How to Create a Furry Cheshire Cat Inspired Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator

Post pobrano z: How to Create a Furry Cheshire Cat Inspired Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

Follow
this tutorial and learn how to create a Cheshire Cat inspired text
effect in Adobe Illustrator. You will learn a new way to create the
appearance of fur and also use a Pattern brush to add extra fur for a
more detailed look. And this tutorial would not be complete without a
cheesy cat grin. Let’s start!

If
you are looking for more text effects or cartoon characters, be sure
to check out GraphicRiver and you’ll surely find what you are looking
for there. 

Tutorial
Assets

To
complete the tutorial, you will need the following assets:

1. How
to Open a New Document

Launch
Illustrator
and
open a blank document. Type a name for your file, set the
dimensions, and then set
Pixels
as
Units
and
RGB
as
Color
Mode

Next,
go to
Edit
> Preferences > General
and
set the
Keyboard
Increment
to
1
px
and
while there, go to
Units
to
make sure they are set as in the following image. I usually work with
these settings, and they will help you throughout the drawing process. 

how to open new illustrator document

2. How
to Create and Distort the Text

Step
1

Grab
the Type Tool (T) and write “MEOW” on your artboard using the
Jungle Fever Font, size of 160 pt. Choose Expand Appearance from the
Object menu to get the individual letters and Ungroup
(Shift-Control-G)
if necessary. 

how to write the Meow text

Step
2

Focus
on the letter “M”. Use the Delete Anchor Point Tool (-) to delete
some of the points at the top to obtain a straight edge (1). Now,
take the Pen Tool (P) and draw a shape like the one below to simulate the Cheshire Cat’s tufts of fur (2). Continue with the shape of the ears
and send them to the back (3). 

how to distort the letter M

Step
3

Focus
on the letter “W”. Use the Add Anchor Point Tool (+) to add an
extra point at the top of the left leg and distort the shape to
simulate another tuft of fur (1). 

Switch
to the Pen Tool (P) and draw the shape of the tail (2). After that,
select the letter along with the tail and press Unite in the
Pathfinder panel to merge them into a single shape (3). 

how to distort the letter W

Step
4

Rotate
and move the letter “E” closer to the letter “M” (1). Next,
delete the existing letter “O” and draw an egg-like shape instead
(2). Scale up the letter “W” 
 a little, rotate it, and move it over
the letter “O” (3). At this point, the text is ready.

how to arrange the text

3. How
to Create the Stripes on the Text

Step
1

Use
the Pen Tool (P) to draw a few paths over the letter “M” and drag
some of them over the letter “E” as well to create a continuous
look (the green paths). Use Width Profile 1 to stroke these paths
and choose different Stroke Weights of 14 pt, 12 pt, and even 10 pt

how to draw stripes on letter M

Step
2

Focus
on the letter “E”. First, make copies of the three green paths
that go over both letters because you will need the duplicates later.
After that, draw more paths to cover the free areas (the blue paths).
Use Width Profile 1 again and choose different Stroke Weights of
12 pt and 18 pt

how to draw stripes on letter E

Step
3

Now,
focus on the letter “O” and draw four paths with a 10, 12, and
14 pt Stroke (1). Next, draw a long path that goes over the letter
“W” as well, and leave some free space in the bottom left corner for
the cheesy Cheshire Cat grin (2).

Continue
to draw more wavy paths over the letter “W”, and don’t forget to
duplicate the green one for later (3). 

how to draw stripes on letter O and W

Step
4

Let’s
go back to the letter “M”. Select all the paths and choose Expand
Appearance
from the Object menu to turn them from strokes into fills.
Do not release and go to Object > Compound Path > Make
(Control-8)
(1). Make a copy in front of the resulting compound path
for later use.

Copy
and
Paste
in Front (Control-F)

the letter “M”; then select this copy along with the striped
compound path and press Minus Front in the Pathfinder panel (2). If
you get a group of shapes as a result, also go to Object >
Compound Path > Make (Control-8)
. Fill the newly obtained compound
path with gray for the moment (3). 

how to create the pink fur compound path for letter M

Step
5

Select
the original pink letter and then Copy and
Paste
in Front (Control-F)

again. While this copy stays selected, also select the copy of the
striped compound path made in the previous step and press Intersect
in the Pathfinder panel (1). If you get a group of shapes as the
result, go to Object > Compound Path > Make (Control-8). You
will obtain a new striped compound path (2). 

how to create the pink striped fur compound path for letter M

Step
6

Focus
on the letter “E” and select all the paths that go over it (1).
Choose Expand Appearance from the Object menu to turn them into fills
and then go to Object > Compound Path > Make (Control-8). Make
a copy in front of the resulting striped compound path.

