What is a vectored file? And why is it required for screen printing?

A vectored image is a digital graphic that is created using mathematical equations, as opposed to pixels like a raster image. The main advantage of a vectored image is that it can be scaled up or down without losing any quality or becoming pixelated. This makes it ideal for printing on various sizes of products, from small items like business cards to large banners and billboards.

In screen printing, vectored images are particularly important because the printing process involves transferring ink onto a physical surface through a stencil. This stencil is created by separating the different colors of the design into individual layers, each of which is printed separately onto the final product.

A vectored image allows for clean and precise separation of these layers, resulting in a high-quality final print. Without a vectored image, the separation of colors can be blurry and undefined, causing the final print to appear low-quality and unprofessional.

There are a variety of software programs that can be used to create vectored images, including Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, Inkscape, and more. These programs offer different levels of functionality and varying learning curves, but they all have the ability to create and edit vectored graphics.

In addition to these software programs, there are also online tools and services that can automatically vectorize raster images, such as Vector Magic and Adobe Capture. However, the quality of the resulting vectored image may vary based on the complexity and quality of the original raster image.

It's important to note that creating vectored images requires some knowledge and experience in vector graphics and design, so it may be helpful to work with a professional graphic designer or design team to ensure the best quality results.

Overall, vectored images are an essential part of the screen printing process, providing businesses with the ability to create high-quality, customized products that accurately represent their brand.