Stroke Technique Around Letterforms

drewkopietz's picture

Does anybody know what this thin half-stroke around the outside of these letters is called? Is there a term for referring to it? I see this treatment compiled in a lot of work that you might consider vintage/classic. I wanted to know if creating this effect is easy or something the designer would customize themselves (drawing each stroke)? I know of a similar technique but it doesn't render the same way as the specimens i see on aged labels, etc. I'm perfectly fine with treating the type letter by letter but, if there's another way, I'd like to learn.


satya's picture

I call it Line Shadow. I don't know what others call it. And drawing them with hands is the best way to do it.

Stephen Coles's picture

Satya's right, but in many cases, some careful duplication will do the trick. Yves outlines it nicely in this tutorial.

Stephen Rapp's picture

Maybe John Downer or Charles Borges could elaborate, but I think it's a common shading technique for signpainters. It goes way back and you'd likely see lots of samples in old showcard lettering books.

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