Although it is generally not recommended to open in Illustrator a PDF generated, for example, from InDesign or QuarkXPress, or simply generated from Illustrator but saved as PDF/X, we eventually end doing it at some point when the source file is not available and we simply want to pick up some graphic assets to reuse in a new design work. We can notice then that the paragraphs are always split into several left-aligned point texts, that some characters originally affected by an horizontal scale in the source file appear affected by an inverse vertical scale and a different point size, that some characters, especially dingbats, sometimes turn out converted to outlines, etc. This extension for Illustrator CC+ (html5 panel not compatible with old CS versions), baptized «Text rebuild tools», gathers a few functions, some of them already published here as separate jsx scripts, to help recreate and rebuild editable lines/paragraphs/stories from these items.

Javascript Adobe IllustratorYou may have ever noticed, when opening in Illustrator a PDF file generated for example from InDesign, that some characters affected by an horizontal scale in the indd source file become affected by an inverse vertical scale and a different point size (that phenomenon seems to occur only in the case of characters manually condensed using an horizontal scale below 100%, and not in the case of manually extended characters). For example, some text with size 20pt and a 80% horizontal scale ends up with a size of 16pt with a 125% vertical scale, with a visually identical result. In the case of a 90% horizontal scale the inverse result is a 111.1111111111111…% vertical scale, rather inconvenient rational number.

Javascript Adobe Illustrator

When you open in Illustrator a PDF file generated from InDesign or QuarkXPress, you certainly noticed that the paragraphs are always split into several text frames, at least one for each text line but often you even see multiple contiguous text frames on the same line. If you do not have available the source file and you want to be able to edit the text from the PDF using Illustator, it is more convenient to have one single text frame with several lines, where you can then insert or delete words or whole lines, modify the leading, alignment, kerning, tracking, etc.

As i promised you in my first article "Fit a text to an outline", here is a script that will enable you to merge text parts together to get multi-line text frames.

aiSomeone provided you with a file (such as ai, pdf, eps) and you are now asked to edit a text line in it using Illustrator, but unfortunately this text has been converted to outlines sad


If you have ever been through this before, you know that you have to cope with some difficulties to get to it : identify the font, get it (legally !) and load it, if this font is not already in your system or font manager, and finally recreate the text with exactly the same typeface size and horizontal scale.
This simple script without any dialog box nor option will help you to accomplish the last step by enabling you to fit exactly the text to the bounds of a vector object. For example you type and format with the needed font the first letter of the text you want to recreate, you select both the text and the corresponding outline and the script fits the text to the outline.

ajuster le texte au trace ai015 2

If you actually used the same font as the original, you will be able to check by zooming in up to 6400% the perfect superposition of the character on the outline, if not — this generally means that you didn't use exactly the same font version (for example you will never succeed to fit the Adobe Futura to your outline if the font originally used was Futura BT).

If the whole line has the same character attributes (same font, same weight, same typeface size, etc.) all you have to do now is to type the other letters and modify if needed the kerning method and letter/word spacing to get a satisfying superposition of the whole recreated text line on the reference outline. The script can also fit a text including several characters to a selection of several vector objects, but the result will not be satisfying if the kerning and justification are not appropriate. If you have several fonts and styles in the same line, then you will have to recreate it in several parts that you will be able to merge using this other script or a similar script that i wrote myself, that should give better results and that i will also upload soon [PS: a promise made is a debt unpaid].

Tested from CS5 to CC2015.

Note: the script is intended for outlines converted from horizontal text, possibly extended or condensed, but not rotated nor deformed such as sheared to make false italic. In the case of simple rotation if you manage to estimate the rotation angle of the vector object you should get a correct result if you apply the same rotation to the text sample before launching the script, in the case of skewing, the angle is excessively complex to estimate if the deformation was combined with a non-uniform scale (extended or condensed).

This functionality is now integrated into the «Text Rebuild Tools» extension for Illustrator CC+

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An original idea from Loic Aigon, designed by Eddy.VH. It 's a scripts library for Desktop Publishing Adobe products. Find Javascript for Photoshop, Illustrator, inDesign and Acrobat or ATN scripts ( Photoshop actions ) you need.