I recently came across a Behance project showcasing a text effect I really like. Here is an example:

enter image description here

However, when I try to drag my own text in Illustrator, it ends up like this:

enter image description here
Click here for full scale

Does anyone know why this happens and how I can make sure the whole letters get scaled instead of just the middle?

  • I just want to drag the bottom half and make it smooth Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 11:57
  • Is that image the effect you want, or the effect you don't want? Please edit your question, it's not clear. Perhaps a screenshot of what you have tried, and what you are trying to achieve would help us to answer your question.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 12:22
  • Billy Kerr sorry this is the effect I don't want. This behance project has the effect I want to achieve: behance.net/gallery/54929891/Creative-Belgium-Awards-2017 Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 12:49
  • There's more to these than simply selecting some anchors and moving them down. You'd need to adjust the anchors and curves manually, and quite possibly add new anchors too.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 14:04

2 Answers 2


This is a classic example of 'it looks so easy until you try'. You can do this, but you'll have to manually edit each letter into its stretched form, sometimes adding extra anchors and editing curves.

For example for the C, add four anchor points on both sides of the shape: two just above the vertical middle, one on each side, and two below, one on each side:

enter image description here

Then, select all anchors on the bottom side of the shape, excluding those in the exact middle, and move them down.

For other letters like E or A you will have to use other tricks to prevent weird effects, like the middle bar of the E stretching to a huge block. In that case, you stretch the two gaps separately.

An easier alternative is to look for typefaces that come pre-made in this style, which are usually called 'condensed', and use them at huge sizes.

  • 1
    But it also depends on the font some fonts make this very easy others not so much
    – joojaa
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 14:16
  • @joojaa Yes, I wouldn't want to do this for any Blackletter typeface.
    – Vincent
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 14:17

This is mostly down to choice of typeface and using that typefaces to its strengths... The only reason it works as it does in the example is because nothing is being distorted other than the "length" of certain straight segments. Conversely that's why your attempt didn't work; you're blindly stretching whatever was between a bunch of points you selected. So you end up distorting curves and angles and extending crossbars in the wrong direction.

So either use an appropriate typeface to create the effect you want, or as Vincent says, add extra points to curves so that you have a smaller segment to stretch (but that isn't going to achieve the same effect).

I recently did something similar with a typeface of my own. Something similar to this:

enter image description here

The original (i.e. unmodified) type, looked like this:

enter image description here

You'll notice that all I have done is extend straight "lines"; no curves have been distorted. This works particularly well because everything is at 90 degree angles, if you're working with any other angles then it's going to get very tricky to make things fit.

  • but then its possible that you also have acess to the center strokes. and for the first example "Gold" doing the font yourself takes 2 minutes.
    – joojaa
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 16:01

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