How to Stretch Text in Photoshop

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One of the many things you can do with Photoshop is to add and stretch text. Why would anyone want to use stretch text? Using stretched text is a great way to make your design stand out. This post discusses how to stretch text in Photoshop.

How to Stretch Text in Photoshop

If you’re a Photoshop user, chances are you’ve had to deal with text that’s either too small or too large for your needs. Luckily, Photoshop offers a few different methods for resizing text and stretching it; horizontally, vertically, or both.

Stretching text is one of the easiest things to do in Photoshop. It gives users total control to stretch individual letters in a text. To perform a stretch text, follow these simple steps.

A woman in pink using her laptop

1. Create or Import the Document

Once you’ve successfully launched Photoshop, you’ll either have to create a new document or import a photo where you’ll write and stretch the text. To create a new document, click on the File tab on the top Menu. The File tab is often the first tab on the menu bar.

On the drop-down menu, click on New. The resulting window menu presents options to choose the layout of the document. Finally, click on the OK tab to successfully create a new document.

To import a photo, click on the File option on the menu bar. Next, locate and click on Folder to open the photo’s location on the computer. Finally, click on the Import tab at the bottom of the screen to successfully import the photo into Photoshop.

2. Activate the Text Tool

On the left side of your computer screen, there’s a vertical Toolbar with options. Locate and click on the Text (T) Tool. It is designated with a T icon.

Clicking (or right-clicking) on the T icon expands four options—horizontal type tool, vertical type tool, horizontal type mask tool, and horizontal type mask tool. As the names signify, selecting any one of them would determine if the written text you want to stress would be written downwards or sideways.

Activating the Text tool opens a list of options at the top area of the screen, underneath the menu bar. You can choose the text font you want to work with. When you’re done, click on the document or photo to write the text.

3. Resize the Text

It’s easy to resize the text to fit into the area of the document or the photo. To do this, press Ctrl+A to select the text. Then, adjust the text size by moving any anchor points inward or outward.

4. Convert the Text Layer

Go to the Text Layer on the right side of the screen. It’s located in the area where new layers are created. Right-click on the text layer to reveal a list of options. Move downwards to locate and click on the Convert to Shape option.

Another way to convert the text to shape is to go to the Type tab on the menu bar at the top of the screen. After clicking on Type, a drop-down menu will reveal a list of options. Next, locate and click on Convert to Shape.

Converting the text to shape immediately changes the editing menu on the right side of the screen to the text Properties tab. A noticeable option on the text Properties tab is Shape Path.

4. Activate the Direct Selection Tool

On the Toolbar on the left-hand side of the screen, locate the Direct Selection Tool. It is located directly below the Text Tool and has a symbol of a white arrowhead as the icon.

Click on it to expand its options. Then, select the Direct Selection Tool. This tool will help you choose individual letters for stretching.

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5. Selecting the Text

With the activated Direct Selection Tool, click on the document or the photo. Next, move the cursor to the part of the letter you want to stretch. Next, hold to form a small rectangle or square and click on it.

This creates several anchor points around that particular letter. However, more often than not, you’ll know the area is selected if the anchor points in that area have a solid blue color.

6. Stretch the Letters

To stretch a part of the highlighted letter, hold the CTRL key and drag it in the direction you want to stretch it. For example, hold the CTRL key and drag down the middle of the selected area if you want to stretch the bottom part of the letter.

The whole letter will move if you fail to hold down the CTRL key while dragging the letter. To undo a mistake, you can use the CTRL+Z shortcut command key.

On the other hand, if you drag any anchor points or dots instead of the middle of the letter, only a corner of the letter will be stretched. So, stretch each letter in any direction that fits your design.

How to Distort Text in Photoshop

Besides stretching text in Photoshop, another common editing process is distortion. A distorted text is another way to make creative text design on documents and photos. The process is easy and simple!

  1. Open a new document or import the photo you want to include a distorted text.
  2. On the Toolbar menu, select the Text Tool to enable you to write on the document. You can also select a unique font for the design.
  3. Proceed to write out the text on the document and adjust it to the size you want.
  4. Locate the text layer on the right side of the screen. It can be found in the layer menu.
  5. Right-click on the text layer to open a list of options. Then, navigate to the Rasterize Type option and click on it.
  6. To be certain you clicked the right option, the text layer would immediately become transparent.
  7. Use the shortcut Ctrl+T to adjust the text to the level of distortion you want.
  8. Adjust and distort the text by using the Alt key to move its corners. Then, with the Alt key pressed down, click on the corner of the text you want to distort. Finally, click on the Enter key when you’re satisfied with the level of distorting to save it.
  9. For a more stylistic text distortion, activate the Wrap Text option.
  10. To do this, highlight the entire text with Ctrl+A and locate and click on the Wrap Text option. It is located on the right side of the Text option bar.
  11. You can choose the Style, Bend, and degree of Horizontal and Vertical Distortion on the Wrap Text menu.
  12. Upon completing your selection, click on the OK tab. The text on the document is immediately distorted with your chosen style.
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Why Is It Important to Stretch Text in Photoshop?

If one thing is hard to argue about stretch texts, it has to be that they stand out. Using stretch text in images gives them a unique aesthetic appeal. Moreover, it can make an unseemingly insignificant text draw viewers’ attention.

Photoshop remains one of the best post-processing software available to edit. It should come as no surprise that it would offer users a simple and easy step to stretch and distort the text.


Incorporating a stretch text into your design can give it an eye-catching look. For Photoshop beginners, adding stretch text to a document is one of the easiest learning steps. To get you started, the article outlines and explains the steps to stretch and distort the text in Photoshop.