of the points. At least not to my knowledge. – Ryan Mar 3 '12 at 21:07

It's a multi-step process, and a bit painful, imho, but it seems like this technique would work:

  • Create a path along the center line of the character or character segment.

  • Create the blend using line segments about 50% longer than you will need, and the total blend at least as long as you need.

  • Replace spine.

  • Adjust the end points of the blend for perpendicularity to the shape.

  • Adjust the spine path as needed. This also changes line angles, so there's plenty of room for tweaking.

  • Object > Expand (I left everything checked in the dialog.)

That gets you to about here (I didn't do most of the tweaking you'd need to do):

enter image description here

  • Copy the original character, paste in place (Ctl/Cmd-F) and move above the expanded blend.

  • Object > Clipping Mask > Make gets you this:

enter image description here

  • Remove unwanted overlaps (line segments overlapping other line segments) and tweak awkward angles by hand. These are all live strokes, so it's not too much of a pain. The end result is below. This is a very crude example, but I think this would be workable as a technique. (Note: There's an anti-aliasing artifact in the screen capture that makes it look like the blacks are protruding from the edges of the character. They don't, in fact.)

enter image description here

  • Nice. I started playing with it in this direction and realized I wouldn't be happy with the overal result unless I expanded and manipulated heavily by hand. You're results are pretty good though! – Scott Mar 3 '12 at 23:17
  • Yep. I was surprised how well the blend worked. AI is not my specialty, so this kind of question prods me to discover stuff. :) – Alan Gilbertson Mar 3 '12 at 23:22

This would require hand manipulation of the lines.

There's no method - blends, patterns, pattern brushes, etc. - which could accomplish this. This is especially true due to the varying character stroke widths and varying angles of the inner lines.

You could use blends or pattern brushes for some areas, but in the end you would still need to manually place lines and manipulate them to complete many characters.

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