Stock Pictures of Vector Artwork
To start, there are two categories of graphics you should know about: vector graphics and raster (or bitmap) graphics. Of these types, the most versatile and flexible one tends to be vector artwork, and its related formats (commonly known within Adobe creative software).
Vector graphics use mathematical equations to draw out your designs. These mathematical equations are translated into points that are connected by either lines or curves, also known as vector paths, and they make up all the different shapes you see in a vector graphic. This allows vector graphics to be scaled to any size without losing image quality as well as maintain a small file size. No matter how large or small or how close you zoom in on the image, the lines, curves, and points remain perfect. There will never be jagged lines or blurriness with this kind of image, no matter how much it is enlarged. Also, colors are separated into any type/size of shape, which makes changing colors within these graphics as easy as the click of a button.
Raster graphics (jpg or Jpeg / png / tiff files)
Most people are familiar with .jpg .png .tiff images, like those you would get from your digital camera or cellphone, but if you have ever zoomed in very close or tried to blow-up an image to a size too large, you’ll notice that the image becomes blurry and the colors turn into little squares or dots (pixelated). The little dots are called pixels and this kind of image is called a raster graphic. If you have ever had to edit a digital photo you know how time-consuming changing just the smallest thing can be. The detail within raster graphics tends to be richer than vectors, but limited to about 10% enlargement without visible pixelations or distortions.
Raster graphic editors are optimal for digital photograph editing because raster graphics are able to portray better color depth. Each pixel can be any one of the 16 million different colors available in the color spectrum. However, if you’re not working with digital photographs, vector graphic editing software would be your best bet for all other types of design editing, especially because vector graphics are able to be scaled and manipulated at any size with clarity. Think of their use commercially from a website logo to a billboard – no loss and no change.
The difference between vectors and raster images
Back to Vector Images
So now that you know what a vector graphic is, you need to know why it’s important. In the world of graphic design, vector graphics are a big part of most printed or published materials. Logos, for example, should always have a vector format. Those smooth lines and shapes produce the perfect quality printed materials, having a solid, consistent color and crisp, clear text. You can use your vector logo blown up huge on a billboard and it won’t lose any quality. Icons and more illustrated looking artwork are also good to have in vector files because of this flexibility.
For the everyday user, vector graphics are something you will rarely use if you don’t have the software to open them (such as Adobe or Corel products). While you may not ever personally use these files or even have the programs to open them, it is very important NOT to delete your vector image files. If you ever plan on having graphic design work done or want your logo placed on promotional items, you will be asked for vector graphics files. Keep these files, and maybe even take up a tutorial to learn how to open and use them.
Types of imagery and stock photography, based on Vector Artwork you can find above:
- Stock Pictures / Pics
- Royalty-free Vectors
- Illustrations / Cartoons
- Wallpapers / Backgrounds
- Abstract Patterns
- Isolated / Green Screens