U.S. Bank Stadium | Minneapolis, MN | 2017 – A logo vector file allows a logo or design to be replicated in multiple formats and uses (like the Vikings logos in this image), with no degradation of quality or design inconsistencies.
Have you ever looked at a company’s logo on a website or printed on promotional products like a mug and seen those ugly little stairstep pixels on the edges? It looks unprofessional and certainly betrays the company’s best efforts to claim they are offering high-quality products. If they can’t get their own logo to look crisp and clean, what sort of attention to detail are they putting into the products and services they offer?
If your flip the script, you are only right to wonder what could be done to keep your own logo from coming off with that saw-toothed unprofessional look.
This is where vector graphics from advanced graphics software suites like Adobe Illustrator come into play. They are the one tried-true and scientifically tested way to ensure your logo looks razor crisp printed on a promotional pen, as it does on a computer screen when someone views your website.
If you want your logo to look as sharp as your company’s image, it’s worth taking the time to understand what a logo vector is and why it is important.
What Are Vector Graphics?
Vector graphics use mathematical formulas to create points, lines, arcs, and shapes. They render graphics at 800 dots per inch (DPI) or higher which is far beyond the resolution capabilities of web graphics that are generally rendered at 72 or 96 DPI. This prevents that ugly stairstep look that fouls so many low-resolution images.
This mathematical representation also means that vector graphics are infinitely scalable. The edge of the graphic will remain just as razor-sharp when it’s scaled down to 10% to be printed on a coffee mug as it is when scaled up to 1,000% to be printed on a billboard.
Vector Graphics for Logo Development
Once a line or shape is created using vector graphics, you can change its color, tone, or opacity with a single click. The entire shape then changes without any inconsistency in the edges.
If you want to see what your logo looks like in azure blue as well as cardinal red, all it takes is a click. This makes it easy for graphic designers to make changes to color, tone, shape, and shading much faster than they could with a pixelated image.
It’s the perfect tool for quickly generating new logo mockups. Literally, dozens of slightly different iterations can be created in minutes, letting you, or your client sort through the options they like best.
Vector Logos for Master Files
‘The infinite scalability and crisp resolution of vector-based graphics also make them the perfect file format for mastering your logo. You can easily export a vector logo to another format like a Jpeg or a Tiff and the software will render it as pixels with the same crisp lines.
Whereas you can’t take a pixelated logo and render it as a vector to improve the resolution. You will just end up with the same jagged edges because the source resolution of pixel-based rasterized graphics is too low.
If you need to have your vector logo printed on paper using pixels, all you need to do is adjust the size in the vector-based program, like Adobe Illustrator, and export it as a rasterized Jpeg or Tiff at the correct size.
Vector Logos for Easy File Transfers
One of the great things about the electronic postscript (EPS) nature or vector-based graphics is that the file sizes are very small. This makes them friendly for e-mailing to print vendors or transmitting through online portals.
Let’s say you want to send a copy of your logo to be printed on a tradeshow banner and it needed to be 36” X 36” to show up boldly on the final product. Most banner printers need a pixel resolution of 240 to 300 DPI. In a rasterized graphic a file this size would be tens of megabytes or more!
Sending it via e-mail or a web portal might be prohibitive depending on your network speed. With a vector graphic, the logo would be less than 1 megabyte and will e-mail with ease, even on a slower network connection.
Vector Graphics for Remote Collaboration
Working remotely is the way of the future. The small file size and the ability to make quick changes let multiple creative employees work on the logo in minutes. If a compound shape needs to be changed to allow the underlying image, one graphic designer can handle the change in seconds and then e-mail it to an account rep working with a client in the field.
Higher Resolution for Photo Realism
These days photorealistic designs are everywhere. Though they are nearly impossible to do correctly with raster graphics. Especially if you need to represent a logo with photorealistic elements on large-scale printed media.
Here again, the mathematical scalability and versatility of vector graphics come perfectly into play. Graphic artists can produce photorealistic elements using vector graphics in a fraction of the time it takes to make the same things in raster graphics. All with crisp clean edges that defy real-world expectations.
What Is the Best Software to Create a Vector Logo?
These days the best Software program for creating vector files remains Adobe Illustrator. It’s often integrated into Adobe’s Creative Suite of software which allows it to work seamlessly with other cutting-edge software like the equally popular Adobe Photoshop.
Corel Draw is another option for creating a Vector logo. Corel has been around for a long time, and while they don’t have as many plug-ins and sophisticated features as Adobe Illustrator, Corel Draw does tend to have a much more affordable price tag attached to it.
Ultimately, if you’re looking to break into the world of professional Vector logo design, Adobe Illustrator is the best option. Especially since it works seamlessly with other cutting-edge graphics software like Adobe Photoshop.
If you just need to create some logo options or develop crisp designs occasionally for presentations, the Corel Draw might be the more budget-friendly option. It has all the basic functionality you need to create vector logos and crisp promotional graphics.