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Unit 30: Digital Graphics

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Natalie Fenn

on 22 April 2015

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Transcript of Unit 30: Digital Graphics

LO1: Know the hardware and software required to work with graphic images

Pass 1: Hardware
Working with graphic images requires suitable hardware and software to produce the best results. Suitable hardware for a graphics system should include these components at appropriate performance levels:

Graphics card
- needed to produce a display at a resolution and colour depth that meet the needs of the user within the capabilities of the monitor
Internal memory
(RAM)- to hold the running software and graphic images
Processor
- to run the software and to work out the calculations needed to manipulate digital graphics
Digital card reader
- to quickly and easily accept graphic images from a digital camera
File storage-
to save the graphic images e.g. CD ROM, hard drive USB Storage devices
USB devices
- to plug in pen drives to input or move graphic images to other devices, such as digital cameras
Input devices
- to capture graphical images and transfer them to the computer. Graphical input devices include digital cameras, scanners and graphics tablets.

Graphics cards
The graphics card takes digital information from
the operating system specifying what is to be shown on
the screen and makes this into a signal that the display
understands.
The signal usually travels along a video
cable to the monitor, which uses it to create the
picture. Most modern graphics cards are very capable of producing
an image that meets the highest needs of any monitor without noticeably slowing the system down.

Professional graphic designers value a DVI (digital visual interface) connection between graphics card and monitor in preference to the older VGA (visual
graphics array) cable connection, as it gives a better picture.

InternaL memory
The internal memory of a computer system is called RAM. lt is primarily
used to hold programs when they are running and any documents or
graphic files that the user has opened.
There is a constant flow of data between the hard disk, the RAM and
the processor

very fast electronic memory between RAM and another device, used to make the system run faster.
When a software application is run, the program is first copied from the hard disk to RAM. Once in RAM, the program can travel at very high speed to the processor where the program code can be run. RAM works at the speed of electricity, much faster than a hard disk, which works at the speed the disk spins.
Similarly, when a document
or data file is opened, it is first copied from the hard disk to RAM. Once it is in RAM, the file can be worked on by the user.
Processors
The processor (or CPU) is the heart of a computer system, allowing the operating system and other programs to run.
The processor is very important in maintaining
performance with complex digital images, so it's important to
choose a system with a powerful CPU.

The power of a CPU depends upon:
.processor speed - the faster the circuits are driven, the faster the computer runs
.processor design - the way the circuits have been designed has a massive
effect on performance. Modern CPUs may have single, duo or quad
cores with a lot of variation within these designs.
There is a lot of choice of processor designs and it takes research to find out
which performs better.

Some graphics manipulations are easy for the processor, eg loading a graphic from disk to RAM, which is delegated to the DMA controller(s).

Many graphics operations involve a lot of processor work, such as:
rescaling an image, so the picture is a different size
saving or exporting the image into another format, eg converting a bitmap file into a JPEG file
applying a complex effect to a graphic, such as adjusting the tone or colour balance
All of these operations needs good, fast processor(s) to operate effectively.
lT professionals who work with digital graphics often need to bring
pictures from a digital camera into the computer system. There are four methods for doing this:
cable
card
wireless
cradle
Digital cameras and card readers
File storage
Graphic files need to be stored so they can be used again, modified, backed up or sent to a third party, such as a client
File storage is needed to store files such as:
hard drive
CD-ROM and optical drives
flashcards
USB storage devices
Task
Begin the hardware section of your report
Hardware: graphics card features; internal memory eg cache, RAM; processors; other hardware eg digital camera drivers and card; file storage eg CD ROM, hard drive, flash cards, USB storage devices;
The Hardware section needs to focus on components such as the graphics card and how their features impact upon graphical work.
Task;

