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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Video Tutorial: Creating a Text Outline Effect in Blender

In this short tutorial, we'll take a look at how you can use Blender to create text outline effects. Our goal will be to have the text appear as two-dimensional printed text as opposed to 3D text.

After viewing this tutorial and studying the included references, you will be able to:

  • Add text to a Blender scene and change its font
  • Setup a camera to render a scene orthogonally
  • Create a window to display your rendered scene using the Image Editor
  • Gain control of the bevel of a curve object
  • Control the anti-aliasing of your rendered scene using the OSA filters
  • Create a text outline effect
  • Remove shadows and lighting from an object's material
and more...

Additional References:

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Trip Eight said...

Nicely done! This gave me a new perspective on text effects, which was most welcome. I also can't believe I never had my fonts directory set! :o Now I'll never surf for my fonts directory again. :D

Kernon Dillon said...


Yes, it is a true pain to have to navigate to the fonts directory when you don't have the path setup.

I also find that it's best to have a font utility available so you can more easily match the font's filename to the font's proper name. Unless you're already familiar with a font, it can be tough to remember them all.

BTW, congratulations on Part 5 in your Basics series. I like those cool visualization scripts!

eyemeansit said...

Another beautifully done tutorial! Thanks for your investment in the education of us noobs!

Kernon Dillon said...

You're welcome!

Larry Phillips said...

Really good tutorials you are producing here. I'll include your link in my "New to Blender?" sig over at the BA forums.

Looking forward to your snow tutorials.


Kernon Dillon said...

Hey, thanks! I appreciate that!

Anonymous said...

This web site and the accompanying tutorials are so incredibly well done. I'm not sure why you work so hard to provide these for the rest of us, but please know that they are greatly appreciated.

Kernon Dillon said...

Thank you for the kind words!

I do it because I enjoy using Blender and I know that it helps to make things a little bit easier for other Blender users. I remember when I first started looking at Blender and there were only a few effective tutorials available.

Also, when you show others how to do something, it really solidifies your own understanding of the material. You really expose how well you know something when you attempt to teach it to someone else. It closes the loop, so to speak, on the learning process. I often end up realizing that I need to do some more studying of my own! LOL.

I would definitely encourage anyone to create tutorials to help themselves and to help add more learning materials to the community. More and more people have started to do that so, that's great!

Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

Another nice discovery in a one more perfect tutorial!

Thanks Kernon!

Kernon Dillon said...


Anonymous said...

Just to add my name on the list of people who praise your tuts. =)

Thanks a lot, Kernon.

Raydancer said...

Love your tutorials! They're very helpful and well produced. I love that you put the keyboard shortcuts on the screen...that's very helpful. I agree with your comments about how creating tutorials helps solidify your own knowledge..."watch one, do one, teach one"...that's the cycle. Besides, you can often end up learning from those that you teach.

(by the way, at 7:13 it should read "Numpad-1:switch to Front view"...not Numpad-3)

Anonymous said...

in the 'text outline' all goes well until i enter a curve name
in the 'BevOb:' field

the text object then flattens to an outline only

if i enter the curve name in both 'BevOb:' and 'TaperOb:' fields
Blender responds okay but using 'BevOb:' alone gives the response
i have described.

what have i missed with this? i have been over it a number of times.

colin martin

Kernon Dillon said...

Hey Colin, you're right! It appears to be a bug in Blender. I went back to version 2.45 and it worked as expected. I didn't test any versions between 2.45 and 2.48 so there might be other versions after 2.45 that still work with that technique. Sorry for any troubles. I'll be sure to submit a bug report on it.

Unfortunately I can't think of another reasonable way to achieve the same results.

Thanks for pointing it out.

Anonymous said...

bummer, Kernon

it is a great technique

i will look forward to the fix


colin m

Kernon Dillon said...

As a temporary workaround, you could use Blender 2.45 to create the effect and convert the text objects to curves, and then bring them into your latest version of Blender.

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