Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

This tutorial is designed to help you create cool neon text in Illustrator. Here you will learn some clever techniques to enhance your skills.


Final Image

As always, this is the final image that we’ll be creating:

Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Tutorial Details

  • Program: Adobe Illustrator CS6
  • Estimated Completion Time: 60 minutes
  • Difficulty: Beginner-Intermediate

Resources


Step 1

Create a new document first. Make sure to set the dimensions to Width = 600px , Height = 600px and the Color Mode to CMYK.
And create a rectangle with the Rectangle tool (M). Fill it with the gradient shown below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 2

Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create an ellipse as shown below and set this gradient.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Select the ellipse we have created and go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian blur and set the values.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

With the ellipse still selected, apply Color Dodge and lower Opacity = 50%.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now duplicate the ellipse and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F) , modify the ellipse as shown below and set the Opacity = 100%.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 3

Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create another ellipse and set the gradient as shown below.

Now duplicate (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + V) the new ellipse we have created and place a copy of the shape off to the side of the artboard, which we will use later.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 4

Select the Type Tool (T), click on your artboard and add your text. I’ve used the Dynalight font, then re-select the entire text and go to Object > Expand. This will turn your text into a group of shapes.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Go to Window > Graphic Styles and Open Graphic Styles Library > Neon Effects then select Magenta Neon

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 5

Now duplicate the shape and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F), move it to the right side a little bit. With the shape copy selected, select the Violet Neon in Neon Effect.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

I want the line look thinner, so go to Window > Appearance. Change the values as shown below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now you should get a result like this.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 6

Next, duplicate the shapes and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F) again. With the shapes copy selected, select the Red Neon in Neon Effect.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now apply Hard Light mode and lower Opacity = 20% for our second text copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 7

Duplicate the second shapes copy and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F). With the third shapes copy selected, select the Thick Aqua Neon in Neon Effect.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Apply the Multiply mode for our third shapes copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 8

Next, duplicate the third shapes copy and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F). With the fourth shapes copy selected, select the Thin Aqua Neon in Neon Effect.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Apply the Color Burn mode for the fourth shapes copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 9

Now that you understand how to work with graphic style. Next, duplicate the fourth shapes copy and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F). Select Thin Green Neon in Neon Effect and apply Multiply mode for our fifth shapes copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 10

Next, for the last shapes copy, repeat the previous step and apply Thin Magenta Neon in Neon Effect for the sixth shapes copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 10

In this step, we will create glitter for the background. First, use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create an ellipse and set this gradient.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Go to Window > Symbol, drag the new ellipse we have created to Symbol palette as shown in the image below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Use Symbol Sprayer Tool (Shift + S) to spray the symbol Glitter 1 on the background as shown below. Select all the glitters symbol, then go to Object > Expand. You can resize the glitters to different sizes.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 11

We are going to create another glitter for the background. Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create an ellipse and set this gradient.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now you understand how to work with symbol. Repeat the previous step and name our new symbol as ” Glitter 2 “. Place the Glitter 2 as shown below and apply the Overlay blending mode.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Place the Glitter 2 symbols one more time and resize them smaller, then lower Opacity = 50% as in the image below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

It’s time to place the light bulb on the letters. Continue to place Glitter 2 and apply the Screen blending mode as shown below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now you should have a result like this image below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 12

Back in Step 3, I mentioned placing a copy of the ellipse shape we had created to the side of the artboard. Go ahead and grab that shape now.
With the ellipse shape still selected, go to Object > Transform and set the values as shown below. Don’t forget to press Copy button.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Press Ctrl / Cmd + D four times and you should get the result shown in the image below. Select all the ellipse shapes and group them (Ctrl/Cmd + G).

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Now we apply Overlay blending mode to it.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 13

Now you notice that our design color is not really eye – catching. In this step, duplicate the background and paste in front (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F), then apply Soft Light blending mode to the copy.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 14

Next, grab the Rectangle tool (M) and create a rectangle with the dimensions of Width = 600px , Height = 600px. Fill it with the gradient as below. Then apply Multiply blending mode and lower Opacity = 50% to it.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator
 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Step 15

Duplicate (Ctrl / Cmd + C, Ctrl / Cmd + F) the rectangle we have created and paste in front, then modify the gradient as in the image below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

Lower Opacity = 20% as shown in the image below.

 Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

And We’re Done!

Here is how it should look. I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and can apply these techniques in your future projects.

Creating a Glowing Neon Effect in Illustrator

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