Turn Image Into Vector Illustrator | How To Convert An Image To Vector In Illustrator With Image Trace

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How To Convert An Image To Vector In Illustrator With Image Trace


Hi, everyone, this is Anne with Graphic Design. How To and today I’m going to tell you how to convert a JPEG or a PNG file to a vector image using Image Trace in Adobe Illustrator. Alright, let’s get started, OK? Here We are in Illustrator, and I’m just going to go to Create New. I’m going to come over here to the Print presets and choose Letter. It doesn’t really matter what you choose. You can always change it later. So we’ll come down here and hit Create. And now I’m going to place the files that we’ll work with today. So we’ll go to File>Place. I’m going to grab all five of my images that I’ll be working with today and place them. Now I’m going to click and drag to place them in my file. I found all these images online just through Google search And I will say that most Google Search images are protected. So you cannot use them in your own work, but it’s totally fine to practice with them. So I’m just clicking and dragging to place all of these images in. Now all of these files are either JPEGs or PNG files, which are raster images And we’ll be changing them to Illustrator files, which are vector images. And one of the big benefits to having vector images is that you can resize them to any size and they don’t lose quality because they’re made up of mathematical equations sort of. So when you’re doing this, you want really high res versions of the images. This one, I chose specifically because it’s a low re’s version. And you can tell it’s pretty blurry here. You can still read the small type, but it’s pretty blurry. All the other images are pretty high res, And I think we’ll be fine with them. But I wanted to show you an example of what happens when you use a low re’s image. OK, so I’m going to hide all of the images that we’re not going to be working with it first (CMD 3 to hide those), and I’ll click and drag this one up, so we can see what’s going on with it. Now this is just a black and white image or black and very light gray. It has a lot, of contrast. To turn this image into a vector, you’ll click on it and then you can come right up here to Image Trace. If you don’t have this bar, you can go to Window and Control and make sure it’s checked And it should show up right up here at the top. So we have this Image Trace button. Now the thing about this button is it will always default to black and white settings. So when I click it, it’s perfect for this because this is a black and white image pretty much. So when I zoom in with my Z Tool, I can see it did a pretty good job of tracing what it saw, but we can make changes to this to make it even better. So to do that, come up here to this little shortcut. This will lead you to the Image Trace panel. Another way to get to this panel is to go to Window>Image Trace, and now we have a lot of different options. Up here at the top, we have little presets. We’ve got an Auto-Color. We’ve got High Color, Low Color, Grayscale, Black and White and Outline, And there are even more under here under the Preset button. There are a couple of photo settings. If you want to constrain the tracing to three colors or six colors or 16 you can do that here You can do. Shades of Gray, a Black and White Logo, a sketch And you can go through these one by one to see how they look with your image. For the View, I usually leave it at Tracing Result, but you can also choose some of these others like Tracing Result with Outlines. Which shows you the paths that it’s going to make. The Outlines view shows you only the paths with no fills Outlines with your Source Image and Source Image only. So this all depends on how you’d like to see your image. I like Tracing Result. Our Mode is Black and White, And I’ll leave this the same for this image, and then we get down here into some of the options. First we have Threshold Threshold kind of will see what’s black and what isn’t and decrease or increase the amount of black that’s given in your black and white result So. If we want less black, we can come down here to Less And you can see it kind of reduced the black around the edges. And if we want more, we can come all the way up here and get a lot of blackno’t looking very good. I want to move this as far as I can up here because I like a lot of black in my images, but without that kind of crazy result. Some of you when you see this panel will see this. So just click the caret next to Advanced to see the rest of the options. We’ve got Paths here. And if you change this, a higher path number will result in having something a little closer to your original artwork, but it’ll have fewer sharp edges and more paths. So a higher value means kind of a tighter fit to your original image. And a lot of times when I mess with paths. I don’t see a lot of difference. So you can just play around with that and see how well it works for your image. Corners changing. This will change. How often a sharp turn will turn into a corner? So if you go up, you’re going to get more corners, And if you go down, you’ll get less corners. And a lot of times this too does not change a lot. Here we have Noise and Noise will ignore areas of a specific pixel size. So the higher value means less noise. So let’s put it up there. A good rule of thumb is. If you have a low re’s image, you’ll want low noise. If you have a high re’s image, you’ll want high noise. Our image is really high res, So I’ll put it up with the high noise. And then your Method is how this image is going to cut out the paths. We’ve got two options: Abutting and Overlapping. So this is talking about the white areas and the black areas So? If you choose this other option, which is Overlapping, the white areas will overlap the black. And you won’t really be able to tell until you move them. But I always leave this at Abutting, which sort of cuts everything out like puzzle pieces. As far as creating fills or strokes, I have never had very good luck with trying to create strokes. Even though an image like this, you would think would be perfect for that. This is what happens. So I always just leave. Fills and I uncheck Strokes And then with the Options with Snap