Select
the pink letter and then Copy and
Paste
in Front (Control-F)
.
Keep this copy selected along with the striped compound path and
press Minus Front on the Pathfinder panel. Also go to Object >
Compound Path > Make (Control-8)
and fill the resulting shape with
gray (2).

Make
another copy in front of the pink letter. While this copy stays
selected, also select the copy of the striped compound path made
earlier and press Intersect on the Pathfinder panel. If you get a
group of shapes as the result, go to Object > Compound Path >
Make (Control-8)
. You will obtain a new striped compound path (3). 

how to create the fur compound paths for letter E

Step
7

Follow
the technique explained above and apply it for the letters “O”
and “W” as well to get the compound paths that you need. 

how to create all fur compound paths

4. How
to Create the Furry Look

Step
1

Focus
on the letter “O”. Select the gray compound path obtained earlier
and change the fill color to a darker shade. Next, go to Effect >
Sketch > Reticulation
and apply the settings shown (1). Choose
Expand Appearance from the Object menu to expand the effect, and then
go to Object > Image Trace > Make. Do not release, and choose
High Fidelity Photo as the Preset and Expand from the Control panel. 

Use the Direct Selection Tool (A) to select only the white square
around the letter and delete it (2). As a result, you will have a
complex group of tiny gray shapes (3). 

how to apply Reticulation effect and Trace for letter O

Step
2

Fill
the group of tiny shapes with the linear gradient shown at a -60
degrees Angle
(1). Next, go to Effect > Distort & Transform >
Pucker & Bloat
and apply a -140% Pucker effect to get the furry
look. Drag the Pucker & Bloat effect applied under Contents in
the Appearance panel for a better result (2).

While
the group of shapes is still selected, go to the Appearance panel and
double click on Contents to see the attributes. Select the existing
Fill attribute and then go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow.
Apply the settings shown and hit OK (3). This will add more depth to
the fur. 

how to create the pink fur on letter O

Step
3

Now,
select the striped compound path and replace the fill color (1).

Make
a copy in front of this shape, fill it with gray, and apply the
Reticulation effect using the same settings (2).

Choose
Expand Appearance from the Object menu to expand the effect and then
go to Object > Image Trace > Make. Select High Fidelity Photo
as the Preset and Expand from the Control panel just like before, and
then delete the white square. You will get a new group of tiny random
gray shapes (3). 

how to apply Reticulation effect and Trace for stripes letter O

Step
4

Fill
the newly obtained group of tiny shapes with the linear gradient
shown at a -45 degrees Angle (1). Apply a -140% Pucker effect again, and after that, drag the effect under Contents in the Appearance panel
(2).

While
the group is still selected, open the Contents to see the attributes
and apply a Drop Shadow effect using the same settings in order to
add more depth (3). 

how to create the purple striped fur on letter O

Step
5

If
you take a closer look, you will be able to see the shapes that are
behind the fur, and they are too sharp. Let’s fix that.

Select
the pink letter that was in the back all along and, while the existing
Fill attribute stays selected in the Appearance panel, go to Effect >
Path > Offset Path
and apply an Offset of -1 px to make the shape
slightly smaller. Next, go to Effect > Stylize > Inner Glow and
apply the settings shown; then go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian
Blur
and apply a Radius of 2 px (1).

Now,
select the purple striped compound path behind the purple fur and
apply the same effects to obtain smooth, blurry edges (2). You can see
the end result in the image below (3). 

how to create smooth blurry edges for letter O

Step
6

Now,
focus on the letter “E” and apply the same technique. First,
create the pink fur, starting from the gray compound path and the
Reticulation effect (1). Next, replace the blue fill color of the
striped compound path with purple and make a copy in front (2). To
this copy, apply the Reticulation effect and then create the purple
fur as explained earlier (3). At the end, don’t forget to create the
smooth, blurry edges for the original pink letter and the purple
stripes that are in the back (4).

