Type Tool

Add a word, phrase or caption to your pictures to help convey a certain message with the easy and fun-to-use Type Tool.

Tutorial Comments

  1. Bob Layt

    Is there any way of enhancing text? (eg. drop-shadow)?

  2. Ausra

    Yes, Bob. You can add drop shadow using the Fonts palette. Choose View > Show Fonts. Expand the Fonts palette by clicking the green button on a very top left. Then, click the fourth “T” button for shadow.

  3. Neil

    First I’d like to say I love Pixelmator and it’s new features.
    I’d love to see this program morph into a vector & bitmap tool, much like Corel Draw & Paint,
    which I feel is one of the most Intuative graphic design tools out there.
    Shame it does’nt work on a mac without the aid of other software. Come on add vector editing!

  4. Ausra


    Vectors are already available in Pixelmator. Here is a video tutorial about it:


  5. RODEO

    Can you make your text more dynamic such as in a wave pattern or circular etc.?

  6. Ausra


    Not yet.

  7. Carol Radek

    I’d like for my text to fill a complex shape (a silhouette of a dog) how do you get a paragraph to fill a shape that doesn’t have straight left or right edges?

  8. Ausra


    I think this is the tutorial you are looking for:


  9. Josh

    Love Pixelmator. Wish there were more options for text though. I like to make joke pics or things making fun of my friends. The ability to add speech bubbles or easily outline text (without workarounds in other layers) to make it readable over top of a photo would be a very welcome addition.

    PS – Anyone else think this video is trying too hard to sound like the Apple commercials?

  10. TSS

    Is there any way to have black text outlined in white? Love pixelmator!

  11. Ausra

    @ TSS: Convert your text into pixels by choosing Layer > Convert into Pixels. Then, choose Edit > Load Selection to load a selection on the text and choose Edit > Stroke to give it an outline.

  12. Brandon

    Just a beginner here. Loving Pixelmator so far. I have been looking for a way to make a “watermark” or “slightly transparent text” but have not figured it out/found it. Is there a specific “watermark” tool or way to change the opacity of text? Thank you. P.S. Really enjoying the new Third Party Tutorals!

  13. darius

    @Brandon: You can change the opacity of your text with the Opacity slider in the Layers Palette. To show Layers Palette in the Main Menu go to View > Show Layers or press cmd+2. Make sure to select the correct layer and set the opacity slider to the desired level.

  14. Katie

    Is there a way to wrap text around a shape or photo?

  15. Ausra

    Hi Katie,

    No, this feature is not implemented yet.

  16. WAIS

    Ok, I have read the above and still don’t know how to create
    a watermark. Do you have a tutorial that clearly outlines this?

  17. Ausra


    Have you got an example of what sort of watermark you are trying to create?

  18. Braden

    thanks, i love how its videos not reading 🙂

  19. Braden

    great website by the way!

  20. Tom

    I would love to see text effects like bevel, glow, shadow, etc. The shadow in the fonts palette is just a simple mac fonts option, not a real design feature like Photoshop. Can you add this to the next update even if we have to pay for it?

  21. Truffy

    @Tom – what do you mean by “real design feature”? The Mac fonts palette allows a fair degree of control already.

    @Neil – if you want more vector control, you could try the vector apps out there. I’d prefer that PM concentrate on the primary focus, specifically bitmap editing/rendering/output. CMYK & LAB would be preferred priorities IMO.

  22. Truffy

    @Josh – yes! The background music is quite distracting.

  23. Bruno

    How to fill the background with a solid colour and add a line for the outline of the text box?

  24. Ram

    Pixelmator is a great app! Love it so far. I was searching for a way to wrap text around images or shapes. I understand this feature is not available yet. Look forward to its addition soon. Thanks.

  25. Ausra

    @Bruno, to fill background with a solid color create a new layer and select Edit > Fill. Then, drag the layer to the bottom in the Layers palette.

    To draw an outline for the text box, use the Rectangular shape and ensure you’ve deselect the Fill option in the Tool Options bar.

  26. cj1490


    I love Pixelmator, but after months of use I am getting really annoyed with the Type tool. I get annoyed at it because when I use multiple Type layers and hide the others, when I add a new Type layer I sometimes select the hidden type layers. Is this just on my side or is this true for all of you guys? Is there a setting that allows me NOT to select hidden type layers with the type tool?

  27. cj1490

    Oh by the way, this is also the same for every hidden layer apparently. I can move hidden layers with the move tool. I don’t want that. I hide them so I can’t see or move them.

  28. Ausra

    @cj1490, are you using the latest Pixelmator? You should be able to select hidden layers.

  29. Freddy

    So can we bevel edges on a letter, like Tom had asked?

  30. Ausra

    @Freddy, not at this moment.

  31. Mike

    How to I learn how to actually use this app. I just keep watching a bunch of videos that talk about the awesome features. I want to figure our how to edit a PDF w/o it looking like it was on with MS Paint. Please help, I picked up this app thinking it would help me in my business but I have no clue how to use it or do what I want to do…. Pretend for a moment, that I am not a graphic designer and I have only recently upgraded from a PC to a MAC and that I understand a small fraction of what my mac and pixlmator can do for me. Or say Im a middle-aged and only type with 2 fingers, How would I use this app.

