In this tutorial, you will learn how to achieve the following fancy 3D typography effect using Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop in just a couple of steps.

A picture that show the wording red design - custom typography made with Illustrator's Extrude & Bevel

1.Open Adobe Illustrator and create a new .ai file:

New Illustrator file

2.The Type tool

Select the Type Tool(T) and add the red text using these settings and the #B3B3B3 color:

Type tool settings

If you don’t see the Type window you can bring it to the front using the top menu using Window > Type > Character.

Below is the result you must achieve, note the reduced spacing between the letters:

The word red with reduced letter spacing

To continue customizing this text, right-click on it and select Create Outlines to transform the text into editable shapes.

Outlined red word

3.Customize the text

First, create a new shape using the Rectangle Tool (M) like in the following example:

A red rectangle on a gray red word

Now with the Pathfinder window activated (Shift+Ctrl+F9 or Window > Pathfinder), select the new square shape and the “e” shape from the “red” text and click on “Minus Front” as showed:

Create a compound shape and substract from shape area

The result after we use the Pathfinder will look like this:

Custom text made by subtracting from shape area

4.Add the design text

Note that the type settings are the same as I used for the “red” text, just that in this case the letters are capitalized.

Capitalized red design text

5.Use the Pathfinder again

Use it as shown earlier to “cut” the “red” text and make it look like this:

Custom red text, cut below

6.Extrude & Bevel

With the “DESIGN” text selected from our layer palette go to Effects > 3D > Extrude & Bevel and apply these settings to add a 3D effect to the text:

Illustrator 3D Extrude & Bevel settings

3D effect for the design text

7.Stylize with Adobe Photoshop

Export the content as .png and open it with Adobe Photoshop. You need now to create custom shapes to add lights and shadows to the design. To do that just select the Pen tool (P) from the left menu and start creating shapes as shown. Select the #ffffff color as the background and reduce its opacity to, let’s say, 20%.

Lights effect on a D letter

This should be the result after adding lights:

Lights effects on a red design text

Plus some shadows:

Shadow effects on a red design text

That’s it!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Below you can find the final result.

Download source files