Creating cursive-style text in Illustrator


What is the most efficient way to create cursive-styled text in Illustrator?

I'd like to create a text logo in Illustrator in a cursive/signature style, but the only methods I know (existing fonts, manual drawing, image tracing) seem tedious. Is there another way of generating cursive text, or will I have to choose one of the above methods?


Cursive logo example

6/1/2015 4:40:00 PM

Accepted Answer

This is just really a broad question.

  1. People good with calligraphy will often create type by hand on paper, scan, trace in a vector app and clean up. Using calligraphy pens or brushes by hand will often result in unique letterforms that couldn't effectively be created digitally.

  2. Those adept with software may draw straight in an application. Some may use things like a Cintiq or tablet to assist with this -- offering the manual expression to a degree, but skipping any scan/clean up.

  3. Others may just pick a font. There are a ton of script fonts out there. Some will then modify letterforms in the font, others won't.

Depending upon your desired results and skills, any of these may be the "most efficient" way to create custom script lettering.

I've used all three. I'm not wonderful at #2 though. So I tend to use 1 and 3 most often. 1 when I've got the luxury of time and 3 when I don't and depending upon the project. I much prefer 1 when possible.

6/1/2015 7:04:00 PM