Add to your hardware report discussing the different input and output devices required by graphical designers
sections for your report contents
Hardware (P1)
Software (P1)
File Formats (P2)
Comparisons (M1)
Evolving output media (D1)
Input devices e.g. graphics tablet, mouse, digital camera, scanner
Output medium: printer; computer monitor; other eg mobile phone, PDA, plotter
LO1: Know the hardware and software required to work with graphic images
Software
Software is the term used to describe the programs
that run on a computer.
Application software
is used to help people produce work. There are many types of applications that can be used to create, manipulate and view digital graphics.
"identify the vector and raster software software applications you would wish to use as well as other software"
Bitmap (raster) V Vector
Vector graphics are different from bitmap graphics.
The main features of vector graphics are:
. small file size when saved to disk
. no loss of print quality when enlarged or reduced in size
. vector pictures are made from objects such as
circles and rectangles
. each object has an outline and/or fill
. objects may be grouped together.
Vector graphics are very good for diagrams.
Vector graphics
Bitmap (or raster) graphics are pixel-orientated,
meaning that a bitmap image is made from lots of
pixels. Each pixel is a tiny dot in the image with a
colour.
Bitmaps
Vector software
Vector graphics drawing software is used for creating and editing vector graphics. It provides graphic designers with the ability to create precise, scalable and layered images. Both 3-D graphics and CAD (computer-aided design) technology rely heavily on vector graphics.
In computer graphics images can be represented in two ways — using raster graphics (or bitmap) or vector graphics. The former is the representation of images as an array of pixels, and the latter uses paths, points, lines, curves and shapes or polygons (which are all based upon mathematical equations) for the same purpose.
Raster images are based on pixels and thus scale with loss of clarity, while vector-based images can be scaled indefinitely without degrading. In other words, vector graphics are resolution-independent and can remain the highest quality at any scale.
inkscape
CorelDraw
Synfig
Stencyl
Bitmap graphics are different from vector graphics.
They have a large file size when saved to disk and print
quality can become 'blocky' when enlarged or reduced
in size. Bitmap graphics can be created when a picture
is scanned into a computer system using a scanner or
from a digital camera.
Bitmap software
Photoshop
Corel PaintshopPro
Paint
Gimp
Know the hardware and software required to work with graphic images
Software: vector based eg CorelDRAW; bitmap eg Paintshop Pro, Paint; photo manipulation eg Photoshop; others eg image viewers, photo galleries, file conversion
P1. Know the hardware and software required to work with graphic images
"identify the vector and raster software applications you would wish to use as well as other software"
File handling: converting files; file sizes; file formats eg jpg, bmp; file management eg naming files, folder
structures, moving files, deleting files; compression techniques
Graphic images: vector graphics; bitmaps; comparison eg file size, scaling; file format features, typical uses
P2. Understand types of graphic images and graphical file formats
"explain how different types of graphic images relate to file formats.This should include sections explaining the difference between vector and raster images, with some examples of the file formats that can be used to save them to storage media"
Merit 1- Compare the limitations of different hardware and software packages used in graphics work
In the Comparisons section of your report, create two sub-sections one for hardware and the other for software packages used in graphics work.

Add to the hardware sub-section identifying the
limitations
of the following devices compared to others
in the bullet point
:

• File storage media: CD-ROM, hard drive, flash cards, USB storage devices
• Input devices: graphics tablet, mouse, digital camera, scanner

Add to the software sub-section, comparing the
limitations
of vector and raster software applications.

For the merit criterion, limitations need to be compared, both the hardware and software packages used for graphics.

INDEPENDENT RESEARCH
LO3: Be able to use editing tools to edit and manipulate images
P3: The owners children are interested in computer graphics so you are to produce a collection of some annotated screenshots demonstrating the use of editing tools to edit and manipulate images
Obtaining images
What ways could we obtain an image?
Scanning
Importing
Digital camera
Image creation
How can graphic designers create an image?
Freehand
import pre-existing images
Tools and Techniques

Resize
Freehand draw
Rotate
Flip
Crop
Group/ungroup

Standard tools
Special Effects!
soften
Sharpen
water mark
Invert
Colour
Colour balance tool
Colour depth
Layering
useful technique - image can be divided into layers and then a single layer can be selected for editing with all of the other layers locked.
LO3: Be able to use editing tools to edit and manipulate images
P3: The owners children are interested in computer graphics so you are to produce a collection of some annotated screenshots demonstrating the use of editing tools to edit and manipulate images

Graphic creation:
image eg scanning, importing, digital camera; image creation eg free hand draw, assemble shapes, pre-existing material

Tools and techniques
: standard software tools eg free hand draw, rotate, flip, crop, group/ungroup, resize; special effects eg soften, sharpen, watermark, invert; colour eg colour balance, colour depth eg 8-bit (256 colours), 16-bit (64,000 colours); layering; advanced techniques eg 3D images, masking

Editing graphics
: change an existing image
You have set up as a freelance graphics designer and received financial investment from the owner of a small chain of stores.
The owner has commissioned you to produce a flyer advertising the products that can be used for pushing through letterboxes.
The flyer must contain;
1. at least three photographs of products on special offer
2. Maps showing where the stores are located
3. an overall colour scheme using the shops two colours
4. telephone, email and website contact information for the stores.
LO4: Be able to create and modify graphic images to meet user requirements

