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What is a Vector Image: Everything You Need to Know

What is a Vector Image: Everything You Need to Know

What is a vector image? In this article, you will learn in depth what vector graphics are, what software to use in order to work with vector files and why they are so popular.

What are vector images/files?

Vector images are like a map. The vector file stores mathematical data for the image. Imagine that you have points with specific coordinates on the artwork. Lines are just connected dots on this map.

What software to use?

This depends on your work preferences. They are different programs that work with vector images. These are some of the most popular vector-based software:

  • Adobe Illustrator

If you are not familiar with any of them but you are working with other Adobe products, we would recommend giving Adobe Illustrator a try. Their products work well with each other when you need to transfer files from one software to another. Also, you will get familiar with the program faster because the interface of all their products is similar. Adobe Illustrator is the most favorite software of vector designers.

  • Corel Draw

Works great with vector formats. This software is the most popular for print designs. It works great with printing hardware.

  • Affinity Designer

This software is very new but the users who have tried it are loving it. Its biggest advantage is that it can work great with both raster and vector images.

  • Inkscape

What makes this software so popular is that it is free to use. Unfortunately, you may experience issues with some file formats.


Why are vector images so popular?

Vector graphics are mostly used for web, for print, logo design and designs that need to be high-quality. But why?

Vector images can be scaled as much as you need without experiencing any difference in the images’ quality (like raster files would). Let’s see an example:

You make a logo in raster software with a resolution 800x1000px. A year later your client tells you that they need to make a billboard with this logo. Unfortunately, the result will be very bad. The logo would be blurred or pixelized and your client will certainly not be happy with the result. But if you’ve made your logo in vector software, it could be scaled up as much as you need, and it will have the same crystal clear good look.

So, if you are making icons for the web, logo, illustration for a t-shirt, a billboard design, a book cover, etc, we would recommend that you use vector software for these purposes.