Unlimited PS Actions, graphics, videos & courses! Unlimited asset downloads! From $16.50/m
Advertisement
  1. Design & Illustration
  2. Text Effects

How to Create a Retro Long Shadow Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator

by
Difficulty:BeginnerLength:MediumLanguages:
This post is part of a series called Retro Text Effect Tutorials.
How to Create a Warm, Retro Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator
Final product imageFinal product imageFinal product image
What You'll Be Creating

In the following tutorial you will learn how to create long shadow text in Illustrator and some simple techniques that can be used to add text shadows in Illustrator. 

For starters, you will learn how to create the text. Taking full advantage of the Appearance panel and using a neat Transform effect, you will learn how to add a shadow to the text in Adobe Illustrator. Some basic blending techniques and a simple Gaussian Blur effect will be the final touches for your long shadow effect.

What You'll Learn in This Long Shadow Illustrator Tutorial

  • How to add text in Illustrator
  • How to add a shadow to text in Adobe Illustrator

If you don't have time to learn how to add a shadow to text in Adobe Illustrator, you can always try Envato Elements, where you can find a massive collection of text effects, including long shadow effects. Check out this fully editable text effect, and apply a long shadow effect with a simple click.

retro long shadow effectretro long shadow effectretro long shadow effect

What You Will Need

You will need the following font in order to complete this long shadow effect:

1. How to Create the Text

Hit Control-N to create a new document.

Select Pixels from the Units drop-down menu, enter 850 in the width box and 610 in the height box and then click that More Settings button. Select RGB for the Color Mode, set the Raster Effects to Screen (72 ppi) and then click that Create Document button. Don't forget to set the unit of measurement to pixels from Edit > Preferences > Units.

Now that you're set, let's see how you can add a shadow to text in Illustrator.

setup gridsetup gridsetup grid

Step 2

Pick the Type Tool (T) and open the Character panel (Window > Type > Character). Select the Insaniburger font and set the size to 200 px.

Move to your artboard, click on it, and add your piece of text about as shown below. Make it black.

type tooltype tooltype tool

Step 3

Use the same tool and character attributes to create the last letter of your text. Make it blue and place it right above the black one.

Keep adding separate blue letters until you cover all your black text. Once you're done, go to the Layers panel (Window > Layers) and remove your black text.

letterletterletter

2. How to Add the Long Shadow Effect in Illustrator

Step 1

Select one of your letters, focus on the Swatches panel (Window > Swatches) and click that [None] swatch to remove the blue text color.

Move to the Appearance panel (Window > Appearance) and add a new fill using the Add New Fill button. Select that new fill and set the color to R=255 G=245 B=225.

fill nonefill nonefill none

Step 2

Make sure that your "S" is still selected and focus on the Appearance panel. Add a second fill and select it. Drag it in the bottom of the panel, set the color to R=0 G=146 B=69 and then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Drag both Move sliders to 0.5 px, enter 700 in that Copies box, click OK, and that's how you add a long shadow in Illustrator.

long shadowlong shadowlong shadow

Step 3

Make sure that your "S" is still selected and keep focusing on the Appearance panel. Add a third fill and select it.

Drag it between the existing two fills and set the color to black. Lower its Opacity to 10% and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -10 px Offset, click that OK button and then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Drag both Move sliders to 15 px, click that OK button and then go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Enter a 5 px Radius, click OK, and that's the second method that you can use to add a shadow to text in Illustrator.

add new filladd new filladd new fill

Step 4

Focus on the Layers panel, open your layer, and use those target icons to easily apply the Appearance attributes used for your first letter for the rest of your letters. Target icons are the little round icons displayed at the far right of each individual layer or shape.

Hold the Alt button from your keyboard, click the target icon that stands for your "S", and then drag it into the target icon that stands for your "T". Select your "T", focus on the Appearance panel and replace the green used for that bottom fill with R=255 G=154 B=9.

target icontarget icontarget icon

Step 5

Move to the "O", apply the same Appearance attributes, but replace the green with R=244 G=54 B=44.

