Thread: bitmap to vector conversion
What's available either free or what you pay for doesn't alter the fact that the original bitmap needs to be of a suitable quality to start with, there are ways to get a better vector copy of any bitmap but like most things in life it takes a bit of practice. Software I use does a pretty good job of auto tracing but like any package the default settings sometimes need to be altered to get the best results, that can only be done by learning how to use the program properly & can still require a certain amount of node editing if your looking for perfect results. Regardless of what software you end up using I am afraid that if you want to be able to do this on a regular basis you are going to have to learn to edit vectors properly, does take a bit of time but once you have the hang of it you would be surprised just how quick you can produce usable results.
Don't forget that if you are running a business then the customer should be paying for your time spent doing any kind of design work which includes editing artwork that is not supplied ready to cut. If your lifting Logos from logo websites don't forget that this doesn't give you the right to use them for any commercial gain & you still risk being chased by the Copyright holder, some companies protect their copyright more than others & I have individuals taken to court for selling copyright material. End of the day you pays your money you take your chance.
thanks for your comments. I was beginning to suspect that most or all of the conversion software needs some work to obtain unbroken geometries. the method I have used to date is to trace manually and then stick the tracing paper on the screen and follow the lines, clicking about every 2-3mm. I then use splines to smooth out the trace. I realize that this is time consuming, but still much better than anything I have done with the auto trace in serif. The logos i use are not other peoples logos, are drawn specifically for a friend, obviously not in a vector format. copyright does not come into it, but thanks for the warning.
Wow, literal tracing , reminds me of this:
There was a nice demo of Inkscape and F-Engrave from a logo on here, but it was so nice the O.P. wanted th epictures removed once realised it was actually easily doable.
be honestly suprised if manually tracing with a mouse can do better than any of the freeware tracing options out there.
The Following User Says Thank You to Musht For This Useful Post:
Take a bit of time to learn how to node edit, can be a bit frustrating at times but worth the effort in the long run. Another option for you if you have to trace the logo anyway might be a tablet, wacom do a range of tablets & the prices vary enormously but I have heard that some find the wacom bamboo to be a usable tablet & it's reasonably priced. Another option would be to design the logos in a vector format to start with, it makes sense to me as a signmaker as it's just so much easier to start with. Anything done in vector is instantly re-scaelable to any size without loss of resolution, no horrible pixalation to try & sort out either lol. Another advantage I find is that it is much easier to produce a single colour logo for invoices which a lot of people prefer as printing is then cheaper.
As for copyright, well it still applies as copyright is held by the designer but in this case you have permission to use it. What is covered & what's not is actually a bit of a minefield & a lot of people don't realise they are doing anything wrong which is why I mentioned it. I use a few different sign forums so have read quite a bit about it over the years.
The Following User Says Thank You to martin54 For This Useful Post:
when I need to convert a bitmap I usually do it manually with a little trick:
- First the picture is opened and scaled to fill almost the entire screen...
- Then I start my CAD program and make its window half transparent (using a free program called "Glass2k")
- This way I can see the bitmap through the CAD program window and easily trace it manually with lines, arcs and splines...
The output of most bitmap to vector conversion programs is basically unusable for CAM programs (due to gaps / overlapping lines etc.).
Only if the bitmap resolution is high, uses no color shades and all edges are sharp some programs are able to create reasonable results - but I've never seen e.g. a scanned drawing turned back into a usable .dxf file without doing a lot of rework first...
Thanks Christian, that sounds a clever program, basically a more streamlined version of my tracing paper method. I'll give that a try. G
Hi Martin, sorry for the delay in acknowledging your post. Yes I do mean open geometries, but also some lines were coming up double and in anyway the trace was very poor and the tracing method gave me the best result although long winded. I have asked the chap who commissions the logos to gat them done in vector format, but the "artist" does not have that facility at present.
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