Artwork for Signs — Go for the Vector!

Updated: Jun 24, 2020

You’re planning to put up a sign, stretch a banner, or design your business cards. You need exciting, motivating images that tell your business’ story, and further your brand.

But where do you start?

First, a little Printing 101: To insure the crispest, sharpest, most vibrant signs, banners and other media, you should start with artwork that is high-resolution. You’ll hear printing professionals refer to 300 dpi, 100 dpi, etc. That simply measures the dots per inch within the artwork. The more dots per inch, the better the final product will look. The best way to get consistent high resolution is to use artwork and images created as a vector file. Now you ask, what is a vector file, and how do I get one?

There are two kinds of computer art files, raster (or bitmap) files and vector files. Raster files are composed of colorized pixels, and usually work well only at the size they are created, usually for online or screen viewing. In other words, if you create an image for Instagram, don’t expect it to look good blown up to poster size. The pixels will enlarge into fuzzy groups and your picture or image will look blurry, lumpy, and out of focus.