Photoshop Basics: How to Outline Text in Photoshop

17 July, 2019

In this blog post I will show you how to apply an outline stroke to your text in Adobe Photoshop CC.

Step 1 - Open your document or create a new canvas

Open up your document file or create a new canvas with your required dimensions. Here we have a stock image for our example that has a craft work desktop type feel. Select the type tool in the left hand tool bar.

Step 2 - Create your type layer

With the type tool selected, click on the canvas. This will create a new type layer and immediately show placeholder text. You can replace this with your chosen word or phrase.

Step 3 - Change your font and text size

The default font will be what you have previously used. You should now change your font, size and position as you see fit. Our example is League Gothic at size 110. We will also change the font colour to white, so we can see our black outline when we create it.

Step 4 - Add a layer style

Now we need to add our “stroke” layer style. Click on the small “fx” icon at the bottom of the layers panel and select “stroke”.

Step 5 - Add your stroke

You now see a dialogue box with your stroke options. Here you can set the size, stroke position, blend mode, opacity, fill type and colour. Feel free to have a play around with the settings to create your desired look. Our example uses Size 8, Inside position and black colour.

Step 6 - Remove your fill

This is an optional step as you may be happy with your design. However, in our example I would like to remove the fill so you can only see the text outline. With your type layer selected, set your fill to 0%.

Step 7 - Adding a second stroke

It is now possible to have multiple layer effects on a single layer. In our example we are showing 2 different stroke effects on the same layer. To do this click on the plus icon next to “stroke” in the styles list. This will add a second stroke effect.

These effects are layered, so the lower effect in the list will need to be positioned or sized in a way that is visible and not hidden by our black stroke effect. In our example, we have set the colour to yellow with the position set to “outside”. Once again, you can try different options on both stroke layers to create completely different looks.

Step 8 - Finished type

We now have our finished outlined text. Both the text and stroke effects remain fully editable, should you wish to make additional changes.

Written by Will

Creative Director Will has been with Evoluted since 2011. In his role leading the design team, he continues put his extensive experience to use on an impressively-diverse array of websites. Will’s core skills include UX design, creative direction and responsive web design; whilst he’s also earned a renowned reputation as Evoluted’s chief provider of internal, novelty animated gifs.

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