Curves to Lines. I always uncheck it. Recheck it and see how well it matches up with my image. With this image, it’s about the same, And then finally we’ve got Ignore White. This will get rid of all the white you see, and you’ll just have black outlines. I don’t want to do this on this image. Because when we expand this, I want to be able to change the colors. So I’m going to leave that unchecked. And now all we have to do is Expand And now when we hit Cmd Y we can see, we have a ton of little points and paths all through here that Illustrator created from this artwork. I’m going to hit CMD Y again And this is just back to our normal view. Now I’m going to hit my A Tool and select the white out here and delete it. And now I’ve got these white pieces that I can click on with my A Tool and color. So if I come down here to my fill and double click, and we choose a red color and I say, OK, This actually will change it to gray. And this happens a lot with image tracing results. It actually takes your entire image and changes it to grayscale. So I’m going to undo. I’m going to use my Group Selection Tool to click on the edge of a black piece And then go to Select>Same>Fill Color. And now we have all of the black in the image. I’ll come up here to Color and go to RGB. And now I’ll do the same with the white. I’ll select it. I’ll go to Select>Same>Fill Color And we’ll also change that to RGB. Now you would think you could do this all at once. But for some reason, it was changing my entire graphic to white. I had to do them individually. But anyway, I’m going to change all of these pieces to red now, And we’ve got this in here and we do not want that. So I’m going to just click in here and delete both of those, and I’ll use my Group Selection Tool to choose all of the leaf colors and change those to green, And this type of recoloring will only work if the areas are completely enclosed, so the stem cannot be colored this way. We would have to make some changes to color that stem correctly. So I’m just going to go ahead and do that. I’m going to click right on the edge of this. I’m going to copy it and then paste in front. I want the stem to be its own piece. So I’m going to start right here with my Pencil Tool. Come around here and then end up going that same way on the inside. So now I’ve just made a fill and then I’ll use my Eyedropper Tool by hitting I and clicking on the green. So all I really did was just make a shape using the shape that already existed if that makes sense. So that’s how you can use a black and white image and recolor it. Now I’m going to unhide with OPT Cmd 3 or Alt Ctrl 3 on a PC. Now we’ll work on this image. I’ll click on it. And now all my Image Trace options are available. And this time, we’ll use the Preset>High Fidelity Photo. Depending on your computer, this could take a moment because it is going to make a whole lot of paths. And it looks like it did a really great job. But when we get really close up, you can see all the tons of different colors and paths that Illustrator has created. So I don’t really need to mess with any of these other options. It looks great to me. Now I can just Expand and look at all those points. So that’s one issue with using high res photos and creating vectors out them. They do cause some pretty big files, which can slow your system down. Anyway, that’s all. We need to know about that one. Next we have this little fox guy. He actually started out as a vector and was saved, probably as a PNG or JPEG file. This time I’m going to use a different Preset. We’ll try 16 colors and it is nearly perfect. OK, now we’ll expand. I’m going to hit Cmd. E, which is the same thing as going to Expand here. I’ll say, OK, I’ll hit my A Tool and click the green and just delete it. Sometimes when you do an Image Trace, it leaves some paths around the edge. I’m going to grab my G. Tool, which is my Group Selection Tool. Draw a box around that area and just delete it. Now when I hit Cmd Y we can see if there’s any other points and stuff up there, and there’s not Alright. Here’s my little fox. If we get really close and zoom in, we can see, he’s got a little bit of an issue right here. But Image Trace really did a great job with him. This would be perfect. If your client only had this image, they owned it and they wanted to change the background color or something like this or put it on a billboard. Next we have a logo and some text. I’m just going to do the regular black and white Image Trace on this, And it looks pretty good. I’m going to come down here and do Ignore White because I don’t want any of the white to be part of the image And then we’ll Expand that. All right, When tracing text, a lot of times Illustrator doesn’t do the best job in making it very smooth. So you can always use your G Tool (Group Selection) to come in here, click on the edge and then hit N, which is your Pencil Tool and hold OPT and just go over those paths and smooth them out a little bit. But it really does do a pretty good job if you have a high re’s image. Maybe we don’t want the crown anymore. So I’ll use my Group Selection Tool to just draw a box around that and delete it, And then finally, sometimes a client will give you their logo and they’ve managed to lose the original files And all they have is a low res logo. And you think, Oh, I can just use Image Trace to make this a vector. Well, it’s not quite that easy. So when you’re tracing a low re’s logo, you’re going to run into some problems. So let’s first start off with a Preset of 3 colors. And you can see what it does. It just doesn’t know very well. What parts are what color? It’s not great And no matter how big this gets, It’s still going to be blurry and Image Trace is not going to be able to work with it. So unfortunately, you’re going to have to redraw this with the Pen Tool. In my first graphics job, I fixed so many logos like this. It’s just a matter of tracing everything with the Pen Tool, finding the fonts if you can or drawing them by hand. So Image Trace cannot do everything. All right, that’s my video for this week. If you liked it and would like to see more videos like this. I put one out every Thursday. So just hit the Subscribe button and you’ll get a notification. All right, I’ll see you next week with another graphic design tutorial. Thank you!