Raster vs vector: you’ve probably heard both terms, so what’s the big difference? Raster graphics are made up of pixels, and vector graphics are composed of fewer points connected by lines.

Raster graphics contain individual pixels, each being a solitary dot that is assigned a place and mix of colors. These dots when viewed as a whole make up the image. They are great for simple online uses, and can be made quickly in programs like Photoshop.  You can also find some great free alternatives to Photoshop online.

A vector graphic, however, is made up of straight and curved lines that are connected and can be filled in with colors. These paths or lines make up the overall larger image. The main advantage of vector images is that they can be resized without losing quality or looking “pixelated”. This is important when you are designing a logo or image that will be utilized across multiple mediums such as in magazines, on business cards and on giant billboards.

Raster Images Vector Images
Larger File Size Smaller File Size
Great for Photos Not Good for Photos
Bad Choice for a Logo Great Choice for Logos
Preferred Format for Web Will be Converted for Web Use
Not Very Resizable Infinitely Resizable Without Issue