7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 1, 2010 12:58 PM by TheMarkness

    raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!

    Chemol Level 1

      Quick question, I have an psd image (photo) that I converted in illustrator to a vector (via Live trace, then Expand, then Merge).  Problem is the file is HUGE now.  Am I missing a step here?  I thought a vector would convert it to a scalable, easy to work with file.


      FYI - the original image is a movie admission ticket in greyscale - 9" x 7" at 300 dpi (in photoshop)


      Please help!

      Thank you ~ Chemol

        • 1. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
          Wade_Zimmerman Level 6

          I just tried this with an image about the size and resolution as yours it was as a psd 7.9 MB and after tracing expanding and  merge  and saved with the merge command applied it was 2.2 MB without Merge command 1.9 MBs


          So perhaps you can tell us in more detail what procedure you followed?

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
            Chemol Level 1

            Hmm - interesting.  May I ask what trace presets did you use for your Live Trace?


            In photoshop my photo is a spot colour (Duotone setting, just used black).  Then I placed it in Illustrator and used Live Trace - Photo High Fidelity, Greyscale, Ignore white...


            Does that help?

            • 3. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
              Wade_Zimmerman Level 6

              It is to complex to use High Fidelity and then expand and then merge.


              I will have to try tomorrow.

              • 5. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
                TheMarkness Level 1

                First - let's not confuse file size with dimension.  Scalable vectors saved in native .ai extension and even .eps extension will be the same file size no matter what the dimension, because of the amount of artwork you have in your board.  More complex settings used in AI's trace feature will cause simple small rasters to become vector"zillas" in this case.  If your raster is flat artwork(simple shapes w/o shading, complex tones or multi-tone artwork)you shouldn't have a problem.  If your raster is like a photo from a camera or photo of anything really, Color 6/16, Photo Lo/Hi Fidelity are going to cause your vector's file size to skyrocket.  I would recommend tracing it by hand using the pen tool - that way you'd get only what you need out of the raster and everything else you can get rid of.


                Hope that helps.


                I just got finished working on converting a raster bumper sticker into a vector logo that will be digitized and embroidered on a school uniform shirt - the complicated part was the logo was of a shield that used a dot patter fade from reflex blue to white, while having white flat shapes of school stuff in it...my file before editing the raster/vector all down to the "used logo" ended up being 5 mb in size...when I was done, the file was 1.3 mb in size - which is still big for a 1.5" patch logo going on a school uniform shirt, so I know your pain.  Some children's people...lol

                1 person found this helpful
                • 6. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
                  Chemol Level 1

                  Right, no confusion here re: file size vs dimensions.  My file went from 4MB psd raster into 48 MB vector - which was where i was baffled.  See noted Live Trace options I selected (in above post).  In this case I wanted to maintain the integrity of the image as it ties in with other pieces being printed - I sent it to the printer as eps (as requested) and think all should be fine ....we'll see.


                  Not a fan of tracing things, although I know a lot of people do it - soooo time consuming.  But I imagine I'll have to break down and do it one day.  Thanks for sharing your patch scenerio - kudos to you for tracing a 1.5" detail - yikes.  I appreciate your help!

                  • 7. Re: raster image (psd) into Vector - huge file!
                    TheMarkness Level 1

                    Yeah, it was tough.  But around where I live people draw things in photoshop(which I really don't use, as Illy can go vector -> raster much more efficiently than shop can go raster -> vector, without your computer running head first into a brick wall to numb the pain), and since most of my work are logos and typography, working in vector is a must.  I've had my fair share of over-the-weekend jobs(the most painstaking was CUDD Pressure Control - Blowouts, Firefighting, Well Control Patch...if you dare look - I had a 2" reflective sticker that I had to scan into Illy and trace with my pen tool, needless to say I'm still wearing my carpel tunnel brace when I play GMod and Half Life Deathmatch<--big gamer here)


                    I learned from Von Glitschka that when it comes to tracing - it's all about patience, and for someone like him, who's a guru IMHO, patience is really the only "tool" we have as designers.