Graphic creation:
image eg scanning, importing, digital camera; image creation eg free hand draw, assemble shapes, pre-existing material

Tools and techniques
: standard software tools eg free hand draw, rotate, flip, crop, group/ungroup, resize; special effects eg soften, sharpen, watermark, invert; colour eg colour balance, colour depth eg 8-bit (256 colours), 16-bit (64,000 colours); layering; advanced techniques eg 3D images, masking

Editing graphics
: change an existing image
P
4
P
3
P
5
1. Modify your flyer as a result of your client feedback - save it as a PDF
2. write a short report on the changes you have made and how they have enhanced your product, discuss how you;
checked it against client need,
against user need;
proofing; image resolution; file formats saved in.
LO4: Be able to create and modify graphic images to meet user requirements
M
2
Create a section with annotated screenshots to
justify
the software, tools, file format, image resolution and colour depth used for creating your graphic images
LO4: Be able to create and modify graphic images to meet user requirements
D
2

Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
File format
Compression techniques
Image resolution
Colour depth
Photoshop .PSD
'working file' -
no loss in quality
every time you open and close it
Supports all of the photoshop functions
file size can become quite large - especially if you have a file that has a lot of layers
How big is your .psd file? note this down...
JPEG
Most popular file format as it can support up to 24 bit colour depth. Roughly 16.7 million colours.

Not actually a file 'type' but a file compression scheme. 'Lossy' compression scheme.

It compresses the images. Every time the file is opened and resaved some of the data is lost - permanently. The more you open and resave the lower the quality becomes.

You control the amount of compression being applied to the file using the quality setting that appears in Photoshop when you go to save it. A high enough quality setting can still produce great looking images but your file size will be larger. Lower quality settings can produce very small file sizes, but set too low and you'll introduce ugly and obvious compression features
GIF
what is your jpeg file size?
The file type of choice for 'Web Graphics' - not photos - it can only display up to 256 colours - millions less than is supported by the jpeg
well suited to logos, banner, buttons etc (things that need solid colour)
Supports transparency
Try saving your image as a
.gif - What happens to the quality and the file size?
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
.PNG
Improves upon the .gif and the jpeg format

'lossless' file format - even though it compresses images it does not loose the quality
PNG files support up to 48-bit color, giving us more than 1 billion possible colors!
You can re-save the same PNG file multiple times without degrading its quality, whereas JPEG files look worse each time you re-save them.
it can reproduce a
full 256 levels of transparency
compared with GIF's single level, giving us smooth transitions around edges without having to worry about matching the edges with the background color.
PNG files are also usually smaller than GIF files what is your image size when saved as .png?
not all browsers support them :(
Compression techniques are used to reduce the disk size of a file. File size is important if the file is to be transmitted to another location or if there is only a small amount of storage space and the file size needs to be reduced in size to fit.
Lossless compression - allows the original image to be rebuilt from the compressed (reduced - size) image
Lossy compression - does not allow the original image to be rebuilt from the compressed (reduced - size) image
Lossy file types - GIF, JPEG (has a big compressing ration, reducing the quality of the image, it is ideal for big images and photographs. The compression rate can be altered)
Lossless - PNG (very good for images with big areas of one unique color, or with small variations of color.)
EXPERIMENT WITH ONE OF YOUR IMAGES WHAT HAPPENS TO THE QUALITY AND FILE SIZE?
Nothing to do with how your image looks on the screen but everything to do with how it prints
3456x2304= 7,962,624 pixels
Taken with an 8 mp camera (million)
3456 divided by 72 = 48
2304 divided by 72 = 32
It's how many if your image's pixels will print inside every inch of paper, which then tells us how large the image will be when it's printed.
Experiment with your own image - what happens to the file size? what happens to the quality?
what happens to the file size of the other formats?
Photoshop is colour blind!
Colour depth is the number of bits used by the graphics system to hold the colour of each pixel on the screen.
1 bit =2
red 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2 = 256
green 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2 = 256
blue 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2 = 256
256x256x256 = 16.8 million possible colors.
And it's all because the 16-bit version has such a tremendous amount of possible colors available at its disposal
Even after an edit as drastic as adjusting the levels, there isn't even the slightest dent in the quality of the image due to it being in 16-bit mode
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
Discuss the
impact
that file format, compression techniques, image resolution and colour depth have on
file size and image quality
D
2
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