How to change the colour and text of a logo design in Illustrator

July 29, 2010

Our clients often ask us how to change the color or text of a logo template that they have purchased from us at Today, I am going to teach you how you can modify your logo design in Adobe Illustrator. Changing the color or text in your logo template is actually quite fun and relatively straightforward. You will be surprised at just how much you can do yourself.

Step 1 - Changing the colour of an element in your logo design

Open Adobe Illustrator as well as the vector file (either .ai or .eps) of your logo design. For this tutorial, I will be using one of our logo designs pictured below:

logo template

If you want to change the colour of any of the design elements in your logo design, simply go to the toolbox to the left of your screen and choose the Selection tool. The Selection tool is the first symbol in the toolbox and it looks like this: Selection Arrow You can also simply press 'V' and your cursor will automatically turn into the Selection tool. Now, select the element in your design that you want to change colour. With that element now selected, look again at your toolbox to the left of your screen. Near the bottom, there are two overlapping squares that look like this: Toolbox: coloured Squares If you move your mouse slowly over these two squares, you will see that one if for the fill and one is for the stroke of the element that you have selected. The fill is the inside of the element that you have selected whereas the stroke is a line that outlines the element that you have selected. In this example, my selected element has a light blue fill and no stroke. The square that is in front is the one that will be changed if you select a new colour. For example, because the light blue fill is in front of the empty stroke, when I select a new colour, it will change the fill colour of the element that I have selected.

There are two ways that you can choose the color of either the fill or the stroke of your element:

1. In the main menu that runs along the top of your screen, go to Window -> Swatches. You will see that the swatches palette pops up on the right of your screen. If you select any of these colours, the colour of the foreground square will change as well as the corresponding part of the element that you have selected.

2. If you want to add a custom colour, select the element whose colour you want to change. Again, look at the two squares at the bottom of the toolbox that represent that elements stroke and fill. If you double click on either of these squares, a new dialogue box will pop up where you can either input custom color values or select a custom colour using the colour picker.

Here is a screen shot of what it will look like when you change an elements colour in your design:

Screen shot of how to change the colour of an elelment of your logo design

Step 2 - Modifying the text your logo design

Next, I want to show you how you can change the text in your logo design. Look at your toolbox to the left of your screen. Select the Type tool. The Type tool is It is the sixth symbol in the toolbox and it looks like a 'T': Text tool in Illustrator You can also just press 'T' and your cursor will automatically turn into the Type tool. Now, move your mouse over the text in your logo design. Hovering over any part of the text, double-click on that text. You will see that your cursor is now flashing black inside the text like in the picture below.

Flashing cursor in your logo design

You can now change the words of the text to anything that you would like. For example, I can change my logo design so that it now reads 'Pixellogo'

Pixellogo logo design

Step 3 - Changing the colour of the text your logo design

If you want to change the colour of the text in your logo design, follow the same steps that you used to change the colour of other elements in your logo design. In review, choose your Selection tool, select the text that you would like to change and then, using one of the two methods described above, change the colour of your text.

Here is an example of how I changed the colour of the text in the logo design. I changed it so that there is no fill and a red stroke.

Changing text colour in a logo design

Step 4 - Changing the size, leading, kerning and line height of the text your logo design

You can also make several other changes to the text in your logo design by opening the Character Palette. Go to WIndow -> Type -> Character. This will open your Character palette which looks like this:

Character palette in Illustrator

You should play around with each of these options so that you full understand what you can do. Make sure that your text is selected. Remember that to do this, you have to choose your Selection tool from the toolbox and simply, click once on the text that you would like to change. Now, looking at the Character palette, the first two drop down menu items are how you can change the font used in your logo design and whether it is bold, regular or italic. Look now at the four drop down menus on the bottom of the Character palette. You can play with the first one on the upper left to change the size of your font. The drop down menu next to it (the top right) changes the line height. The line height corresponds to the distance between each line of your text. The bottom two drop down menus correspond to the leading and kerning of the letters of your text. Experiment with these to values to see what you come up with.

Here is a free sample to download and see how its built, click here to download.

Experiment with both the Illustrators colour and text functions. If you have any questions, feel free to post them at the end of this tutorial and I will be more than happy to help you out.

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