February '16

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 6 F E B R U A R Y P R I N T W E A R || 73 pricing, and much of our pre-production set up is based on color count. For en- gravers, and for cutting applications, color count is limited to our equipment and the number of layers we may be willing and able to lay down. Single-color vector artwork is often best, as it is much easier to add shades than to remove or consolidate them. Those involved with embroidery will also keep a diligent eye on color count. The palette(s) used to create the image is very important. An image may appear to be only black and white, while at closer glance, there may be several different versions of black used to create the design. These will be seen as separate layers for most of our ap- plications and will need to be consolidated. Other colors created in multiple palettes can be just as problematic. Many low-quality vector designs may have far too many nodes. Line art (vector) is compiled of specific points and direc- tions between each point. With too many, and redundant nodes, the result is a slowed cutter and laser, and can seriously increase the size of the file itself. Overly complicated files have a plethora of issues, including the possibility of causing software glitches and slowing or even crashing a program. Also, double check to make sure there are no phantom elements behind your vector art- work. These can become especially bother- some when moving to production. I always recommend viewing your image close up in a Wireframe view. Question the quality of the image you plan to use as an applicable graphic itself. Make sure the art is not just something eye- catching, but an adequate representation of the message you, or your client, is trying to project. Some events and graphics can cross styles, but consider a genre to be as impor- tant as the name itself. Perhaps a sporting logo is not the best representation for a professional layout, even if your client really likes a particular mascot. Also consider in- creasing the excitement in a typically "bor- ing" design with a bit of vector imagery. TEMPLATES The usefulness of a piece of vector artwork is boundless above the alternatives. The amount of time saved in the use of a single piece of clipart can pay for volumes of pur- chased graphics. Why reinvent the wheel? If you need a pair of feathered wings for a particular job, you can either draw them The first example above shows the boring text that your customer needs for the order. The second image is a bit more exciting with clipart. The third shows a complete design from a template that is certain to impress your customer. The important note is that none of these images took more than 5 minutes to create. (Image courtesy Action Illustrated)

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