enter image description here

I see this very cool typographic arts and I really want to make something like that. I tried making one that is identical, everything is good except for one thing; I can not achieve the same effect as the one in this image. You see, each word and shape -including the banner downwards- has a thick dark blue stroke and the area between each word and shape is colored with the same stroke color and it never goes out of the line stroke line, just the background space area between the shapes. Even the lines of the background area (dark blue) between the last word in white and the next shape runs smoothly with nice curves.

I tried searching for such a technique, but never found anything similar. Please kindly, tell me the name of this technique and how to achieve it?


Update: Here are some other images for you people to help me try to find the technique used in this design. Help me notice any pattern used in these images by artist to achieve the dark area that flows around shapes.

enter image description here


2 Answers 2


See the following cartoon:

enter image description here

  1. Position the text shapes and select them, Group them to prevent accidental moves

  2. Make a copy. Goto the Pathfinder panel and select Unite (this is not a must, but can make the handling easier)

  3. Give to the copy the wanted fill color and a thick enough stroke with the same color

  4. Draw a shape that fills the holes and has the wanted form. Use the pen tool to make the curves you need. This example has no artistical goals, it's only for the method

  5. Give to the filler shape the same fill color

  6. Drag the original shapes onto the background shapes

You can edit the background shape with the direct selection tool. If you want to make some sharp corners smooth, you can convert the corner anchor point to smooth with the anchor point type conversion tool (=drag the wanted handle lengths and directions)

INSERT due the extended question:

Here's something fast with the same technical methods:

enter image description here

There is a with the pen drawn black shape in the middle under the words, the outline is a circle, united with a copy of the N with thick stroke the texts have black stroke + decorative lines. The curve with dots is prepared to a brush for easy repeat. The texts were originally written with a font, but converted to curves (=Outlines) and distorted totally differently than in your example.

Inserted the full receipe:

enter image description here

  1. Write the text with the ordinary text tool. The name of the font is taken from questioner's previous question.

  2. Convert the text to curves (= Type > Create Outlines), drag to bigger size, give white fill + black stroke

  3. Draw a circle, no fill, black stroke; the size = Give fits in the middle and Up below it

  4. Drag i lower and draw a circle over it, drag Never much smaller

  5. With Object > Envelope distort > Make with warp distort words Never and Up. Apply distortion Upper arc to Never and Lower arc to Up. The used bending was 50%

  6. Expand the distorted objects (not strokes and fills, only objects), Ungroup them until the characters can be selected separately. Drag Never and Up smaller and place them. You must do separately N, ever, U and p.

  7. Copy and paste in place N. Give to it the same thick stroke a the circle has. Remove the fill. Select the circle and the copy. Apply Unite in the pathfinder panel. The rest of the objects are temporarily blanked here only to see clearly the result.

  8. Take the Pen tool. Draw the bottom shape and fix the curvatures & anchor point placements with the direct selection tool. It's colored and on the top here only to see it. Draw with the same stroke as the characters have. Smart quides can help to make it fit.

  9. The bottom shape has got black fill and it's arranged to the back

  10. Draw a thin rectangle and 3 circles, no stroke, black fill. Drag it into the brushes collection and select it to be a new pattern brush

  11. Take the Pen tool and draw some decorative lines, apply the new brush and select thin enough stroke to each. Fine-tune the curves with the direct selection tool.

  • I got lost after the part "to the smaller shapes". What small shapes are you talking about? and it would be appreciated if you could rephrase the answer in another way!
    – AndrewMk
    Sep 3, 2017 at 14:16
  • @AndrewMk I rewrote the text and added an image.
    – user82991
    Sep 3, 2017 at 15:00
  • I do no really think that answer the question. In your method the shapes have to be overlapping, and in the image non of the shapes are overlapping. Plus, in step 4 you said I should cover the holes, but that's not only that I have to connect the 2 shapes with an outline. In the Image the lines and the dark background are far more perfected than that! Your method is more or less like blending 2 shapes, which does not achieve what I'm looking for.
    – AndrewMk
    Sep 3, 2017 at 15:27
  • @AndrewMk I revised the image and removed the pverlap. Note that the fine curvatures and overall artistical value are beyond this answer. I'm writing only about the tools.
    – user82991
    Sep 3, 2017 at 15:51
  • So do you think the fine curvature can't be achieved with a technical method? Is it just artistic?!!
    – AndrewMk
    Sep 3, 2017 at 15:56

Select the continuous area you wish to treat with "the technique."

To be effective, there can be no line-spacing or any spacing that is not tangent to the letterforms and all the graphic devices (banners, or other morticed shapes.)

  • Compress the items you want to "unify"
  • Everything must be touching (tangent).
  • Use Heavily stroked outlines to further help with achieving the effect you are striving for.


  • Select all the elements you want to process

  • Combine everything with Pathfinder into a single shape
  • Fill the shape with the colour wanted (in this case, blue)
  • Put the shape on its own layer
  • Position the layer behind the continuous area where you wish to have the unifying background effect.
  • You're done (simply, without any a/w, curves, etc.)
  • What do you mean by compressing the item I want to unify?
    – AndrewMk
    Sep 8, 2017 at 19:28
  • @AndrewMk Reduce the space between all the graphic elements by tight kerning, negative line-spacing, and fitting the ascenders and descenders to fit as closely as possible. "Slide" lines of text back-and-forth until they fit veeeery tightly. Not overlapping—tight-enough so the heavy outline strokes are "shared." Hard to find the right word.
    – Stan
    Sep 9, 2017 at 1:39

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