Opening Vector Files

Vector images require special image software programs that have the ability to edit vector files rather than just raster files. Some popular vector image editing programs include Adobe Illustrator, CorelDraw, and Inkscape. But you can also use Adobe Photoshop to open and edit vector files as well. Photoshop is traditionally a bitmap editor, but it can be used with a variety of other image formats like vector.

Below are the steps in how to obtain the right vector software and then use it to open up a vector file. The steps may be a little different depending on the software you are using, but the basic idea should still be the same. If you know how to navigate a file menu and perform basic actions on there then you should be okay.

1) You need to choose which vector editing software you want to use for your vector editing needs. For the sake of this tutorial, let’s assume you want to use Photoshop. To obtain Photoshop, go to the Adobe website and purchase a monthly subscription service to use the program at an affordable price. This means you won’t have to pay hundreds of dollars to purchase the program like you had to in the past. Adobe now lets people basically “rent” their software for a low $19.99 monthly rate.

2) If you have an older version of Photoshop then you would double-click the Photoshop icon on your desktop to open the software. If you are using the monthly cloud service that was mentioned in the previous step, then you just sign in to your Adobe Creative Cloud account and access the software online.

3) Once the software is open, go to the horizontal menu on the top and click file. On the drop down menu, click ‘Open.’ As an alternative to doing it this way, you can use the command (CTRL+O) on your keyboard to quickly choose open. There is also another choice on the drop down menu called “Open As Smart Object” that you can choose instead of just Open. Some graphic designers will tell you that this option is better.

4) Now a window will come up asking you to choose the file that you want to open in Photoshop. So naturally, you will navigate to the folder that contains the vector file in it. Once you have located that folder, just click on the vector file and then click ‘Open.’ The file should load right into Photoshop, and now you can begin editing the vector image.

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