Not everyone has the ability to pay a monthly subscription for apps that do everything and anything so there’s a vacuum to be filled at the lower end of the market. For graphic designers on a budget, those who need affordable tools, and who don’t have the time or money for a two-year course to learn Photoshop and dabble in Illustrator, there’s a better way.
When Text Becomes Art
One of my favorite Mac apps for many, many years is Art Text (for Mac and Windows), a cleverly designed utility that produces complex vector graphic elements (like Illustrator) but with a toolset that is menu driven, easy to master and use, especially for the web design community.
ArtText uses a variety of graphic elements which combine to create, well, art from text and shapes. Here are some samples to whet your appetite.
The question to ask is, “How do I get such logo designs on my Mac?”
The process is easier than you might expect. First, Art Text is all menu driven. Select text, fonts, styles, and graphic elements from menus which display the elements first. Each element has granular controls over opacity, layers, positioning to the pixel, angle of shadows, stroke, colors, and everything else.
Layers let you apply on styled object over another with ease. Point and click. Because the elements are vector-based, moving layers and images and art around on the screen is child’s play, including resizing the whole shebang or a single element.
Art Tex controls, while extensive, are not difficult to master; in many cases purely self explanatory, but you’ll find trial and error to be either your master or slave, because each element you drop into a log design or graphic element has many controls.
Options abound in Art Text, too. Hundreds of customizable start templates, hundreds of built-in vector icons and shapes, or create your own in the vector editor. Bend and warp text 23 different ways. Need details? There are 250 shaders and 190 photo textures which can applied to shapes.
New to graphic design but want to learn? Start with the built-in Template Gallery and within minutes you can create something like this. Drag and drop. Point and click.
Really, none. Well, one. ArtText is one of my go-to tools when I need a graphic element for a presentation or a few logo designs for a client project. I bought the Printfolio Bundle so the upgrade process has gone a bit wonky, but that’s not an issue with the app itself. Highly recommended.