(3) Is there any way of making the various sides of extruded text different colors? For example, the face of your text white while having the perimeter a red color?
Use the same method described by Kingston in his post above. You select the side(s) you want to change the color or texture. A big part of this is having a Bevel
. By default there is no bevel applied. Go to the Attribute Panel
and from the drop-down menu select Bevel, and then choose one of the bevel templates. I would say for the type of effect you're after, using a Chiseled-Round or Round-Chiseled would work.