    Every one of these videos are followed by tons of requests for help using the app. I really want to learn how to use this and just “playing” around with it is zero help

  32. Ausra

    Hi Mike,

    Do you know what exactly you want to accomplish? If you cannot find the help here, email us to support@pixelmator.com. We’ll be happy to help!

  33. Ivan

    In some images letters resize together with the text form. In other images letters keep the original size, so if form gets too small, some letters fall out of view.
    How can I manually control this issue?

  34. Amberia

    I love this app! but would also like to see some more text tools. Like glow and stuff please put those updates in!

  35. Tim

    This seems like a silly video given that all of these features are available in pretty much every non-basic image editing app. Also, I was coming here to find out how to outline text – as was in the search engine description – and it didn’t show me (it’s not available out of the style menu for the font I’m using).

  36. Anne Roura

    is there a way to add effects to text? such as motion?

  37. Ausra

    @Anne Roura, you can add the effects that are available in the Fonts palette (e.g., shadows).

  38. autolounge

    Im curious if there is a way to do, as photoshop calls it, turnaround, for text. Id like the ability to curve a word around an object as desired. Is this possible with pixelmator? Thank you for your time.

  39. Ausra

    @autolounge, not yet.

  40. passe

    how to do text with a colored outline?

  41. Chris

    Love the app! Just re-hashing the question from last year about wrapping text around a shape. Any plans to implement this or is there a way to currently do so?

  42. Tara

    Is there a way to type vertically instead of horizontally?

  43. lwatten

    Is there a way to “undo” the convert to shape? I am needing to find out what font I used for a certain layer and I can’t remember which one I used but can’t seem to see the name of the font after I convert my word to shape.

  44. David

    RE Tara:

    I have not found one. In photoshop there is a vertical type tool. The workaround I found is letter return letter return, etc…

  45. Will

    Is it possible to make the text in a circular lineup?

  46. Andrius (Pixelmator Team)

    Hi Will,

    There isn’t really a way to type along a path (to create curved text) in Pixelmator at the moment. As a workaround, one way to do this would be to to convert the text into a shape and rotate the letters individually. To do that, you can follow these instructions:

    1. Add the text to your image using the Type Tool
    2. Control-click the text layer in the Layers palette and choose Convert Into Shape
    3. (Optional) Draw a path using the Pen Tool, Freeform Pen Tool or add a circle using Ellipse Shape Tool to use as a visual guide for placing the letters
    4. Select the Move Tool in the Tools palette and double-click a letter to select it
    5. Click Edit > Transform (or use the Command-F keyboard shortcut)
    6. Rotate the letters individually by changing the angle in the Tool Options bar at the top of the document window
    7. Drag them to position them along your visual guide

    I realise that sounds pretty complicated but feel free to try that workaround and don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions!

  47. Adam

    I really don’t like running into functions that make me wish I were in Photoshop. I would not have imagined this function wouldn’t be in PIxelmator until I needed it. As a non-developer, I don’t know how long this or the magnetic lasso would take to add in (so glad its finally there). I just know I had it in Photoshop and need it here.

  48. Adam

    …Wanted to add that I really do love the app and the price is very low. It’s super quick. I just hope the obvious missing features (I saw a request for this one back in 2012) will be taken care of.

  49. Andrius (Pixelmator Team)

    Feedback noted, Adam! We don’t have any concrete plans to add this feature at the moment, but it’s something we do have our eye on for the future.

  50. Anand W

    How can i colour individual alphabets eg. colouring RAINBOW word to 7 colors?

  51. Stephen

    I think there might be something a little wonkie (apoligizes for using such a techical term) with this video. I have been able to play most the other tutorial videos, no problem. This video shows with an overlay that softens the video, yet plays and overlays has the following message, “Blast! The video can not be played with the current setup.”
    MacBook Pro 11,1
    Mac OS 10.12.1
    Safari 10.0.1

  52. Adam

    Still no way to type on a curve? This was easy to do on a Mac in the 90s and can be done on free iPhone apps. Why isn’t it in such Pixelmator yet? It has so many other great features!

  53. donna

    Curved. Text.
    Pretty basic stuff……

  54. BrandyH

    I agree with the comments above. I need to curve text around a shape. Seems very basic. I need it. I otherwise love the program. I would be willing to pay a little more to not be insanely frustrated every time I remember that I can’t curve text. (That’s right, I keep forgetting, and spending 10 minutes trying to figure out how to do it – because why wouldn’t I be able to do something so simple).

  55. Alan Aurmont

    How the hell do I enter specific pixel width for my text box???

    Dragging doesn’t cut it…

  56. CHRIS C

    Guys… Curved text has been a requested feature for nearly 4 years now (based on this thread alone). Not withstanding the fact that this is a very basic feature that shouldn’t be missing; as mentioned above, its also a feature that’s been available on free software for 15+ years.. Are you going to introduce this soon? It’s nearing embarrassing that you don’t have it at this point.

  57. Kunal Bhardwaj

    How to put text behind something in iOS app? Is there any way.

  58. Chloe

    # 46 you mention a very complicated workaround way to curve a text. I have tried it. Whilst I have mastered most of pixelmator’s amazing tools, i can’t get it to come out evenly. Would it be possible please to show a tutorial on how to do this workaround, with explanations on how to get it smooth and round as possible. Thank You!

  59. Lee

    Is there an option to change the color of text shadow like you can the underline and strike through?

  60. Phil

    I cannot fathom the fact that curved text still isn’t available.

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