Concatenating Point Type in Illustrator

May 12, 2004 - 2:00am ||| 1 Comment | Add new

A huge issue with moving to Illustrator CS is what happens to the type when you need to "save it back" to an earlier Illustrator format. Since CS has a different type engine … the same one shared by all the Adobe CS apps … the text gets broken up into "point type" when you Export to a previous version of Illustrator or EPS and need to edit it. That's the only way it can maintain the new kerning, for example.

Much more on the new type engine here, by the way:
"Let's Talk About the new type engine" (Adobe Illustrator CS Forum thread)
<//www [dot] adobeforums [dot] com/cgi-bin/webx?13 [at] 166 [dot] CPTYcSJfvP6.0@.2ccdcea3/191" target="_blank">http://www [dot] adobeforums [dot] com/cgi-bin/webx?13 [at] 166 [dot] CPTYcSJfvP6.0@.2ccdcea3/191>

Broken-up point type is a HUGE pain to edit. You can't drag-select with the Text tool across a whole line of type; each drag just selects that one bit of point type, which might be only a couple characters long.

You see this kind of thing a lot when you open a PDF in Illustrator too. The text looks perfect, but when you click in it with the Type or Selection tool, the awful truth is revealed.

Here's the tip: You can use the Selection tool and Type tool to convert point-type text to regular text. Maybe I'm the last living being to learn this, but apparently it's been possible for a long time.

With the Selection tool, drag a selection rectangle over a whole mess o' point-type bits and Cut or Copy it to your clipboard. Now switch to the Type tool and just click (to create one single, long instance of point-type text) or use it to drag out a rectangular text area, and choose Paste. All the text flows in as one selectable, easily-editable chunk.

Now don't get too excited, remember that you'll lose the kerning and spacing of the original point-type text, and your line endings may be different. But at least it works!

Comments (Subscribe to Comments RSS)

1 November 30, 2011 - 12:53pm by arraial d'ajuda (not verified):

Indeed when you try to open a PDF in Illustrator the text looks perfect, but when you click in it it looks a whole lot different …
Your tip saved me life! I didn’t know that little trick and as you said aparently it’s around allready a long time.

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