When it comes to lettering, 3-D letters are more interesting and jump off the page more than words without the added depth. Whether you write, draw or use graphic design, knowing how to draw 3-D letters can add something special to your creations. You can draw 3-D letters in pencil, paint or make them in Microsoft Word. With some practice, you will be able to create letters that add visual interest to your projects.
3-D Letters in Pencil
There are several ways to draw 3-D letters, but they are all drawn just a little bit differently depending on the final look that you want. You can draw block letters, you can draw your letters with or without shadow or you can draw them with perspective so that all of the lines are leading toward a vanishing point. Regardless of which you choose, your letters will pop off the page.
To begin, use a pencil to print out your words. Space out your letters and words evenly and be sure to leave room between your letters for the magic to happen. Use lines to expand your letters into block letters, fitting them together in whatever way works. Draw lightly so that you can erase unwanted lines when you finish. Next, draw diagonal lines at each corner of each block letter that lead in the same direction or toward your vanishing point. Then, connect the diagonal lines to turn your letters into blocks.
Use your pencil to shade the edges of your 3-D letters to make them pop off the page, and add some shadows or other shading to enhance the effect. If you use shadows, do not forget to be consistent about where the shadows go on each letter. Once you are finished, erase any lines or shadows that do not fit with the final product, and enjoy your art.
Painting 3-D Letters
If you prefer a paintbrush to a pencil, you can also create your 3-D letters in paint. Follow the steps above but use a fine paintbrush to make the smallest lines. Try using different shades of the same paint color to create shadows and depth for your letters. Alternatively, use a thick paintbrush to create block letters, and then use a thinner brush to add the dimensional effects. If you practice and experiment with different techniques you can create a wide variety of 3-D letters. You can also try drawing your 3-D letters on canvas following the steps above, and then using paint to shade and fill in the letters.
Creating 3-D or Block Letters in Word
To create block or 3-D letters in Word, you will use Word Art. Open a new document and click Insert, and then the button labeled Word Art. Choose the first lettering option and type your text into the box, replacing the default wording with your own. Click OK and your words will appear on the page. Choose a font and size that matches what you need and watch the lettering on the page change with each option.
To add shadows, double click on Word Art to get to the correct toolbar. Then, click the box labeled Shadow Effects. Use the Shape Fill and Shape Outline options to change the color of your text and its outline. Next, use 3-D effects to make the letters look as though they are jumping off the page. Do not be afraid to experiment with the different effects, since they can give your letters a unique look.
Stacy Zogheib's writing has been published in various online publications including Classroom.Synonym. She is a teacher and developmental specialist with experience teaching first grade, special education and working with families of children ages 0 to 3. She has a Bachelor of Arts in elementary and special education from Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio and a Master's degree in Early Childhood Education from Northern Arizona University.