VitalBodies Inkscape Vector Art License Plate

by vitalbodies on July 12th, 2008

VitalBodies Inkscape Vector Art License Plate

VitalBodies got the opportunity to play around with Inkscape, an Open Source Vector drawing program that is somewhat like CorelDraw or Illustrator. Inkscape’s native format is Scalable Vector Graphics SVG.

Click image for a larger graphic. Created with Inkscape and exported to PNG…

Having barely tried Inkscape before, the results seem exciting. With more time and effort this could have been more polished.

First Impression:

The way this program can blur lines is amazing and useful.

The gradient editor is fast and easy to understand like most of the program.

The overall ease of use and power of the program is excellent for what was attempted.

There is something refreshing about the way the program does what you would expect with relative ease.

The interface is clear and easy to use.

For the most part, an artist who is used to working in vector graphics can jump right in.

Inkscapes is fun and a pleasure to use.

Doing art is fun in Inkscape…

What A New User Ran Up Against:

Having hardly used the program you expect some kind of a learning curve.

There were a few things we missed which might or might not be the program’s fault.

We did not see how to turn on and off Snap to Guide Lines for the guide lines we created and it remained a mystery as to why the program seemed to default to 90dpi for exporting bitmaps or how to effectively change that and keep the drawing’s dimensions what we wanted. We were hoping for 96dpi, which is our LCD screen’s native resolution.

Changing the font of the selected text was a bit odd as the drop down menu would not always show up or would flash on and off.

The biggest challenge an old hand at CorelDraw will face, is that you can not do multi-page layouts where you have many many pages. The program is not designed as a page layout program (in that sense) like CorelDraw or the Open Source program Scribus is.

VitalBodies suggests converting/exporting to SVG if you plan to try some of your existing drawings in Inkscape. You can also export to PDF but you may get mixed results on things like gradient fills and such.

Would VitalBodies Recommend Inkscape:

Without a doubt. This is an amazing program first off, and profound for being free. Having spent years in CorelDraw this will take some getting used to but VitalBodies figures about three solid drawings and this will feel like home…

Scalable Vector Graphics:

Generally speaking, you have vector or raster art in the world of creating 2d computer screen art. A raster image would be made up of dots like what you manipulate in Photoshop or GIMP.

As the wikipedia would currently say “Vector graphics is the use of geometrical primitives such as points, lines, curves, and shapes or polygon(s), which are all based upon mathematical equations, to represent images in computer graphics.”

In most vector programs you do not see the mathematical equations unless you get deep into the code or do art at a code level which most people do not do. What you would see is letters/fonts, shapes, lines and such that you easily move about and change.

In terms of the process of creating art, the differences are huge. To select a pre-drawn shape (like the gradient sky behind the mountains) in a raster program can be very difficult and could involve using multiple techniques and tools unless that shape is on it’s own layer. In a vector program you would just click on it. This is because in a raster program you have to somehow select all those dots.

CorelDraw or Inkscape are both excellent vector programs. Inkscape is free, open source and fun to use.

How To Install Inkscape In Ubuntu Hardy:

Applications > Add/Remove… > Supported Applications > Search Inkscape > Enable (check in check box) > Apply Changes…


VitalBodies recently shifted to using all Open Source programs running on an Open Source Operating System Ubuntu. VitalBodies would like to thank the Inkscape team that makes art a pleasure!

- Draw Freely -

- Visit Inkscape: -

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