REM: Vector vs Bitmap

In simple terms, a bitmap image is one made up of lots of tiny different coloured pixels. This differs from a vector, which rather than being made up by tiny dots, is coded by instruction. Vectors generally have sharper and nicer lines and edges, and don’t pixelate when you zoom up or look in real close. They each have their uses however, for example fonts and logos are usually vectors – while photographs viewed on a computer screen are usually bitmaps.

In class we took images of vectors from the Internet (which technically are bitmaps as Google transforms them into jpegs) and transformed them into something new. I took a simple vector of a pin-up girl, duplicated her several times and changed her into some kind of weird looking monster wheel thing. vector1

We then attempted to make a symmetrical face by cropping a celebrity in half and using a horizontally flipped copy on the other side. For quite a few of us, the results weren’t quite as creepy as we expected. As it turns out, some celebrities do have relatively symmetrical faces, such as Chris Pratt, who I edited. We then attempted to turn the celebrity into a vector image, which involved transforming the image to black and white and then manually upping the contrast about twenty times until we’re satisfied. I tried doing it a different way by using the ‘threshold’ adjustment, and the result was almost exactly the same (but a lot easier to achieve). To spice things up a little, I added a vector edit I had whipped up earlier ( – a bunch of hands I morphed together that I thought almost looked like a spider).

chris-pratt-bio-photo vector2  vector3
I suppose what’s learnt here is that the two don’t necessarily have to be isolated. You can remix both vector and bitmap based images together to create something cool.


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