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Review the scanning techniques graphics professionals and photographers use, while delving into workflow considerations and the advanced image-quality controls available in most scanning software. Author Taz Tally explains the core concepts, such as how resolution and interpolation affect scans; introduces the industry-standard SilverFast scanning software; and shares the settings to achieve the best results from a scan. The course also covers keeping your scanner and its parts clean and free of dust, and includes a variety of start-to-finish scanning tasks.
In this chapter we're going to be doing start to finish projects, which means we're not only going to be setting up the scan but when we are going to see what we can do with those images after the scan and by doing that it will give us even more insight as to why we make some of the decisions that we've been making during the actual scanning process. Let's start this chapter by doing a scan of the simple Line Art image. And just remember back to our previous discussions, when we scan simple line art, it's all about reproducing the edge. This feather for instance that we're going to scan here. It's not about what's going on in the interior it's about the edge that's what creates this image.
So the decision that we want to make during the scan a sharp and smooth and consistent edge as possible. Not only for the pixel-based image that we end up with but also you want to take this pixel-based image and convert it into vectors. Why, because this image is a simple line art, if you want to scale, skew and rotate it so that we don't get degradation of our edge we convert it into vectors then we can scale and skew and rotate it to our heart's delight plus as you're going to see it makes it very easy to add colors. And even if this image were a colored image, I'm going to scan it one bit black-and-white and then we're going to apply the colors later and that's an important point to make.
If you start with simple line art even if it has colors assigned to it, if you know what those colors are either CMYK values or spot color values we don't try to reproduce these colors during the scan, we try to do that when we're working in something like Illustrator. In order to get our high-quality edge, we're going to come over here and we're going to choose our scan type and for working with Line Art typically we're going to go with 8-bit grayscale for detailed line-art and one-bit black-and-white for a Scan Type for simple line-art. This will give us more editability to 8-bit but we're not about editability we're all about reproducing our edge, so we're going to choose one-bit black-and-white.
And that's how we're going to name our image, Feather, numerological name, a bit depth black-and-white, and now let's decide on resolution. There are two characteristics if we want to pay attention to in our scan to give us the best quality most consistent edge possible. One, is when we want to use the optical resolution of the scanner, and two, we want to make sure we scan this at 100%, no scaling. Both of those will minimize the amount of interpolation that occurs along that edge. The optical resolution of this scanner is 1200 pixels per inch, but as you demonstrated in Chapter 5 we can choose 600 which doesn't involve any interpolation, the placement of the pixels is the same the pixels are just a little bit larger.
And typically with simple line art that takes us to vectors, 600 is going to be fine. If you're not quite sure you can scan it at both 6 and 12 and then compare the results. Here I think we're going to do very well at 600 pixels per inch. So we're going to choose 600 pixels per inch, no scaling, black-and-white one-bit, and then I'm going to take it to vectors so I'm going to go ahead and Scan and Save. All right here's our feather black- and-white 600.tif in Bridge and I love working on a Bridge because Bridge is kind of the nexus of a creative suite if you will.
You can save an image out of one application like in this case a scanning program and take it right into another application and use one of those tools. In this case, we're going to be going to Illustrator. Illustrator is a vector drawing and editing program. In order to take this pixel-based image and take it into Illustrator we're going to go tools>Illustrator and go to Live Trace, and we're going to choose Vectorize layers into a single document and we'll choose the basic CMYK, so we can assign spot colors to this, cyan, magenta, yellow and black process colors or if you wanted to go RGB you can go that way as well.
We'll take it to the print version in this case, all right and then over to Illustrator we go. By the way if Illustrator wasn't launch you'll automatically launch Illustrator. We'll just take the default settings here. Well, we just click on Expand and let's go and take a look at that edge, look at that, beautiful. The reason why we're getting that high-quality edge let's just go back to Bridge for a second. Let's go ahead and open this image and look at it in Photoshop, see those beautiful pixels and the nice smooth consistent edge.
That's because we use the optical resolution of the scanner and no scaling. So we take that pixel-based image, we convert to vectors and we get this really smooth slick edge. Now as for as editing and assigning colors are concerned, you can just come in here in the Direct Selection tool, we'll assign the Green, we'll take the stem, and assign may be a Yellow, and we can assign a dark green to these, beautiful.
So you know, in this way this workflow makes an enormous amount of sense because instead of trying to reproduce these colors on a scan, if there are spot or process colors, it's almost impossible to reproduce them exactly. But this way, you scan in Black and White, you create the vector and then you assign the colors and they are going to be perfect. They will be spot on, if you will. So there you go, they're scanning simple black-and-white, Line Art converting to Vectors and then editing them in Illustrator and now so you know we can scale, skew and rotate this to a heart's delight and those vector paths will remain very high-quality.
I mentioned if you've got some stuff on the actual scan that you don't want, you'd select them and they become vectors and just edit, and they're gone.
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