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I am trying to make a text that is slightly rounded on the front face (but still has angles), such as this:

enter image description here

All the other faces would be non-rounded. It is not beveled, as it's more like the front fade is curved/bumpy.

This is what the letters I get look like (side cut):

enter image description here

and this is what I would like them to look like (side cut):

enter image description here

I've tried many techniques, such as bevel, sub surf, remeshing, and even exporting outline curves and one inline curve for each character from Illustrator and joining them, but I can't seem to find an easy way to do this.

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By tweaking both the Bevel Depth and Modification Offset you should be able to achieve quite good results:

enter image description here

Start by increasing the depth: the font will increse its outline while creating the curved. Then use a negative offset value to compensate this growth and to make the flat face as small as possible. the You should also ensure that the beveling resolution is high enough in order to achieve the wanted smooth surface.

Then you could convert the text object to a mesh. This way you'll have more control upon the shading of the sharp edges. I marked them manually in the following example:

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ It seems not working for the given case. Try "esper". $\endgroup$ – Leon Cheung Jun 15 '16 at 2:28
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    $\begingroup$ Here's a try with the given example @LeonCheung: i.stack.imgur.com/UrEs6.png. Surely this kind of approach creates some modeling issues (e.g. intersecting faces, it depends on the font) that should be fixed, but I think it provides a "starting point" good enough for being considered. $\endgroup$ – Carlo Jun 15 '16 at 16:55
  • $\begingroup$ Of course this is a quick and dirty way. :) I don't think we got other better idea than just retopo it. $\endgroup$ – Leon Cheung Jun 15 '16 at 23:25

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