How to Make a Retro Tee Graphic with Adobe Illustrator | Adobe Creative Cloud

Combine typography and ornamental glyphs to create a design from decades past. Featured Artist: Erica Larson. Check out more of her work here:

Start from scratch, or download practice files [] for a head start. Steps below.

Prep your project:
1. Open the Illustrator practice file (File ¬– Open).
2. Activate the font: If you do not have the Funkydori font from Adobe Fonts synced to your computer, Illustrator will prompt you to activate it.
3. Set type preferences: Uncheck the Fill New Type Objects With Placeholder Text option in Preferences. Select File – Preferences – Type (Windows), or Illustrator – Preferences – Type (macOS).
4. Set document units: Select File – Document Setup. Choose Pixels from the Units drop down.

Decorate the text:
1. Choose the Type (T) tool.
2. Select the ‘t’ in ‘Stay’.
3. Choose the 4th glyph from the options that pop up.
4. Click twice to the right of the word ‘Stay’ to show the text cursor.
5. Choose the Eyedropper tool and click the purple color in the text.
6. Select Type – Glyphs.
7. Select Ornaments from the Show drop down.
8. Double-click the double swash (6th glyph). Close the Glyphs dialog.
9. Choose the Selection tool and drag to move each word and glyph into an arrangement you like.

Add a drop shadow:
1. Use the Selection tool and drag to select all of the text and glyph.
2. Right-click and choose Create Outlines.
3. Keep the text selected and choose Unite – the first icon in the Pathfinder section of the properties panel (Window – Properties).
4. Use the Selection tool to drag the sun from the 2nd artboard over the text on the 1st artboard.

Note: If the sun covers the text, right-click and choose Send to Back.

5. Use the Selection tool to select the text.
6. Select Effect – Stylize – Drop Shadow. Define the drop shadow settings and click OK when done. Here are the settings we liked:

Mode: Normal
Opacity: 100%
X – 4px
Y – 4px
Blur: 0
Color: White (FFFFFF)

Add highlights:

1. Choose the Selection tool and click away from the text to deselect it.
2. Choose the Pencil tool (N).

Tip: Depending on your workspace settings, the Pencil tool will be under the Shaper tool, or the Paintbrush tool. Click and hold the main tool to show additional options.

3. Draw highlights on the glyphs and letters. Here are the Pencil settings we used:

Tool Options: Fidelity is set to Smooth
Fill: None
Stroke: White, 3px

Tip: The Tool Options button is at the top of the Properties panel.

4. Choose the Width (Shift+W) tool.
5. Click and drag out from the middle of a pencil stroke to create a puckered effect. Repeat for each highlight.
6. Use the Selection tool to select a highlight and choose an option from the Width Profile in the properties panel to refine the shape of the highlight.

That’s it!

To learn more, visit our Illustrator Tutorials page:




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