Need to convert a bitmap to a vector – or simply improve the bitmap image?

This morning I was faced with a challenge. The company has a logo with the word MEMBER underneath it – and I had to get that available on our website – but the problem was the original logo was simply not that high quality…

Having for once caught up with the email mountain, I decided to look and see if my paint packages would turn our bitmap logo plus the text into a vector image which I could then enlarge and doctor –  and of course they would not – so I started looking around the web – and lo – after much wasted time looking at old programs that don’t even work in XP never mind Vista, I found an online convertor called Vector Magic website – you can only do two images for free – but that was ok – I only had one!  – so I gave it a whirl…


To say I’m flabbergasted by the results would be to understate the matter. The site does a WONDERFUL job of converting a bitmap into a vector file –but parts of the original were far from perfect and I could see I was going to need to do some editing – but then that brings me back to square one, except… no.

The site would let you create various formats of the image – PDF, EPS, PNG and SVG…. hold on, what’s an SVG?  Just for the sake of it I downloaded the SVG file and clicked on it, thinking Photoshop might take a look. Instead a program I’d forgotten all about – a freeby called Inkscape popped up – and it’s capable of editing vector images….

See the original image above – full size, that’s a small part of the image to be sure – the lettering FSB. Notice the jagged edges – not only that the some of the imagery was slightly off-square. Not any more.

imageHere’s a similar shot to the one above – same area from the PDF I produced… remember this is starting from a not-very-good BMP file with VERY little effort on my behalf… yes, that’s a tiny part of the bottom right hand corner of the “B” – not only vastly improved but also ACCURATE. I had to make half a dozen corrections two of which were due to problems with the original image – and I now have a master PDF that could scale up to the size of a block  of flats!

So – there you have it. The links will take you to the websites to use the convertor and download Inkscape. This won’t solve EVERYONE’s problems but it solved mine and hopefully if you’re reading this because you’ve a need to blow up an image, it’ll solve yours. If you found this useful, please do leave feedback.


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