Friday, December 14, 2012

Fantasy Heraldry pt 3 - Tracing gifs tutorial

Hi All,

  As you can see I am starting to suffer from ooh shinitis. So to keep on track here is how you convert those pesky gif files into lovely SVG and PNG formats using Inkscape.

First, if you haven't already done so, download the latest version of Inkscape from here. I'm using 0.48 and it looks like I'm a little behind. As always this should be FREE. Never pay anyone for Inkscape.

Step 1: Open your copy of Inscape.

Open Inkscape

Step 2: Open your desired gif image it will pop up asking you to link or embed, choose embed.

You now opened gif image.

Step 3: Make sure the image is selected by mouse clicking on it. You will see the little black arrows.

Arrows show that it has been selected

Step 4: Go to the Path dialog and select Trace Bitmap.

 This window will pop up. I hit update in the picture, but all it did was give me the white rectangle in the preview. I just left all the values at their defaults and hit okay.

It will be hard to tell, the black lines may look thicker.

Step 5: Drag the tracing off of the gif. It should be on top so you can select it with the mouse and then drag it where you like. It is possible that you could just hit delete at this point, since your original bitmap should still be selected. I didn't do that just to give myself visual proof of the two different layers.

Trace on the left, original on the right.
 Step 5a: I now have to go back and select the gif image again.

Step 6: Delete the gif. We don't need it any more.

Step 7: Move our tracing back into the image area.

Final step is to "Save As". It will default to SVG you can select PNG or whatever you'd like. You now have a clean scalable image to use in your heraldry projects.

As always, let me know if you have any questions or if you need me to do a video to help you understand the process more readily.


I've also just noticed that I've passed 15,000 views and this is my 151st post. Since I wasn't paying attention I'll have to figure out something to do for 20,000 views and my 200th post. 

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