produced with normal media on paper, or created on
computer using dedicated drawing applications, are
often called 2d illustrations.
As the name suggests, they are produced in 2
dimensions, while 3d illustrations are produced in 3
dimensions. More on that in the 3d illustration
You surely know techniques like pencil, pen and
watercolor, airbrush, etc., used to create drawings
on paper or any other « real » media, so I will not
discuss these here.
Since computers have become more powerfull, these
techniques can be reproduced on screen much more
No more dirty fingers, spots of paint or other « side
effects » when deadlines are near...
Errors can be corrected by going back one or more
steps ( if you saved regularly that is ... ) and you
can produce several versions without starting all
Since the mid- nineties, I use the computer for the
creation of illustrations ( not for my paintings, of
Preparatory scetches are often still made on paper
and scanned to import in my drawing application for
Illustrations created on a computer, can be divided
in two categories.
Most common are Bitmap- images, that are constructed
in a series of PIXELS or points that have a specific
color and a certain RESOLUTION, expressed in ppi (
pixels per inch )
When such bitmap- images are only to be viewed on
screen, 72ppi is adequate, but when they are to be
used in a brochure or other quality print, they
should have a much higher resolution.
Usually, this will be 300 ppi.
For newspapers and similar prints, 100 to 170ppi will
Photographs and scanned images will always be bitmaps
also images that were created in applications like
Adobe Photoshop™ , PaintShop™ or similar, will
be bitmaps and thus resolution dependent.
illustratiions do not have a given resolution.
They are created by connecting points to form
To create or view such vector- drawings, you need a
application, though some bitmap- applications (
PhotoShop™ a.o. )
are able to read such documents.
Prior to be used on a webpage or in print, vector-
normally need to be converted ( rendered ) to Bitmap-
An example of such a rendered vector- image
can be seen at right.