How to Shadow Letters- 7 Ways

how to shadow letters

Shadow letters are an important aspect of handwriting. Shadow letters are a great choice for eye-catching lettering. Learning how to shadow letters will help your child pay attention to the big picture of how the letters flow together and create words. The key to shadowing is not focusing on individual strokes but all the little details – like crossover and curl strokes. Shadowing practice with a pendulum is also a great way to make any letter or number more independent in any writing.

If you love to write, then you should be putting your writing skills to use. There are many ways that you can do that. Shadow letters are gaining popularity, especially for their ability to add an elegant and classy touch to a page. Now that you know the importance of paying attention to alphabetical order let’s dive in and talk about the best ways to shadow letters. This post will teach you how to shadow letters in 7 ways like a pro.

Where to Add the Shadows

Your source of light is your most important rule. You need to decide from where you are going to cast your shadows whenever you want to make your letters look shadowed. This decision must be made from the very beginning. Light and shadow are the opposite of each other. Thus, you will add shadows to the areas of your letter that are not accessible to light.

Directions of the Light Source

It is possible to have a light source on every side of a letter. It is just a matter of choosing which side you want the shadow on. If you wish to get the shadow at the bottom or the top of your letters, you can also do that. If the box is painted in a simple way, the shadow will be on the opposite side of the light.

We would add some shadow to one side of the letter for a simple variation of this. It’s up to you here whether you only add shadows to your downstrokes or whether you also add some to your upstrokes; that’s entirely up to you. You can also make brush lettering look great just by adding shadows at the downstrokes. You can make your lettering look more special by using this simple technique.

In addition, we can add shadows to two sides of the letters. In most cases, the light source is coming from the edges, so there are two sides to which you can add shadows. Many people prefer adding shadows on one side or one kind of side. It’s easy to decide which version is best for you after trying out the different versions.

You don’t have to be an expert with shadows, especially for beginners. Decide which side you’re going to practice, and focus on developing that side. Once you continue adding shadows to your lettering, you will find that it gets easier.

Make sure you add shadows consistently when adding shadows to your letters. Choose one side of your lettering and stick with it throughout the lettering. Make sure your shadows remain on the same side during the entire lettering piece.

How to Shadow Letters: 7 Ways

Shadows are a great way to automatically give your design an extra bit of depth and interest. Shadows can make your design really stand out from the crowd, making it stick in people’s minds more easily.

Do you want to know the best way to shadow letters? Or, how about the most popular way of doing it? If so, we have got you covered. In this section, you’ll learn seven different ways to shadow letters with examples included.

Method- 1: Add shading Easily

Step- 1: Draw a block letter.

Source: The Happy Ever Crafter

With the help of your sharpie, draw and color in the block letter using the fridge magnet as your inspiration.

Step- 2: Add in some light shading.

Source: The Happy Ever Crafter

Add some shading with your light grey pen in the opposite corner of the frame, where the light is coming from.

Step- 3: Add some depth!

Source: The Happy Ever Crafter

In order to make it stand out just a bit more, shade more on the bottom parts.

Step- 4: Add some dimension!

Source: The Happy Ever Crafter

In between the black and the shading, use a basic white gel pen to fill in the left and bottom edges.

Source: The Happy Ever Crafter

Method- 2: Shadows with Tracing Paper

Your lettering should be written on smooth paper as you always do. You can also write the word exactly the same way in another color by simply tracing over your lettering. Be sure to letter it the same way you lettered your first word.

You have the same lettering twice (almost exactly). You should now decide where the light will be and rotate the letters on the tracing paper the other way. Now you know exactly where the shadows of your words should be positioned. Our tracing paper was moved to the right and down in this example:

As for the gaps between short upstrokes, that’s normal as well. In this way, you will be able to see and know exactly where your shadow strokes should be placed.

Method- 3: Shadows with procreate

You might also use the procreate app when you have an iPad. Additionally, there is an easy section to see where to add your shadows. Simply duplicate your lettering, change the color of one word, and move the lower part of the word.

It is very easy to adjust the shadow with Procreate. By changing the color of your shadow and lighting source, you can, for example, easily alter its appearance. It takes only a few clicks.

Despite their different forms, shadows resemble your original lettering. The light is simply removed from the side of the shadows.

Method- 4: Monoline with Space

To achieve the same look as a monoline, use this similar technique. It is important to keep the main letter a little bit away from the shadow line to achieve this effect. There is more depth with this than with an ordinary monoline, but the space between should be uniform. Make sure to be consistent!

Method- 5: Brush Pen Shadow

Create a shadow along the right side of your letters by using a brush tip pen with a flexible tip. You can control the fluidity of your shadow more easily with this type of pen than with a monoline pen. The style is very basic and is perfect if you are just starting out.

Method- 6: Outline with Shadow

It is also possible to improve your shadow effect by outlining your brush lettering first. Add a shadow to make your letters stand out with a brush pen. Even though this is a simple look, it is very striking.

Method- 7: Cutting Shadow

Digital lettering uses this technique, but it is also effective on analog ones. Instead of normally applying shadows, we are removing some spaces from the letters to create an illusion of shadows. Additionally, it gives the impression that some parts are stacked on top of each other.

What you need:

  • Regular writing tools
  • Pencil
  • Black drawing pen
  • Marker or brush pen

Step- 1:

You should now write a word as you would normally do.

Step- 2:

Make an outline of each letter with a drawing pen.

Step- 3:

Make a layer of outlines that are thicker this time, but keep them still as thin as possible.

Step- 4:

With your black marker, fill in any white spaces that appear between the letters and even inside.

Step 5:

Decide where to place the shadow of the cutting by using a pencil. Make sure that the shadows are placed on the parts that will be visible. Generally, shadows can be found in letters that intersect.

Step 6:

With a drawing pen, complete the cutting shadow.

Final Words

If you have an interest in learning how to shadow letters on your cake, try some of the tips we shared above and see what happens. There you have a few ways to shadow letters in the 7 different methods we outlined above. It really is not that difficult, and anyone can do this if they just focus on practicing consistently. Shadowing should not be viewed as another set of tedious steps to learn but as an opportunity to make letterforms more interesting, tasteful, and an opportunity to add even more beauty to your designs.

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