Does Photoshop do vector work very well? (Logo design)
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    Does Photoshop do vector work very well? (Logo design)

    I was asked by a friend to design a logo for his business, and I want to do it well and the correct way. I don't have much experience using vectors, and the only software at my disposal is Photoshop. Can I get by this time around by just using PS?

    Thanks for any help.

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    ...Kinda. Photoshop can make vector paths (and is better at it than illustrator by ONE tiny difference, in my opinion)...only to rasterize them immediately afterward.

    I'm pretty sure there's a way to transfer the paths into Illustrator. Heck, Illustrator can actually try to convert Photoshop stuff into vector, with varied results depending on the source file it's working from. (You'd better be familiar with vectors before doing that, because you have to know what vectors can and CAN'T do in order to have the conversion work right.)

    But for an actual vector, there's a reason Illustrator is a separate program.

    Last edited by Psychotime; January 27th, 2013 at 12:01 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psychotime View Post
    I'm pretty sure there's a way to transfer the paths into Illustrator.
    file > export > paths illustrator.

    im pretty sure ps is capable of doing that on its own, like eps, and pdf and whatnot, but im not aware of any not-to-miss routine right now. last time i did vector been before the millenium (with ps 4.1 or something). i know it can do it, but i cant tell you how.

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    Photoshop's vector support is terrible, but you may be able to get by with it depending on the actual design you are thinking about.

    In particular, Photoshop can't really do lines in vector, only shapes. For example, the vector line tool actually just creates a very skinny rectangle.

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    you could just make it a very high dpi

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    Maybe I phrased my question incorrectly. Or, maybe I was wrong in assuming this needs to be done in vector language at all.

    Basically, I just need to end up with a file that they can resize (bigger or smaller), when they need to, without losing the quality. Am I okay working in Photoshop this way? Maybe it doesn't matter how I go about creating the image; maybe it only depends on how I export the final product.

    "you could just make it a very high dpi" < Perhaps that's the answer?

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    Also, I should add that using Illustrator isn't an option for me right now; I can't justify buying the program for this one small project.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Syle View Post
    "you could just make it a very high dpi" < Perhaps that's the answer?
    Yeah, go ahead. It'll never be infinite, but if you've got something reasonably sized, you're good or it.

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    Not so much make it high DPI as just make it really, really big in terms of how many pixels it is...

    If it's huge, they can always scale it down. They won't be able to scale it up gracefully, but if it's big enough they shouldn't need to (unless they need to stick it on a truck or a billboard... But if they're doing a corporate ID job of that scale, they would have a budget to match and you'd be able to get Illustrator.) Also make sure you have a transparent background, of course.

    Another option, you could license Illustrator temporarily for a month via Adobe's "Creative Cloud" option. But you'd need to learn Illustrator well enough to do the job, which might not be feasible for the short term.

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    Inkscape is a free vector based software program that can do just about everything illustrator does.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Psychotime View Post
    ...Kinda. Photoshop can make vector paths (and is better at it than illustrator by ONE tiny difference, in my opinion)...only to rasterize them immediately afterward.
    Um, no. It saves vector layers as vectors in the file, they remain editable.

    Photoshop's vector support isn't full of bells and whistles, but it certainly is workable.

    But for an actual vector, there's a reason Illustrator is a separate program.
    Yes, there is. Early Photoshop versions did not support any vector stuff, so Illustrator was a separate program. Now it still is because it evolved into a different tool set which many people are used to.

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    Try http://www.serif.com/free-graphic-design-software/. It won't have all the bells & whistles of the full program, but enough to make a logo.


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    The raster-to-vector converter built into Macromedia Flash was the best! It's funny how something really useful can be tucked into an unlikely tool. I miss Flash

    For what it's worth, the CS2 version of the Creative Suite is still available for free download. I snagged Illustrator and InDesign and they're working for me. They're even showing up as registered to me in my Adobe account. (Angsty thread about it here).

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    If this is for commercial use, I can tell you from experience that the advertisement agnesies will most likely be extremely grateful if you could make it in illustrator.
    Vector files are more scalable, and I think the Photoshop eps files are bitmaps (might remember wrong there). If you make it in Photoshop you have to make it insanely huge in case the customer wants it to be seen from space one day, and that's just messy in my opinion.
    Vectors in illustrator are nicer.
    Or any other vector based programs. Photoshop just isn't perfect for vectors.

    Last edited by Lady Medusa; January 27th, 2013 at 08:07 AM.
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    Thanks for the replies everyone. I'll try out that free vector program first, see where it takes me. Then, fall back on Photoshop as a last resort.

    FWIW, I think this company is only using it for letterheads and their website. They may be printing it on the side of their travelling vehicles as well.

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    EDIT: double post.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Syle View Post
    Thanks for the replies everyone. I'll try out that free vector program first, see where it takes me. Then, fall back on Photoshop as a last resort.

    FWIW, I think this company is only using it for letterheads and their website. They may be printing it on the side of their travelling vehicles as well.
    If its going to go on the side of a vehicle, then it should definitely be done in a nice vector quality. Either that or you have to make it monstrously ginormous..

    One fundamental rule of thumb if you do end up having to make it in photoshop (and it doesn't give you nice scalable vectors):
    Always make it a little bigger than the biggest size you think it will be used in. There is always some asshole that wants it bigger than it should be.
    Remember, you can only scale bitmaps down, and not up, because that looks hideous, and will make you feel horrendously ashamed should you see something you made look like that.

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    I made a tutorial about vectors in photoshop. When we did icons for games or stuff like that, we used mostly shapes. That way we can resize everything for new platforms.


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    I just wanted to follow up this thread and post the logo that I made with your guys'/gals' help. Thanks again!Name:  FIRES-emblem-rasterized-RBG.png
Views: 153
Size:  247.5 KB

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