May 3, 2010 5

The Impact of Vector Graphics

By in Design

I still remember sitting in one of our Mac Apps classes, with the teacher explaining vectorizing, rasterizing and all sorts of other fun stuff. When I say that I remember her teaching us, I mean that I vaguely recall those words being uttered as I fumbled around one of the illustrator programs. Our assignment was to create a vector image of ourselves, using a real life photograph as a template. Although the finished product wasn’t a masterpiece worth bragging about (or sharing with you), it was certainly more impressive than I had thought it would be.

Vector graphics are being used more and more, thanks to the ever-increasing use of the internet as well as an emerging modern style of art and design. These two-dimensional graphics represent images on computers and in web-browsing. Raster graphics represent images as an array of pixels, as would typically be the case with a regular photograph. Vector graphics complement these raster graphics. If the number of pixels doesn’t change, then the graphic becomes pixellated and gets that horrible grainy look we all hate. This is why vector graphics come along to save the day, by storing every line, curve and shape as a mathematical formula. The formula allows vector graphics programs to construct the image so that it’s in proportion to the screen resolution, and the result is a better-quality image.

Adobe Illustrator is one of the more commonly used programs that allows you to create vector graphics. There are lots of resources available for those looking to find or create vector graphics. Online or program tutorials offered by Illustrator or Corel Draw can offer lots of tips and tricks in designing a vector graphic. And for those on-the-go designers, there are a ton of websites offering pages and pages of free, downloadable vector graphics.

The use of vector graphics means a whole new world has opened up for designers. Some designers are able to create vector graphics that look so real, it almost looks like it could be a photograph. This kind of design does take a certain degree of talent.

On the other hand, other designers might say that creating a realistic image is senseless when this kind of design offers so much freedom. Designers are no longer confined to reality or accurate representations. Because these are not photographs, because they are images that are created with nothing but an Illustrator program and a creative mind, the possibilities are endless.

Truly, vector graphics and illustrations have become an art form in themselves, speaking volumes in a way photographs cannot achieve.

This stylized, modern look is becoming quite the trend. Some websites allow users to create their own avatars using these graphics. Southparkstudios.com as well as madmenyourself.com are two examples of sites that allow users to essentially vectorize themselves.

Because of all the creative freedom that vector graphics afford designers, these are mostly used on websites, in branding and designs. I’ve found that one design, an intricate floral illustration, is becoming more and more popular across the board.

I would say that vector graphics may certainly be the future of design and advertising, as the audience seems to be increasingly interested in animation, 3-D movies and avatars that represent themselves. Since vector graphics and illustrations can cover all areas ranging from realism to fantastical imagery, there is no facet of design that will remain untouched by their impact.

About: Ian:
Hi, I'm Ian T. I'm a York grad and a copywriter for Eden Advertising. I'm the master of procrastinating. I like to use parentheses (sometimes). I love the LCBO because wine makes me happy. I don't blog, I capture moments in time.

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5 Responses to “The Impact of Vector Graphics”

  1. I always use Adobe illustrator at work because i work in an animation studio. this is really a serious tool for the graphic artist.`;;

  2. Ensubbisp says:

    Just want to say what a great blog you got here!
    I’ve been around for quite a lot of time, but finally decided to show my appreciation of your work!

    Thumbs up, and keep it going!

    Cheers
    Christian

  3. hey whats your myspace page.

  4. Adobe Illustrator has more features than its competitors ‘

  5. Paige Price says:

    i use adobe illustrator a lot and i really love its great freatures;*`