If you’re not completely satisfied with the quality of the converted image generated by vector conversion software, you might find it useful to seek manual vectorization help. Manual vectorization is performed by a skilled graphic designer who will use vector editing software to redraw an image to a vector by hand. In this article, we will discuss why manual vectorization might be the most suitable option for you.

1. Vector Conversion of Small and Blurry Images

Vector conversion of small and blurry images
Vector tracers aren’t great when it comes to the vector conversion of small and blurry images. This is because the smaller the image is, the lower the quality of automated vectorization. The vector tracing software is typically unable to recognize unclear shapes within images, often rendering the generated vector files unusable for print purposes. Unfortunately, more often than not, vector tracing turns out badly. The key to overcoming this issue is to always try to find high-resolution bitmap images for auto-tracing or to let someone manually redraw your image to vector. Graphic designers can work even with small and very pixelated images.

2. Deformed Strokes and Odd Shapes

Deformed strokes and odd shapes at vector conversion
One of the main disadvantages of using automated vector tracing software is that it can create bumpy lines and odd shapes in the vectorized image. This is because automated software is simply not as accurate as a human hand with the intricacy required in vector tracing. Clean and accurate vector files, however, can still be achieved by employing the help of a professional graphic designer. This is made possible through the use of vector editing software, whereby the graphic designer will manually redraw every detail of the image using a pen tool. In a lot of cases, the manually vectorized images can look even better than the original bitmap version.

3. Vector Tracers Can’t Recreate Color Gradients

Vector Tracers can’t Recreate Color Gradients
Color gradients are smooth transitions between colors, meaning that colors naturally blend. However, vectorization tools can only work with solid colors, so you won’t see any smooth color gradients after automated vector conversion, only many harsh blocks of color. By comparison, graphic designers with vector editing software can make use of gradient tools to create smooth and professional transitions between color shades.

4. Vectorizing Sketches

Vectorizing sketches
Sometimes people won’t use graphic design services because they want to design a unique illustration or logo themselves. However, the issue usually arises when it comes to turning it into a digital format. For example, vector converters sometimes don´t pick up on light pencil strokes, or if the photo of the sketch is taken at a bad angle it can cause problems in the vectorization process. Therefore, when it comes to vectorizing sketches, it is often a more worthwhile endeavor to seek the help of a vectorization service that provides manual vectorization. These professionals tend to invest more time and care into the service, so you can be assured that your vectorized sketch will look professional and print-ready.

5. Vectorizing Photos

Vectorizing photos
Another difficulty with using automated vectorization relates to the vectorization of photos. Photos usually include hundreds of different color shades and vector tracers naturally want to trace every single shade. A vectorized image like this often looks messy and can resemble a mosaic. Whereas hand-drawn vectors can simplify the photo as the graphic designer will redraw only the important colors. In this way, the vectorized image looks cleaner and ready to print.

6. Color Separation for Screen-printing

Color Separation for Screen-printing
Another key point to consider is that auto-vectorization is incompatible with the screen-printing process. Screen-printing is a technique, most commonly used in the creation of custom t-shirts, where a design is transferred onto a flat surface using a mesh screen, squeegee, and ink. Screen printers require vector files with separated colors for their work,yet automated vectorization tools don´t offer this option. In this instance, it is best to contact a graphic designer as they can prepare vector files that are compatible with the screen-printing process immediately.

7. Too Many Anchor Points

Too Many Anchor Points Vectorization
The basic unit of vector graphics is a path that creates geometric objects or complex shapes. Every vector path includes anchor points that dictate the direction and curvature of this path, and these can be easily added or removed from the path. However, auto-tracing creates too many unnecessary paths and anchor points which causes difficulties for the cutting software. When it comes to manually vectorizing images, graphic designers only include the necessary lines and anchor points. This prevents any issues arising during vinyl/plotter cutting, laser cutting, or engraving.

8. Editing of vector file

Editing of vector file order online
When it comes to editing a vector file, it is important to keep in mind that a vector tracer will only generate just a vector file for you. This means that there is no option to change the design, colors, or add text. On the contrary, a graphic designer can customize your vector image according to your needs and can offer revisions. We would recommend vectorization services that focus on the vector conversion as you can receive a quality, edited vector file within a few hours.

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