Repeat
the same things for the letter “W”. 

how to create fur on letter E O and W

Step
7

For
the letter “M”, after you create the fur on the actual letter (1), let’s work on the shapes above. Select the fur tufts shape and apply
the Offset Path, Inner Glow and Gaussian Blur effects using the same
settings as for the purple striped compound paths earlier in the
tutorial (2). Make a copy in front of this shape, remove all existing
appearances, and apply the
Reticulation
effect followed by Image Trace and the Pucker & Bloat effect to create the
fur (3). 

how to create fur on tufts shape for letter M

Step
8

Repeat
the same technique and create the pink fur on the ears. 

how to create fur on ear shapes for letter M

Step
9

At
this point, the Cheshire Cat inspired text effect should look like the following image. 

finished pink and purple fur for Meow text

5. How
to Add Extra Fur Around the Text

Step
1

Select
the original pink letter “M” and then Copy and Paste in Back
(Control-B)
to make a copy of it. Remove all existing appearances
(1). Go to File > Scripts > Round Any Corner and apply a Radius
of 10 in order to get the rounded corners. This script works better
than the Round Corners effect. 
You
can find more information about the Round Any Corner Script and how to
install and use it in the 
20
Free and Useful Adobe Illustrator Scripts
 tutorial.

Give
it a 1 pt light pink Stroke and use the Grass Pattern Brush that you
can find in the Brush Libraries Menu > Borders >
Borders_Novelty
. Open the Stroke Options window from the Appearance
panel, drag the Scale slider to 20%, and set the Colorization Method
to Tints and Shades. This will make the grass smaller, like fur, and it will take the color of the stroke, which in this case is pink. If the tips
of the brush don’t go outwards, also check the Flip Across option
(2). 

how to add extra fur around letter M

Step
2

While
this copy of the letter is still selected, add a New Stroke at the
top of the Appearance panel and use the Grass Pattern Brush again.
This time, set the color to a darker pink (1). Open the Stroke Options
window, drag the Scale slider to 40%, and set the Colorization Method
to Tints and Shades. You can see the result in the image below (2). 

how to add more fur around letter M

Step
3

Now,
select the fur tufts shape and make a copy in back. Remove the
existing appearances and then apply the Round Any Corner Script. To
this shape, apply the two Stroke attributes using the Grass Pattern
Brush
and the same settings (1).

Repeat
the same thing for the ear shapes (2).

You
can even save this “Edge Fur Graphic Style” in the Graphic Styles
panel and apply it more easily to the other letters. 

how to add extra fur around tufts and ear shapes

Step
4

Apply
the same technique for the letters “E”, “O”, and “W”, and
add extra fur around the letters. 

how to add extra fur around letters E O and W

6. How
to Add Shadow to the Furry Text

Step
1

Let’s
create a complex compound path. Focus on the letter “O”, select
the original pink shape, and then Copy and Paste in Place
(Shift-Control-V)
. Remove all existing appearances and give it any
fill color (1). Hide this shape for the moment.

Select
the purple fur group and Copy and Paste in Place (Shift-Control-V) to
make a copy of it. Double click on Contents in the Appearance panel
to see the attributes and delete the Drop Shadow effect. Now, go to
Object > Expand Appearance in order to expand the Pucker &
Bloat
effect. Do not release the group and press Unite in the
Pathfinder panel (2); then go to Object > Compound Path > Make
(Control-8)
. Fill the resulting striped fur compound path with blue
for the moment (3). 

how to create a striped fur compound path for letter O

Step
2

Next,
select the pink fur group and Copy and Paste in Place
(Shift-Control-V)
to make a copy of it. Delete the Drop Shadow effect
in the Appearance panel and then go to Object > Expand Appearance
to expand the Pucker & Bloat effect (1). Press Unite in the
Pathfinder panel followed by Object > Compound Path > Make
(Control-8)
and you will obtain the green complex compound path (2).
Hide it for now. 

how to create a complex fur compound path for letter O

Step
3

Next,
select the copy of the letter “O” stroked with the Grass Pattern
Brush
and then Copy and Paste in Place (Shift-Control-V) to make a
copy of it (1). Go to Object > Expand Appearance to expand the
brushes (2); then press Unite in the Pathfinder panel followed by
Object > Compound Path > Make (Control-8). Fill the resulting
compound path with gray for the moment (3). 

