You should be able to do it with Live Type.
Otherwise, you may select all the letters and Object>Compound Path>Make, then create the mask.
You are doing it the wrong way, most likely. When you convert type or expand objects, the will be grouped. You need to ungroup them first, then dissolve all per-letter compound paths. then select everything again and turn it into one big compound path object. Clipping masks work perfectly with this. Likewise, if your text is unchaged, you can use the live text object without any extra conversions.
Thanks for the reply. What do you mean... then dissolve all per-letter compound paths. Do you mean select each letter form and release compound path? Also, how do you do the live type way? Where is that located? In the Graphic Styles Libraries?
The error I get is...Can't make a coupound path. All objects in a compound path much be paths, and they cannot be brushed or be part of an object.
At least in 10, it is possible to:
A) With the Live Type on top,
1) Select all and Object>Clipping Mask>Make.
B) Starting with the Live Type on top,
1) Select the Live Type and Type>Create Outlines, this creates a Group of Compound Paths forming the letters,
2) Select the Group of Compound Paths and Object>Compound Path>Make
3) Select all and Object>Clipping Mask>Make.
In both cases, the shapes of the letters will be filled with the artwork underneath.
Thanks!! It finally worked!
You are welcome, Sabrina.