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Images for Large Format Printing

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We get a lot of requests to convert photos to vector format. One of the reasons is that some printer's guidelines state that in order to print good quality images in large format, such as signs and banners or vehicle wraps, high resolution or scalable vector graphics are required.


Maybe a little clarification is needed because vector graphics are drawings, so converting a photo to vector means making a drawing of the photo and that isn't necessarily what is needed or wanted.

If the images you want printed in large format are:


A. Photos Images that are captured with a camera need to be supplied inhigh resolution(large image*) format. Photos are not scalable so simply enlarging a small image will result in a poor quality large image. The photo must have been taken with a high quality setting on the camera, so that it will be the size needed for the project, or larger. Your printer should be able to tell you the pixel dimension (photo size) needed for the specific project. Photo to…

Lost your image file? No problem!

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If you do not have a digital file of your graphic but you have access to an item with the graphic printed on, embroidered on, tattooed on, or otherwise visible on an item, we may be able to reproduce your image in multiple formats including vector AI, CDR, EPS, SVG and more.

Take a photo of the item with the graphic on it and email it to us. A scan of the item would work much better because there won't be any distortion* but we can also work with a photo as a last resort.





*Distortion Problems
When using a photograph of a graphic as a reference, rather than a flat scan, the photographs will show the graphic in perspective (distorted). We will have to guess as to how the artwork might have looked originally.



If at all possible, a flat scan of the product with the graphic on it will work best.



If a scan is not available, we can still try to correct any distortion but the new graphic we create will most likely not be identical to your original file if we do not have the original to com…

Raster vs Vector

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There are two main type of image files: Raster and Vector. Raster images are created with pixel-based programs or captured with a camera or scanner. They are more common in general such as jpg, gif, png, and are widely used on the web. Vector graphics are created with vector software and are common for images that will be applied onto a physical product. Also used in CAD, engineering, and 3D graphics.


When using a raster program you paint an image and it's similar to dipping a brush in paint and painting. You can blend colors to soften the transition from one color to another.

When using a vector program you draw the outline of shapes: and it's similar to creating an image with tiles of all different shapes and sizes. e.g. an eye shape, a nose shape, a lip shape. These shapes called objects display one single color each.

A lot of images can be made with either raster or vector program and look exactly the same on both programs. Images with a subtle gradation of one color to an…

Vector for Engraving

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A lot of our vector drawings are for engravers who tell us they will use the vector file for relief engraving, laser engraving, sandblasting, etching, or cutting. I am guessing these are some of the few process left that require vector art. Although I have never actually used an engraving machine or tool, I have been preparing vector graphics since 2000 for many different purposes including engraving and sign cutting. Below is a recent engraving project The image engraved on this stone needs to be reproduced in vector format
This is the vector drawing as per Engraver specifications
Engraver work in progress
Final engraved product
See the project from beginning to end, including errors and corrections that needed to be done before the vector drawing was appropriate for the particular process: http://vector-conversions.com/engraving.html