how to create the edge fur compound path for letter O

Step
4

Unhide
the pink, blue, green, and gray compound paths that you have obtained
in the previous three steps (1) and keep them selected. Press Unite
in the Pathfinder panel, and then go to Object > Compound Path >
Make (Control-8)
. We’ll use this newly obtained shape to create the
shadow (2). 

how to create the shadow shape for letter O

Step
5

Follow
the steps explained above and create the other shapes that you need
(1). Move all four shapes into a New Layer under the text effect and
fill them with purple. Go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow and
apply the settings shown (2).

how to create shadow for Meow text

Step
6

Select
the four shapes from the previous step, and then Copy and Paste in
Back (Control-B)
to make copies of them. While they are still
selected, go to Object > Compound Path > Make (Control-8) to
merge them into a single compound path (1). Remove the Drop Shadow
effect and replace it with the Outer Glow effect (2). 

how to add more shadow around Meow text

Step
7

Take
the Pen Tool (P) and draw a path where the letter “M” touches “E” and where “O” touches “W”. Send the first path
behind the letter “M” but in front of the letter “E”; and
send the second path behind the letter “W” but in front of “O”
(1).

Give
them both a 3 pt black Stroke and use Width Profile 1 in the
Stroke panel. Next, apply a 3 px Gaussian Blur and reduce the Opacity
to 50% (2). 

how to add shadow between Meow letters

7. How
to Create the Cheesy Cheshire Cat Grin

Step
1

Use
the Pen Tool (P) to draw the shape of the smile on the letter “O”.
Give it a white fill and then go to Effect > Stylize > Outer
Glow
and apply the settings shown. Also, add a 2 pt Outside Stroke
and use the linear gradient shown. 

how to draw the cheesy cat smile shape on letter O

Step
2

With
the smile shape still selected, add a New Fill at the bottom of the
Appearance panel and use black as the color. While this Fill
attribute stays selected, go to Effect > Distort & Transform >
Transform
and apply a -3 px Vertical Move. Set the Blending Mode to
Overlay and you will get a thin shadow at the top of the smile (1).

With
the smile shape still selected, add another black Fill attribute at
the bottom of the Appearance panel and then apply a 3 px Vertical
Move
. Set the Blending Mode to Overlay and you will get a thin shadow
at the bottom of the smile (2). 

how to add shadow around cheesy cat smile

Step
3

Use
the Pen Tool (P) of the Line Segment Tool (\) to draw a bunch of
short paths to define the teeth (1). Give all of them a 2 pt light
gray Stroke and use the Tapered Blend Art Brush. Add a New Stroke at
the top of the Appearance panel and use the same brush, but choose a
darker shade of gray and reduce the Stroke Weight at 0.2 pt (2).
I’ve
shown how to create and save this useful blend brush in the How to Create a Candy Monster Character 
tutorial
(section 10).

Select
the smile shape and then Copy and Paste in Place (Shift-Control-V) to
make a copy of it. Set it to stroke-none and fill-none. While this
copy stays selected, also select the lines and go to Object >
Clipping Mask > Make (Control-7)
(3). 

how to define the teeth on cheesy cat smile

Step
4

Use
the Pen Tool (P) to draw a few short paths following the edge around
the mouth and apply the two Stroke attributes using the Grass Pattern
Brush
and the same settings as for the extra fur around the edges of
the letters earlier in the tutorial (1).

While
all the paths stay selected, go to Object > Expand Appearance in
order to expand the brushes, and then Group (Control-G) them and apply
the Drop Shadow effect (2). 

how to add extra fur around cheesy cat smile

Step
5

Select
the smile shape, go to Object > Path > Offset Path, and apply an
Offset
of 2 px. Now, select the bigger shape that you have obtained
and bring it in front of everything by going to Object > Arrange >
Bring to Front (Shift-Control-])
. Set this shape to stroke-none and
fill-none (1).

Now,
select the small groups of fur around the mouth along with the copy
of the smile and go to Object > Clipping Mask > Make (Control-7)
(2). At this point, the cheesy grin is ready. 

how to mask extra fur around cheesy cat smile

Congratulations!
You’re Done

Here
is the final image of the Cheshire Cat inspired text effect. This was
challenging and fun to create. I hope you enjoyed it and that you
learned new techniques. Don’t forget to share an image with us if you
decide to recreate it. 

Cheshire Cat inspired text effect final image