You are probably more familiar with .jpg images, like those you would get from your digital camera. If you ever try to zoom in very close, you will notice that the image becomes blurry and the colors turn into little squares or dots. But this kind of thing will never happen to vector images. So what is a vector image and what are the characteristics?
Vector Image Definition and Characteristics
1. Vector and Raster Image
In the world of graphic design, Vector images are usually differentiated with raster images. The main difference between the two is the element that comprised both image. Raster image is a pixel based image. This cause raster images to be resolution dependent, and turned blurry when they are scaled up.
On the other hand, vector graphic is an graphic that results from a combination of points and lines with mathematical formulas, thus forming a polygon depicting a particular image object. The location of a vector image is called control points or nodes, where the location of each point has a definite position based on the x and y axis. In a vector art, each line or point can be added with various attributes, such as shape, lines curves, thickness, color, and fill color.
This characteristic of vector image makes it perfect for many occasion. It is suitable for illustrations that will be printed on a big banner, for example. It is also suitable for your business needs, since it is really is to be adjusted for many platforms.
2. Vector File Formats
The format of vector graphic is called vector files. There are many kinds of vector files, and sometimes it depends on the software that you use, such as:
- CDR (format from Corel Draw)
- AI (format from Adobe Illustration)
Read also: Changing Color of Image in Illustrator
3. Characteristics of Vector Images
By using these characteristics below, you can identify a vector graphic easily. The characteristics of vector graphics are:
- Vector images are formed from a combination of individual objects consisting of points, lines and colors.
- Image size does not affect the quality of the displayed image, because it does not depend on image resolution.
- Has a relatively small size for the image file
- It is scalable so it won’t break when the image is enlarged
- The resulting image display is less real and natural, so it cannot be used to produce realistic photo images.
- When displayed to the monitor screen requires a longer process.
4. Pros of Vector Images
Vector images can have some advantages than other image format, such as:
- The storage space used by drawing objects is more efficient.
- Can be printed at high resolution using a printer.
- Images can be resized to any size without fear of deterioration.
- Vector images are easier to edit.
5. Disadvantages of Vector Graphics
Although vector graphics appear to have many advantages, this file format is not necessarily perfect. This type of format can also have disadvantages. One example is that If the image is converted to a bitmap, it cannot generate the main vector any more and loses all of its vector characteristics.
Types of Vector Based Software
- Zoner Draw
- Canvas 8
- Adobe Illustrator
- Xara X1
- Creature House Expression
When to Use Vector Art?
In the world of graphic design, vector graphics are a big part in most printed or published materials, such as logo. Logos should always have a vector format so those smooth lines and shapes produce the best quality for printed materials. You can use your vector logo blown up on a huge billboard or made smaller for small accessories by using vector format.
Those are the things you should know about vector graphics. Vector graphics are often compared to raster graphics. As a type of graphic, vector graphics have advantages in the form of resolution. There are many software that you can use to process vector image files and each software also has different vector formats.
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If you have any questions about this, don’t be shy to leave a comment!