Hatch Mark Drop Shadow – Adobe Illustrator Tutorial

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Today I’m going to show you how to add this easy hatch mark drop shadow effect to your text in Adobe Illustrator.

hatch mark drop shadow text effect adobe illustrator

I know hatch mark drop shadow text effect is a mouthful, so here’s a breakdown of what I mean.

A hatch mark simply refers to the little diagonal lines often used in line drawings or sketching to create a shadow-like effect.

Once we create the hatch mark (diagonal lines) pattern, we’ll use it to fill our text and then offset it behind another, solid color text layer.

This is a simple effect that packs a big visual punch!

And the best part is your text will remain completely editable. You can even save this effect as a graphic style to be applied to type in future Illustrator projects.

So roll up your sleeves, fire up Illustrator, and let’s get started!

Want to Learn Adobe Illustrator FREE?

Check out my Easy Beginner Tutorials on Youtube.

If you prefer to watch this hatch drop shadow text effect in Adobe Illustrator tutorial on Youtube, you can do that here instead!

hatch text effect illustrator tutorial on youtube

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 1 – Create a New Document

First, let’s create a new Illustrator document to work in. Feel free to create your canvas to your own specs, but I’m using these settings:

  • Size: 500px width by 500px height
  • RGB color mode
  • 72ppi screen resolution
illustrator document setup

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 2 – Type Out Your Text

Second, let’s type out some text to add our effect to. I think either a bold sans-serif font or a bold block-serif font looks best with this effect, but you can choose any typeface you like.

I’m using the font Gotham Bold in my design, which you can download online.

Psst! If you’re looking for some good fonts to use, Adobe now offers Adobe Fonts as part of your Creative Cloud Subscription. There’s some real gems – check it out!

type in gotham bold

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 3 – Create a Hatch Mark Repeatable Pattern

Before we go any further, let’s create our hatch mark pattern.

The pattern tool allows us to create repeatable patterns and is easily one of my favorite tools in Adobe Illustrator.

To do this, we need to go up to Object > Pattern > Make.

A dialogue box appears- click OK to continue.

object > pattern > make in Illustrator

A bounding box will appear on your screen. My bounding box is 100px by 100px, but yours will be relative to your canvas size.

I’m going to use my pen tool to draw out a diagonal line. I’ll click to place a point in the top left-hand corner of my bounding box, and then I’ll click to place a point in the bottom right-hand corner of my bounding box, creating my line.

Make sure your Smart Guides are turned on while you do this – it will ensure you get things aligned perfectly!

build a repeatable cross hatch mark pattern in adobe illustrator

Instantly, you’ll see the pattern start to take effect. The line is completely editable, so you can select it with your Selection Tool (V) and change the stroke weight and the color.

I’ve set my stroke weight to 3px and the stroke color to yellow #ffc200.

Now let’s drag out a duplicate of this line.

To do this, hold down Shift + Alt/Option on your Keyboard to drag out a duplicate line.

To make sure I have even spacing between my lines, I’m dragging my line out until my Smart Guides indicate I’ve moved it to dX: -5px, dY: 5px.

duplicate hatch line evenly

To finish the pattern, make duplicates of the line until your bounding box is filled. Press Cmd/Ctrl + D on your keyboard to duplicate the lines at even intervals until you reach the bottom left-hand corner.

This should give us ~20 lines inside our bounding box, since 100 divided by 5 is 20. Boom. Math.

fill the bounding box with your pattern

Before I close the Pattern Menu, I’ll rename my pattern to “Gold Hatch,” then Click Done in the bar above.

Our new hatch mark pattern has been added to our Swatches Menu.

Speaking of patterns..

Create an Easy Chevron Pattern in Adobe Illustrator

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 4 – The Appearance Menu

Now that we’ve created the hatch mark effect, let’s first make sure our text is selected and then open our Appearance Menu.

The Appearance Menu is either hanging out in your side toolbar, or go to Window > Appearance to bring it up.

Once it’s open, double click on the word Characters and set the Fill to None. Then click on Type: No Appearance to back out.

under Characters, set the fill to none

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 5 – Create a New Fill Layer

Now click on the Add New Fill icon at the bottom of the Appearance Menu to create a new fill.

I’m going to set this fill to a dark charcoal gray color. The hex code is #444444.

Feel free to add a stroke if you’d like. I’m going to leave my stroke on None.

hatch drop shadow effect illustrator - add new fill

Nothing revolutionary has happened yet – I know. The next step is where the magic happens!

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 6 – Create a Second Fill Layer and Offset It

Click the Add New Fill icon again to create another Fill Layer. Drag this new layer beneath your charcoal fill layer.

Set the fill color to your new hatch pattern. Yes, it’s there in your swatches!

make a new fill layer and set the fill to your hatch pattern

You can’t see it yet, but that’s because we need to offset this new layer.

Make sure your hatch mark fill layer is selected, and click on Add New Effect at the bottom of the Appearance menu.

Select Distort & Transform > Transform.

In the pop up menu that appears, under Move, change the Horizontal and Vertical Values to 8px (or whatever value you like). Make sure Preview is checked so you can see what’s happening.

offset the hatch pattern fill layer in the appearance menu

Voila! Your hatch mark drop shadow has appeared and has been successfully offset. You can keep creating new stroke and fill layers and adding more patterns and colors and offsetting them into infinity.

Do whatever you like- just make sure the type is always selected when you edit it in the Appearance Menu. Otherwise- you won’t see the changes.

finished hatch drop shadow text effect in illustrator

Go ahead and change your text to another word or phrase if you like – the beauty of creating our hatch mark drop shadow text effect in the Appearance Menu is that it leaves our type completely editable.


hatch mark drop shadow text effect adobe illustrator with editable type edit

How to Create a Hatch Mark Drop Shadow Text Effect in Illustrator
Step 6 – Save Your Graphic Style

But wait! There’s one more important step to do. Let’s save this graphic style so you can add it to text in the future.

Select your text and pull up your Graphic Styles Menu. If it’s not in your sidebar, you’ll find it under Window > Graphic Styles.

Simply click on the New Graphic Style icon to add your new style.

add hatch drop shadow effect to graphic styles menu

With your new style selected, Click on the Graphic Styles Libraries Menu and select Save Graphic Style.

name your graphic style

Give your Style a name and choose Save. Now if you create a new Illustrator Document, you’ll always be able to find this style again under the Graphic Styles Libraries Menu > User Defined.

saved graphic styles under user defined

That’s it!

If you recreate this hatch mark drop shadow text effect in Illustrator, be sure to tag me on Instagram @makerlex so I can check it out!

And be sure to pin this image to come back to this post or share it with friends.

Hatch Text Effect Illustrator

Happy Making!

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