Retro 3D Logo
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Hello! My name is Liz Staley and I’m a long-time user of Clip Studio Paint (I started using the program back when it was known as Manga Studio 4!). I was a beta-tester on the Manga Studio 5 program and for Clip Studio Paint, and I have written three books and several video courses about the program. Many of you probably know my name from those books, in fact. I write weekly posts on Graphixly.com and on CSP Tips, so be sure to come back every week to learn more Clip Studio Tips and Tricks from me!
There are tons of tutorials out there for the CSP Perspective rulers (which is probably my favorite feature of Clip Studio!) but most of them show how to draw buildings and cityscapes. But the perspective rulers can help with so much more than just backgrounds and environments. In this article we’ll combine text functions, perspective rulers, and drawing and painting to create a logo with a 3D and retro look.
In this article we will cover the following topics:
Making the Logo Text
Let’s dive right in!
Making the Logo Text
To start this project off, I first needed to find a font that had the look I wanted for my text. I knew I wanted to create a “retro” logo so, after deciding on the words for my logo (which came from a random word generator for the purposes of this tutorial), I headed to my favorite free font website. After downloading a few candidates that I thought might work for the text, I installed the fonts to my computer and headed into Clip Studio Paint.
If you’re not sure how to install fonts, you can do an internet search for instructions for your operating system. Each one is different so it would be impossible for me to cover instructions for every OS in this article.
Create a new canvas in Clip Studio Paint, then use the Text Tool to add the words you want to turn into a 3D logo to the canvas. I got the words “Dynamic Bubble” from a random word generator and thought they were a cute fake name for something, so that’s what I’ll be using for this example.
Highlight the words and then, in the Tool Property window, locate the Font dropdown menu. This is where we can change the font face to one of the designs installed on our computer.
By default, the Font list shows the name of each font in the style of that font. Find the font that you like and select it to change the highlighted words to that font face.
I like this font for my text but I’m not happy with some of the proportions and spacing between the letters and the lines. But that’s okay, we can fix all those issues!
In the lower right corner of the Tool Property window for the Text tool, click on the icon that looks like a little wrench. This will open the Sub Tool Detail window, which shows all the options for the current subtool. (The Tool Property window, by default, only shows the most common options)
On the left side of the Sub Tool Detail window, click on the Line spacing/alignment category. Then locate the line spacing slider. This slider allows the space between selected lines of text to be increased or decreased by either clicking and dragging on the slider or using the up and down arrows to the right of the slider.
I made the space between my two lines of text smaller to bring the words closer together.
I also noticed that in this font, some of the letters are touching while others have a lot of space between them (mainly the “bb” in “Bubble”) so I want to fix that as well by bringing the letters closer together.
To change the space between letters, click on the Font category on the left side of the Sub Tool Detail window, then locate the Character Spacing slider. This works the same way as the Line space slider we used just a moment ago. In the example below, I’ve brought the spacing of all the characters closer together.
However, I still wasn’t happy with all the spacing. By highlighting only specific characters, you can constrain the Character Spacing slider to adjust only those characters. For instance, in the screenshot below, I’ve highlighted the “Bu” and adjusted the spacing to make them a little further apart again.
After tweaking the spacing between some of the other letters, this was what I ended up with for my final “logo”.
Now that we have our text, we can work on making them look like they’re 3D!
Let’s start making the 3D effect now. Before starting, I made a copy of my original text layer and hid the original layer. I’ll be working with the copy layers, preserving the original in case something happens and I need to go back to the original.
In the following screenshot, the Layers palette shows the original text layer below a copy layer. The original text layer is hidden. I also rasterized the copy layer, but this is optional.
Make the text the size you want and position it on your canvas where you’d like it to be. I wanted to make the 3D effect coming from the bottom and going up toward the left, so I positioned my text in the top left of my canvas.
Now we’ll need to set up a perspective ruler. This subtool can be found under the Ruler tool. We’ll use the Perspective Ruler to help us draw the lines of our 3D letters. Check to make sure that the Process dropdown in the Tool Property window is set to “Add Vanishing Point”. Then pick a spot on one of your letters that you want to draw a guide from. Click on that spot and drag to create a guide. In the screenshot below I selected the point on the end of the “c” to be my first guide because it’s the point furthest to the right in my text.
To have a vanishing point we need to add at least one more guide. I chose a point on the left side of the “B”, then clicked and dragged to create a line that intersects with the first line. The intersection is the vanishing point for our perspective ruler.
Once two guides are laid out and a vanishing point is created, a horizon line and a vertical line will also be created by Clip Studio Paint as part of the perspective ruler. These lines are very handy in other applications of this ruler tool, but we won’t be worrying about them today. You can see the horizon line that’s been added in the screenshot below.
If you want all the lines to converge to a singular point far in the distance, you could start drawing lines going back to the vanishing point now. However, I want the logo to only go back a bit and then stop, so a little more preparation is needed.
First, I put down several more guides at key points along the words so that I could ensure that everything stayed aligned in the next step. We will be working with several different layers, so it’s always helpful to check and make sure that the Perspective Ruler is set to “Show in All Layers”. This can be done by making the layer the ruler is on the active layer, then clicking on the Set Ruler Range icon in the Layer palette, then clicking on “Show in All Layers”.
Next, make a second copy of the text layer. We’ll be using this as a reference for the “back” of the letters (aka the edge that is furthest away from the viewer). If your text is made up of all straight lines you can omit this step, but since my font has a lot of curves I wanted to make sure I could keep the letters looking correct.
Now, using the guides and the Scale/Rotate function, move one copy of the text so that it is closer to the ruler’s vanishing point. You will need to change the scale of the text copy so that the points on the copy match up with the guides for the same points on the ruler. In the screenshot below, note that the copy (in burgundy) has been scaled down and moved so that it fits within the ruler guides all touch the same places on both the original and copy layer.
Next, create a layer between the top and bottom copies of the text. This is the layer we’ll be drawing our perspective lines on.
With the drawing tool of your choice, begin drawing the lines for the edges of your letters. I found it easiest to start on the bottom word first so that I wouldn’t get confused, since the lines for the top letters won’t be seen where the bottom letters cover them up.
Be thorough in this step, making sure to check for any edges you may have missed. For instance, in the screenshot below, the top right edge of the B is missing, a mistake that I didn’t catch until the coloring phase of this creation! But that’s okay, I simply went back to the lines layer and added it in once I noticed it.
The rounded edges of the letters were done by increasing the Stabilization on my drawing tool and then carefully tracing the edges of the letters on the copy layer to fill the space between each of the perspective lines.
With the lines complete, I hid the copy text layer. Then, using additional layers, I added color and shading to the 3D logo. For a final touch of “retro” look, I used the Retro Tone by CSP User puddingness to add a slight texture and get the look of an old printed item. (You can get that same tone here: https://assets.clip-studio.com/en-us/detail?id=1926070 )
And our “retro 3D logo” is complete!
This is not the normal thing that you probably think of when you think of the CSP Perspective Ruler, but I hope that if it’s not then this has shown you a different way to use this incredibly powerful tool. With a little planning and ingenuity, you can create all sorts of things with the Perspective Ruler!