Alright, so I spent the evening initiating myself into the world of bitmap conversions into vector drawings, via line tracing function of various software packages, as demonstrated in a number of tutorial videos on Youtube.
Most software packages I looked at are Windows based, however, Adobe Illustrator is Mac compatible and disc software for Illustrator 9 is still available on Amazon for about $70, used, plus shipping. My layman's understanding of this is that I could use something like Adobe Illustrator (largely ignoring 90%, or likely more, of the software's capability), to import my JPEG, or my PDF file format, into a new document. From there, I can apply specific formats within the Image Trace tool bar, perhaps "line art," to automatically trace my ship image into a vector based, and grouped image. From there, I can ungroup the image, and select specific groups for copy and paste, such as my various gun port sizes/styles, and then place them where I want them. I can then import artwork for the quarter galleries, and various elements of the stern, and repeat the image tracing procedure. Also, by unlocking the image, I can manipulate lines within a grouping to better suit my purposes and design intent.
So, assuming that's the basic gist of what I need to do, here, is Adobe a workable platform for the complete novice, or would I be better served finding something more basic?
I am still very uncertain, for example, how importing what is a relatively large drawing will appear in the Adobe active screen. In all of the tutorials of various imported imagery and artwork, the graphic artist is shown corner dragging the image after import, generally, to increase it's size. However, for something large, would I first have to reduce it's scale to, say, 50% just so that I could work on large continuous details, like the wales, without having to break the image into a series of tiles that are then stitched back together later? Does anyone use Adobe for their ship modeling design purposes?
I'm also curious as to how detailed the auto line-tracing functions are, with consideration to the many intricate filigree details of a baroque warship like SR. If it is going to be necessary for me to go in and hand trace the stern gallery railings, for example, with a pen feature - with all of the attendant curves and reverse curves and mouldings, and etc - then it seems like hand-drawing and scaling would actually be faster, if equally frustrating. Or, perhaps it's easy to do that, once you get the hang of it. Is the trick to increase the scale and select, say a stern railing, from within the larger scan of Berain's stern schematic, for example, so that the railing is large enough for the auto-trace feature to pick out the intricacies of the design? No experience = no clue.
Any input into these matters is greatly appreciated.
All the best,
Edited by Hubac's Historian, 04 January 2017 - 03:59 AM.