Stop signs, Simpsons, Symbols and similarities? – I ran out of “S” words.

Stop Sign

So here is my attempt at a stop sign from the image given to us. I copied the image into flash and put it off to the side to use later for the color. First, I made a background layer which I colored blue by taking the color sampler and sampling the sky from the image. I then made a new layer and created the octagon and toyed with the stroke and fill until it looked about right for a stop sign. I sampled the color from the stop sign image again.  I added a textbox on this layer and put the “STOP” portion in there, just keeping the color white. I added the bolts by using the circle option and sampled the color from the sign again for those. Lastly I made a thick line at the bottom for the pole and once again, sampled the color from the original sign.

Lisa Simpson's head

Now Lisa Simpson’s head was a different story from the stop sign. I had a plan for that one, while this one required a decent amount of trial and error. It took me probably around 15 minutes or so to do. I went right to left so the right side is not nearly as clean as the left side. I hated the pen tool at first but as time went on I got used to it and, although I am still not a big fan, it got better. I was able to close off the image and color it no problem. Overall it wasn’t too terrible of an experience except at the beginning.

Alignment of symbols

The alignment wasn’t too bad either. It lined up everything how I wanted on the edges and then just used the align tool to space everything evenly and line it all up row by row. It really wasn’t that hard. I did all of this on my own computer except the stop sign, which I did in the lab. I downloaded flash on my Mac and worked at home. Taking screenshots is pretty easy too as I can highlight the portion of the screen that I want instead of having to crop it afterward.

Merge v. Object Drawing

Now for the difference between merge and object drawing. For the example for this I created two overlapping ovals with large strokes to illustrate the points I want to make. We’ll start off with the simple one, object drawing. When you create an object in object drawing, that is exactly what you are doing. The object you’ve made is there and you are not really able to do anything besides move it, size it and change its relative location as far as I can tell/know. When objects that were created in object drawing mode overlap you can take one away and the entire object will remain there as you have overlapped two separate objects Now in merge drawing you have created many different things as can be seen in the example above. The stroke and fill are separate pieces and can even be broken down into other separate pieces by highlighting portions of them. You can also adjust those individual portions after the image has been created, something you cannot do in object drawing. Lastly, when you overlap two objects in merge drawing you are merging the two. And when you separate them, the object that was on top essentially deletes the portion of the object that was on bottom. This can be see in the illustration above.

Now for the last portion of this post…. What is the difference between bitmap  and vector images? Simply put, it is mathematics. A bitmap image is composed of individual pixels that are each coded with a different color. That pixel size is predetermined so when you zoom in on a bitmap image it becomes, well, pixelated. A vector image is based on mathematics. The image you see is a series of formulas that define that shape and the color is coded into the shape as well. So when you zoom in on a vector image, you are viewing a shape and not a series of pixels that resemble the shape.


About andrewtcoe

College student at Trinity University in San Antonio, TX majoring in Communications.
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