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Illustrator offers this thing called Live Trace. It takes a piece of pixel-based artwork, which might be something you created in Photoshop, or maybe you drew it on a piece of paper and scanned it. Anyway, Live Trace takes the pixels and converts them to vectors. The advantage is that you can take even a small drawing and enlarge it as much as you want. For examples, in this chapter you and I will take this smallish sketch and blow it up to create this ginormous pirate flag. This is the actual product of this chapter.
It's flat-out amazing. But don't for a second think that Live Trace is an automatic art creation feature. It doesn't replace the Pen tool, it doesn't replace hard work, it doesn't replace anything. If you have a rotten little GIF image and you want to convert it to something smooth and beautiful, Live Trace will not do that. As usual, garbage in garbage out. Good stuff in, awesome stuff out. Here, let me show you what I'm talking about, as well as the best way to exploit this really amazing feature.
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