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There are two basic types of images, and we can provide you with both. Let's go over the differences between them.
Raster images are typically used for photographs, digital artwork and web graphics (such as banner ads, social media content and email graphics). If you have ever seen a JPEG, GIFs, or PNG file, these are examples of Raster images. The image is made up of rows and columns of small colored boxes. Raster images are measured in Dots Per Inch (DPI) or Pixels Per Inch (PPI). Most internet sites run pictures between 72 - 100 dpi. This allows them to look amazing on your screen and also load off the internet fairly fast. Most Raster images are printed at 300 dpi, so you might need to save various versions of an image depending on how it is going to be used. We recommending saving your Raster images in the approximate size that they will be used in. So your designer is not having to stretch or shrink them. If you have a choice its always easier to go down in pixel count and size then to go up.
The higher the pixel density, the smaller the boxes and the more the image can be enlarged before it becomes distorted. This distortion comes from the fact that as the picture increases in size so does the number of colored boxes required to make the image. The problem is the computer docent have any information on what color these new extra boxes should be, so it does its best to guess. This can cause problems, commonly referred to as a picture becoming pixilated or low resolution. If you look at a straight line or curve in Raster format, it is actually made up of three different colors. This makes it hard to print a logo using a Raster format.
Raster formats are really great for capturing detailed images that might need those subtle changes to really have the image look lifelike. Your face and skin tone are made up of many shapes, curves and slight changes in pigment. These slight changes are better captured by a Raster image than by something with a hard line such as a Vector image.
If you have ever seen detailed illustrative work, industrial illustration or a companies logos, they are most likely Vector Images. PDF, EPS, and AI are all file formats that save images in Vector Formats. Every Vector image is a mixture of lines, curves, and edges. Each line or curve runs through control points or nodes, and these points are assigned an X and Y axis location on the grid. Each of these points has a definite position on the x- and y-axes of the work plane and determines the direction of the path; further, each path may be assigned various attributes, including such values as stroke color, shape, curve, thickness, and fill. Because of this, the images size can be adjusted without affecting the image.
Vector images have clear, sharp lines, where one thing begins, and the last things end. Some images are designed this way, such as letters in the English language. However, other images have more subtle transition points such as the human face. Using sharp lines on a subtle transition image can cause the image to look distorted or cartoonish.
Vector images are great for logos or any image that might be used in several different places. Because they can be shrunk down to fit on a business card and blown up to fit on a highway billboard. Like we mentioned before this is because the image is made up of a collection of nodes that have a defined X and Y Axis. This node will have information on what stroke, color, shape, curve, thickness, and fill to use to get to the next node. So if the space between the nodes is shrunk down or expanded it doesn't matter. Also for any image that needs sharp clearly defined lines, it's best to go with a Vector format.