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Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

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Old March 19th, 2020 Mar 19, 2020 1:12:07 PM -   #1 (permalink)
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Question Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

Hi guys,

I'm having issues with customers giving me logos and designs for vinyl printing saved as a jpeg file.

Is there a quick or easy way to save as much detail without altering the design too much (or just a better way to work!!) as using online vector software makes the letters wonky and out of shape.

Much appreciated.
 
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Old March 19th, 2020 Mar 19, 2020 5:15:14 PM -   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

You need to be strict with your customers or you'll have no end of troubles.


Tell them you'll only accept bitmap designs in a native resolution of at least 300 dpi. Add on an extra charge for any designs you have to vectorise yourself. Or, to make things even easier for yourself, tell them you'll only accept vector files, of type svg, eps, ai, etc.
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Old March 19th, 2020 Mar 19, 2020 8:31:20 PM -   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

like webtrekker said, this can turn into a constant thorn in your side
best to lay out some ground rules for art-submissions
 
 
Old April 10th, 2020 Apr 10, 2020 5:48:33 AM -   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

As much as having artwork submission guidelines might help people get you the files that you need, you're still going to get junk files to work with. The best thing to do is learn how to use your vector drawing tools in whatever software you're using. This is pretty much a required thing to know if you're in this industry. There is no "quick & easy way" to get a detailed image from a crappy jpeg other than using a service or doing it yourself. Becoming reliant on using outside services all the time might find you in a situation where cost or turnaround time might be an issue, so knowing how to do it yourself can save you in a last minute situation. I'm not saying you have to be a top level vector illustrator, but knowing how to use the tools and being able to recreate simple to intermediate images and text will be an extremely useful skill set to have. I do most of the vectorization I need in house, but I will send out jobs to Vector Doctor if I'm swamped and need a quicker turnaround than I can do myself. Another thing to consider with being able to do that in house is, whatever you bill the customer for the art recreation only has your overhead labor cost attached to it, not an out-of-pocket expense that you may or may not be able to upcharge on.
 
Old April 12th, 2020 Apr 12, 2020 7:25:43 AM -   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

There is a lot you can do with a pixelated image in order to get a better vector trace from it. I put this video on YouTube a couple of years ago to show I how often do it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZ98jVb0M9o

A redraw is most often the ideal solution but that can be too time-consuming for a small order.
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Old April 12th, 2020 Apr 12, 2020 2:25:29 PM -   #6 (permalink)
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If you really must use low-res, pixellated images then try blurring the edges slightly (Photoshop, Gaussian Blur effect) before vectorising.
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Old April 13th, 2020 Apr 13, 2020 6:28:34 AM -   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Turn a pixelated JPEG to a ready to cut plotter design.

I have some success with CorelDraw17 auto trace, as long as there is only one or two colors, and lots of contrast.
a little clean up with adjusting nodes often is faster than trying to recreate a logo or design.
If you have too many colors, fades, gradients could be more trouble in tracing than the time is worth.
Ask for clean AI, EPS, or some other vector file, usually whoever created the image can convert it to a vector file.
hope this helps.
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