In this tutorial I will show you the steps I took to create this  delicious candy cane type design using Illustrator and Photoshop. Apply this effect to your own text and create cool and unique Christmas cards!

Difficulty: Intermediate – Advanced
Completion time: 1 hour
Tools: Illustrator CS3, Photoshop CS3

CANDY CANE TYPOGRAPHY FINAL IMAGE

final designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 1

Open Illustrator and create a new document of “Letter” setting in CMYK color mode at 72 dpi.

1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 2

Grab the Rectangle Tool (M) and draw a gray rectangle like below.

2 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 3

Draw another rectangle, but make it a lot thinner than the previous. Also change its color to red or another color contrasting the first.

3 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 4

Grab the Selection Tool (V) and rotate the second rectangle. You don’t have to be very precise with it, just follow your artistic sense.

4 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 5

Hold the ALT key and click-drag the red rectangle to the right. Hold SHIFT key while dragging to move it orthogonally.

5 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 6

Hit CTRL+D three times. This will duplicate your last command input – in this case, copying a shape.

6 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 7

Select the gray rectangle lengthen it a bit, copy it (CTRL+C) and paste it to front (CTRL+F). Hit CTRL+SHIFT+] to bring it in front of the other shapes.

7 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 8

Remove its Fill, select all the red rectangles and right-click > Make Clipping Mask. Select all artwork (CTRL+A)  and hit the Merge button. Then paste in front a copy of the merged shape (CTRL+C > CTRL+F). Grab the Eraser Tool (SHIFT+E), hold the ALT key and erase the left side, along with a part of the red stripe.

8 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

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8.2 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 9

Move the copied shape to the right until the first red stripe aligns with the second stripe from the shape below it. Reduce Opacity to see it better. Now select the shape above and set its Fill color to black.

9 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

9.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 10

Grab the Selection Tool (V), select the black rectangle, hold the ALT key and click-drag the middle distortion point, like below.

10 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 11

In the Pathfinder window (Window > Pathfinder), click the Merge button. Then select all artwork and hit Merge again. Grab the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the black rectangle and hit Delete.

11 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 12

Select all artwork and click-drag it into the Brushes palette (F7) Set it to “Pattern Brush”. Grab the Path Tool (P) and draw a long straight path. Then click the brush you just created. This is a good way to check if your pattern is correct.

12 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

12.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 13

Click the Grab the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw a circle. Hold the SHIFT key while click-dragging to make it perfect.

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STEP 14

Click the rectangular shape and copy the Height value from the top menu bar. Select the circle and paste this value to Width and Height.

14 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 15

Select both shapes and align them to horizontal axis. CTRL+click near the design to deselect, then grab the Direct Selection Tool (A) and select the left side anchorpoint of the circle and hit Delete. Align

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15.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

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STEP 16

Grab the Selection Tool (V) and align the resulting shape like in the image below. Slect the rectangle and ALT+click-drag to create a copy. Realign the copy with its original, just like in STEP 9.

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STEP 17

Select the half-circle, remove its Fill, hold SHIFT and click the rectangle behind it. Now right-click > Make Clipping Mask. In the Pathfinder window (Window > Pathfinder), click the Merge button.

17 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

17.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 18

Open the Swatches palette (Window > Swatches) and click-drag the resulting shape into the palette. Name this “candy-end”. In the Brushes palette (F5), select our brush. Make sure you have everything deselected (CTRL+click in a blank area).

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STEP 19

Open the dropdown menu and select Options. Click the last box and select “candy-end” from the list. Hit OK. Select the practice path and click the brush again. See how it looks.

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19.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 20

Do the same for the other end of the path.

20 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 21

Now that we have a candy-like pattern brush, lets create the text. I used “Giddyup Std” font as reference. Grab the Horizontal Type Tool (T) and type the text below. Use multiple rows.

21 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 22

Select all text and go to Object > Expand, then go to Object > Path > Clean up.

22 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

22.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 23

In the Layers palette (F7), click the “Create New Layer” button and lock the layer below it. Select the newly created layer.

23 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 24

Grab the path tool and trace the text, but do not follow it entirely, feel free to connect words, add loops and cool knots. When you’re done tracing, select all these paths. Get creative!

NOTE: If you want to change colors, simply go to the shapes created, change their colors and create a new brush. My color choice was light gray with pink. The black background if for the pics to be more clear, adding this is not compulsory.

24 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 25

Go to Object Expand Appearance, then go to the Pathfinder window and hit “Merge”, then go to  Object > Path > Clean up.

25 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

25.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

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STEP 26

Open Photoshop and go to File > New to create a new document of 1600 x 2300 px in RGB color mode at 72 dpi.

26 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 27

Grab the Gradient Tool (G) and apply the gradient shown below to the background layer.

27 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

27.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 28

Click-drag the vector text from Illustrator to Photoshop resize it a bit and hit enter. Right-click near the layer thumb, select “Rasterize Layer”, then click the “fx” button and select Blending Options. Use the settings below.

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28.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

28.2 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

28.3 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

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STEP 29

Create a new layer (CTRL+SHIFT+N), set Blending mode to Multiply, grab the Brush Tool (B), set Hardness to 0% and remove any extra setting from the Brushes palette and paint some shadows to give it a more 3D look. Use a dark purple color.

Tip: CTRL+click the text layer and go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All.

29 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 30

Create a new layer (CTRL+SHIFT+N) and place it below the text layer, grab the Brush Tool (B), set Hardness to 0% and remove any extra setting from the Brushes palette and paint some shadows, as if parts of the text bend away from the wall.

30 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 31

Open the “paper texture”. Select all (CTRL+A), copy it (CTRL+C) and paste it into our document (CTRL+V).Place the layer above the background layer. Resize it to fit the canvas and hit Enter. Set Blending mode to Multiply.

31 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 32

Go to Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid color… and Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Color Balance, Black & White. Use the settings below for each.

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32.1 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

32.2 designioustimes candy cane type tutorial How to Create Candy Cane Typography with Photoshop and Illustrator

STEP 33

Select all artwork (CTRL+A, copy merged (CTRL+SHIFT+C)  and paste it. Go to Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask. Hit OK.

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DONE!

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About the Author: Alex Roman

I’m a 23-year old independent graphic artist based in Romania, Bucharest. I design beautiful, engaging user experiences and intuitive user interfaces for the web. I really love what I do. Want to hire me? Follow me on Facebook or Twitter.





  • Zoey:

    Oh my god, you are truly a pro, I hope one day to be that good.

  • Nancy Rod:

    Great Stuff.. Now if I could just get the hang of this place I’m sure I’ll love it yaayyyyyy

  • Hannnah:

    Oh goodness. Its really great!

  • Garry:

    Wow.. Awesome…!
    Wonderful creation