I don't like the way these "doubled" letters look. How can I make it look better?
As a composition your background elements need to match your foreground elements or vice-versa. I would use some of the hues in the bg to put into the letters and instead of having a drop-shadow of the yellow letter as orange which is too close to the same hue to visually differentiate, choose something that contrasts more. Also, do something different with the black outline that you have. If you need it then perhaps consider making it thinner and applying it to both the foreground letters and the drop-shadow letters separately or as a United object.
There was a thread where someone explained in detail but I can't find it so, explained briefly: with the type object selected, in the Appearance panel create a new fill with desired color and move it below Characters, Then apply a transform effects to the fill as shown. You can play with combinations of the Move and copies settings to change the appearance
I looked again but didn't manage to find it, I can help you if you tell me where you have difficulties reproducing may example.
If your letters are outlined (not live type object) it is still the same. Select only the front paths (you don't need the copies behind) and in the Appearance panel press the second button from left or right at bottom of the panel to create new or duplicate of the fill item. With the lower fill item highlighted, change its color and using the fx button choose Distort and Transform > Transform and refer to the image in my previous post.
In your example it looks like you did more than what you described, though. The forground gold and background black look as though they're connected -- the steps you listed wouldn't produce that result. They'd produce a background black that is just a copy of the letters. To explain what I mean better, look at the bottom of the r: the bottom corners extend diagonally from the black up to the gold. It creates a 3-D-ish effect, and the steps you gave wouldn't do that.
You can then do something that might work for ou as well.
You can add more copies of the second fill (black) and give it ww very small move distance like .01 inch with say forty copies.
Then can expand the appearance which will give you outline Text and an image for the Shadow
slecting the hadow image you can do a live trace using the preset for Black and White Logo there will be a clipping path around the art but that can be easily selected with the direct select tool and deleted.
You get art like this…
The blend method doesn’t seem to present any problems if you use enough steps.
Use the blend to make the black thickness, then Copy the foremost object, Deselect and Paste to Front. Alter the colour.
I tried adding an extra fill to the front object of the blend using the Appearance panel but that produced a strange banded effect to the thickness.
Strange that you can’t control blends to blend only colours or only shapes.
Reckon it’s time for a feature request.
The text has got a gradient in it.
If you look carefully you will see that the colour goes from warm yellow at the top to whitish yellow in the middle and then back to warm yellow at the bottom.
To get a gradient to work in live text (that is to say without outlining it) you must open the Appearance panel and select Add New Fill in the panel’s flyout menu.
If you don’t mind outlining the type you can apply a gradient the regular way but you would do best to make a compound path of it first.
The other thing that is going on here is the careful choice of colours.
The effect is called Simultaneous Contrast.
The background colour is nearly (but not quite) a complementary of the yellows in the lettering.
"To get a gradient to work in live text (that is to say without outlining it) you must open the Appearance panel and select Add New Fill in the panel’s flyout menu."
Those are powerful words! I never would have figured this out myself. I just would NOT have been able to.
Again, I cannot thank you enough. Wow, this forum is AWESOME !!!!!!!
I don't fully understand what you are talking about, but you gave me just enough knowledge to COMPLETE my task by taking apart each letter (took forever) and adding a gradient to each one.