Working With Text/Text Options
Creatomg Vector Text

When creating text, you have three options to choose from. Depending on what you want to accomplish will determine which option you choose. First lets review the three options:

Vector - creates vector text that resides on a vector layer. Vector graphics use mathematical descriptions instead of pixels. This allows the modification of the images without any loss of resolution. When you are satisfied with your drawing element, you can rasterise it, meaning convert it to raster graphics.

Selection - creates a selection marquee in the shape of the text characters. You can treat the selection as you would any made from the selection tools in that it can be moved, copied, filled, etc. This form of text is not vector based.

Floating - creates raster text that is a floating selection. Raster graphics use rows of pixels to make an image. This is the method used by .gif, .jpg and many other graphics formats. You would use this method if you want to work with the text after it is inserted.Your monitor and your printer also use raster graphics. Ideally you should place this type of text on it's own raster layer, otherwise it is merged with the current layer and would be difficult to edit.

Creating Vector Text:

Create a new image: Go to File || New (Ctrl+N):
Width = 200 pixels
Height = 200 pixels
Resolution = 72.00 pixels/inch
Background = Raster Background
Color Depth = 16 Million Colors (24 Bit)
Transparent = checked

Click on the Text tool (T). In the Tool Options palette, make sure that:
Create as = Vector, and
Stroke width = 3.0
Choose a Font and Size you like. I used Elephant size 20.

In the Materials palette, set the Foreground Material to a color of your choice and the Background Material to a color, gradient, or pattern you like. I used the color and pattern shown below for my text.

Click into the image to open the Text Entry dialog. Type in your name or any word you want. I typed "Vector Text" with Vector on top row, hit the enter key and type Text on the bottom row. Click Apply to place the text on the canvas. My text is shown below:

You should have a dashed rectangle around your text with little gray boxes because Vector was selected in the Tool Options palette. You can left-click on the boxes around the outside, hold down the button and drag the box to resize the text. The little box inside will let you rotate the text. The circle in the middle will let you move the text.

You can accomplish almost the same thing with a raster layer using the Deform tool, but you may get some distortion if you used a pattern like I used above. Vector layers allow resizing without any distortion because they are "drawn mathematically" instead of resizing pixels like a raster layer. Resizing is just one of the features that makes vectors much better to work with than rasters. Let's explore some more.

The Object Selection tool (O) and the options on the Object menu only work on vector layers. For some of the options you need to have multiple vectors selected. There are all kinds of neat little features you can use such as Align, Distribute, and so on. You will need to come back and experiment with some of the features. Lets return to the vector text.

Let's make some changes. Click on the "+" sign beside the 'Vector 1' layer in the Layer palette.

Right-click on your text layer (called Vector in the layer pallete) and choose "Edit Text" from the pop-up menu. The Text Entry dialog box will pop up with the text already selected (highlighted).

With the Text Entry dialog box open and your text selected make some changes in the Tool Options palette. Try to change the Font and/or Size. If you had several words and decided to change one of the words or letters you can select just what you want to change in the Text Entry dialog by using the mouse or holding down the Shift key and pressing the arrow keys to select what you want.

To add or delete an outline to your text, in the Materials palette, set the Foreground to a Color, Gradient, or Pattern of your choice or select null if you want to get rid of your stroke.

Click on Apply to accept the changes.

Lets jazz it up some more. Right-click on the text layer in the Layer palette and choose "Convert Text to Curves || As Character Shapes from the pop-up menu.

If you click on the little plus sign that is now in front of the text layer you will see that each letter is on its own layer now. This opens up all kinds of possibilities.

Double-click on one of the letter layers in the Layer palette by right-clicking on it and choose Properties from the pop-up menu to open the Vector Properties dialog box. Try to change the Stroke, the Materials, or whatever you want until you get something you like.

Do the same thing to all the letters, choosing a different pattern each time. Just play around and see what you can come up with that you like. Here's what I came up with giving you some kind of idea of what you can do using the Vector Properties dialog.


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