How to Do Baseline Shift on Illustrator

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Adobe Illustrator's Baseline Shift effect changes the elevation of selected text. By default, text uses a Baseline Shift of zero, which means the bottom of the text is positioned directly on the baseline. Increasing the Baseline Shift value raises the text above the baseline to give a floating appearance. Likewise, decreasing the value drops the text below the baseline. An example of a time you might use this feature is when assigning text to a path. Depending on your Baseline Shift value, you can have the text follow the outer or inside edge of the path.

  • Click the "Selection Tool" button from the Tools panel or press "V."

  • Click the text box you wish to change. To simultaneously select multiple text boxes, hold the "Ctrl" key while clicking each text box.

  • Click "Character" from the Type bar, and enter a new value in the bottom left Baseline Shift section. You can directly type values, click the incremental arrows or select a value from the drop-down menu. Changes are immediately applied to the selected text.

Tips & Warnings

  • Information in this article applies to Adobe Illustrator CS6. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.

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