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  • Bitmap Vs. Vector ... What's the difference?

    Bitmap Vs. Vector for Banner Design

    I know that sentence sounds like some sort of snappy new video game title or words from some kind goofy moon language, but these are actually two completely different image file types that can make or break your banner. In today's blog post you will learn the difference between the 2 formats, and hopefully gain enough information to assist you in the future when choosing which one to use for printing. Here's the same image at the same size, the one on the left is a Bitmap image, the one on the left is a Vector image. Bitmap v. Vector Both look the same, right? Plus you watch alot of TV! A magical world where any time anybody on any TV show needs a picture blown up, they just mash the keyboard until the computer scales the image perfectly (before creating a rotating 3D wireframe), right!? Wrong! TV is fake, computers can't do that, and Santa doesn't exist. Here's the same 2 logos blown up at 400%... ... The Vector logo on the right looks crisp and clean, whereas the Bitmap image on the left looks kind of sad and pathetic. How did this happen, why does one look clearer than the other, and what's the difference between the 2 formats? I'll tell you. Bitmap images (JPEG, GIF, TIFF, PNG) are comprised of a series of hundreds of thousands of tiny little colored dots (or pixels, as they're referred to in the nerd community). The quality of a Bitmap image hinges on how many dots fill a square inch, also known as DPI (Dots Per Inch). The higher the DPI, the more dots per square inch, the better the image quality. Bitmap images can generally only be scaled down and still maintain image clarity. The only time they can be enlarged is if the native file has a relatively high DPI, but it comes at a cost. Enlarging the image lowers the DPI during the scaling process, which severely limits the scaling abilities of Bitmap files. After a certain point, a Bitmap image will start to look like a crappy old video game because it will run out of pixels to compensate for the change in size. Vector images (AI, CDR, PDF) are comprised of a series of lines and algorithms that calculate the colors and shapes used in the image and how to scale it properly. This means that you can shrink and expand a vector file to any size you can think of and it will still look the same every time. Vector files allow a Designer or yourself to apply your art more easily to various projects because in addition to having no real size constraints, every little element be it a specific line or color, can be manipulated individually without affecting the image as a whole. Does this mean that one file type is better than the other? It really depends on what kind of project they will be used for. Vector images are ideal for Logos and Artwork that will be applied to various different mediums. A perfect example of this would be a Business that needs to use the same corporate logo for business cards, letter heads, envelopes, advertisements, emails, billboards, and signs. A Vector image would allow them to scale their logo to fit every single one of those uses and while still looking exactly the same every time. A Bitmap image is usually used for photographic quality images. That means if you take an embarrassing photo of your little brother and want to blow it up to a larger size to use for a banner to hang at a social gathering to publicly humiliate him for going into your room when you weren't home (it happens), it's going to have to be a Bitmap image. Just make sure that it's taken at a high DPI because it wont have the same effect if it ends up looking like a blocky flesh colored mess instead of a clear photo of him sucking his thumb in his sleep.

  • Design Tip: Adding depth to your banner designs

    Adding depth to your banner designs will help them to appear more professional and will guarantee that they're a step above the rest. When we think of depth, the first thing that comes to mind is perspective in illustration, but you can also achieve this by paying attention to the way all of your elements fit together.

    Texture

    Adding texture to your banners is one way to make sure the background is more interesting and, at the same time, it helps your main elements to stand out against something other than a plain flat color. You can search for or create your own high resolution textures. When searching for textures, you should make sure that, if they're raster images, they're high enough resolution to fit the size banner that you're creating. Otherwise, the background will look pixelated. Seamless patterns are another way to guarantee your texture spans across the entire size of the banner. Seamless patterns are swatches created in a way that all sides meet up to create a repeating pattern that tiles itself throughout a shape in the same way a color fill would. Whichever you use, it's always best to keep textures subtle. Make sure it falls into a muted color and doesn't take away from the main elements of the banner.

    Gradients

    A simple design can be made to look professional and clean when using gradients. In the same way that textures should be made subtle, a gradient is also best when used sparingly. Subtle gradients are modern, especially when used with a pleasing color palette. Let the colors blend together slowly and over a large span of space.

    Depth of field

    Try using images in the background in a way where they drop out of focus. You can blur the image and put it behind the main elements or pull back the transparency to make the object drop into the background. Another thing to remember is that different colors will cary different visual waits. This means that things like cool, dark colors tend to recede into the background of the design, while warm, bright colors tend to move to the forefront.

  • Banner Basics: Embedding Images and Outlining Fonts

    Outlining & Embedding Here at banner4sale, we do our best to make your experience as quick and easy as possible. Today I am going to address two of the biggest things that hinder and slow this process, embedding images and outlining fonts. If you are placing an image into your file or linking to another file, please make sure to embed everything into the file you are going to upload. This ensures that your linked image or file comes attached to your artwork. Otherwise in most cases a empty box will just display where your image was supposed to be, or it will do its best to display your image, but this usually occurs with a loss of resolution. banner4sale.com font tips The other key thing to do is to outline all fonts when uploading a document with any text. If your text is not outlined and we do not have the fonts on our computers then your font will not be displayed correctly. banner4sale.com embedding artwork tips Both of these things are quick and easy to do before you upload your files and help ensure that you have a wonderful experience with us.

  • Billboard Banner for Stanley Donwood

    Check out the new billboard installed this week. Don't forget to come out for the Stanley Donwood

  • Smart Pot Vinyl Banners

    We have some really cool clients at banner4sale we are always getting to see the next greatest idea. So the next time you need to plant a few flowers around the house make sure to check out the Smart Pot, the Smart Pot is a soft sided fabric container that holds its shape and your plants will just thrive in. Check out these photos of the vinyl banners we just printed for Smart Pot these banners are really colorful and super bright, you will be able to see these hanging from a mile away.

  • Boost Mobile vinyl banners

    Vinyl banners are a great way to get your products noticed in retail stores, Boost Mobil uses banner4sale to out fit all there retail locations with vinyl banners, these banners are really visible from a long ways away. So next time you see a Boost Mobile banner remember banner4sale printed them.

  • Kawasaki Outdoor Banners

    Next time your in a Kawasaki dealer ship keep an eye out for these really cool outdoor banners we printed for Kawasaki, Kawasaki will be using these banners for events and at there trade shows, Trade show banners are a great way to let people know who your brand is in a big way. These banners can also be used for events of any kind so make sure to check banner4sale.com the next time you need banner printing.

  • Huge Green Banners

    We printed these huge Kawasaki green banners the other day. There's just something about Kawasaki green... makes me think of my kx80 dirt-bike I had when I was a kid. Oh those were the days... As you can see these were printed on an 8 foot roll and then hand cut and hand finished by one of our Large Format Banner experts.

  • The Sleeping Sea King Stage Back Drop

    Southern California rock band The Sleeping Sea King asked us to provide them with a backdrop for their upcoming string of live shows is support of their new album "May Cause Death". This banner is a perfect size for smaller club shows @ 10' x 8' and large enough for larger capacity events as well. This banner is perfect for photos having been printed on matte super smooth vinyl which is non reflective as well as durable and easy to clean after club shows. For a free quote call Jared @ 951-684-3111

  • City WT Kung Fu Banner NYC

      New York City can be a tough place to live, and a tough place to do business! City WT Kung Fu wants to reach out and grab the attention of NYC citizens to train them to defend themselves and stay fit. This 6' x 11' banner printed with their artwork should get the message across. If you need help defending yourself from competitors, our eye catching large format banners can help. Please contact Marc at 951-684-3111 for a quote on one today.

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