Select that "P", apply the same Appearance attributes and replace the green with R=7 G=132 B=170.

red bluered bluered blue

3. How to Create a Background and Add More Text Shadows in Illustrator

Step 1

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a shape that covers your entire artboard. Fill it with R=42 G=27 B=67 and send it to back (Shift-Control-[).

backgroundbackgroundbackground

Step 2

Pick the Type Tool (T) and focus on the Character panel. Make sure that the Insaniburger font is still selected and set the size to 50 px.

Add the "DON'T" piece of text and place it as shown in the following image. Again, remove the text color and then focus on the Appearance panel. Add a fill using that Add New Fill button, select it and set the color to R=255 G=245 B=225.

type tooltype tooltype tool

Step 3

Make sure that your "DON'T" text stays selected, focus on the Appearance panel, and add a second fill.

Select the bottom fill, set its color to R=255 G=80 B=145 and then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform to add a shadow effect in Illustrator. Enter the attributes shown in the following image, and then click that OK button.

add new filladd new filladd new fill

Step 4

Make sure that your "DON'T" text is still selected, and keep focusing on the Appearance panel. Add a third fill and select it to add a subtle text shadow in Illustrator.

Drag it between the existing two fills and set the color to black. Lower its Opacity to 10% and then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -2 px Offset, click that OK button and then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Drag both Move sliders to 5 px, click that OK button and then go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Enter a 3 px Radius and then click that OK button.

gaussian blurgaussian blurgaussian blur

Step 5

Pick the Type Tool (T) and add the "BELIEVING" text. Set the text color to R=255 G=245 B=225 and place it as shown in the following image. Make sure that this new piece of text is selected, and this time go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow to add a subtle shadow effect in Illustrator. Enter the attributes shown below, click OK, and with this final touch your Illustrator long shadow text effect is complete.

drop shadowdrop shadowdrop shadow

Congratulations! You're Done!

Here is how your long shadow effect should look. I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial and can apply these techniques in your future projects. Don't hesitate to share your final result in the comments section.

Feel free to adjust the final long shadow effect and make it your own.

final productfinal productfinal product

Popular Text Effects From Envato Elements

Envato Elements is an excellent resource for text effects, including Illustrator shadow effects. Here's a short list of some of the most popular text effects that you can find.

Vintage Text Effects for Illustrator (AI, EPS)

If you don't have time to learn how to add shadow to text in Adobe Illustrator, you can instead use one of these six vintage text effects for Adobe Illustrator.

vintage long shadow effectvintage long shadow effectvintage long shadow effect

Illustrator Long Shadow Text Effect (AI, EPS)

Cut the hassle of learning how to add a shadow to text in Illustrator and use this fully editable Illustrator long shadow text effect. All you have to do is type in your text, and the effect will be applied.

long shadow effectlong shadow effectlong shadow effect

Vintage and Retro Styles Vol.1 (AI)

Don't have the time to learn how to create long shadow text in Illustrator? With this pack of ten vintage and retro graphic styles, you can add a shadow to text in Illustrator with just one click.

vintage retro stylevintage retro stylevintage retro style

1980s Graphic Styles (AI, EPS)

Give your text effect that 80s look using this amazing graphic style. Just type in your text and apply the desired graphic style. The pack includes 15 styles that can be easily scaled or edited without losing any quality.

retro graphic styleretro graphic styleretro graphic style

Long Shadow Effect (AI, EPS)

If you're in a hurry or you simply can't be bothered to learn how to add shadow to text in Adobe Illustrator, this fully editable long shadow effect is the perfect solution.

long shadow effectlong shadow effectlong shadow effect

Want to Learn More?

We have loads of tutorials on Envato Tuts+, from beginner to intermediate level. Take a look!

Advertisement
Advertisement
Looking for something to help kick start your next project?
Envato Market has a range of items for sale to help get you started.