Turning a bitmap into a vector in CorelDraw

Enlarging a bitmap makes visible scattered pixels in it. Tracing it, in addition to getting rid of pixels, will give the opportunity to work separately with each of the objects that will be contained in the resulting vector image. The quality of the picture will be much higher. Consider how to make a vector image in Korela.

Ways to turn a raster pattern into a vector in CorelDraw.

Manual tracing

If you have a photo as the source image, then drawing it into a vector will be problematic. This is usually done with drawings, graphics, logos or the like.

Scan (photo) - Import

First of all, the picture (picture) needs to be scanned (photographed) and imported (File / Import) into the program. Sometimes the original image must be seriously increased - to achieve the identification of small nuances. This is depending on the circumstances. Some believe that it is more convenient to work with a locked object with a picture. This can be done by selecting the command with the Lock Object Lock from the right mouse menu.


Further, using the “Bezier curve” tool, they start creating node reference points along the entire contour line. To edit badly resulting nodes, you can undo an action or edit it using ShapeTool. The “Curve” indicator in the “Curve” tab in the “Object Properties” has a “Close Curve” indicator flag - it is needed to get information about the closedness of the contour (for subsequent filling). After contouring:

After you finish working with contours, you can remove the scanned image from the working image for a better estimate. To do this, call Unlock Object and drag the contour image to the side.


Now the selected parts (closed) can be filled (painted) with paint, choosing the color with the left mouse (or changing it), and adjusting the contours with the right mouse.


In order for the character to look more interesting, he is given a game of chiaroscuro. This is usually done using the Bezier tool.

And you can: copy the hand twice, give the top copy a left offset, select both fragments, activate the Back minus front command in the Property Bar. You will get a shadow for which you need to choose a darker compared to the main color. Creating a glare is similar, but is painted in a lighter color.

After the game with light and shade it remains to portray the falling shadow of the entire object. Ellipse tool is applied to the pattern oval. Drop Shadow creates a drop in shadow, the characteristics of which are regulated in the Property Bar.

Now you need to remove the oval. Open the Object Manager tool in Windows / Dockers, activate the oval-shadow group in the figure with the right mouse, select Break Drop Shadow. It remains only to remove the unwanted oval and place the shadow in the right place.

Automatic tracing

Although the majority of manual tracing for some reason is considered convenient, in practice, the same majority use the automatic one. And this is understandable: it is one thing to talk about work, and another thing to do it. There are several applications for this.


First, the bitmap is highlighted, the Trace Bitmap command is selected on the properties panel. Then a separately launched application window CorelTrace will provide an opportunity for further processing of the specified image.

Tracing is started with the To Trace command from the top menu. If the visible result in the workspace (right) does not meet the expectations, you can try to improve it qualitatively.

Play around with the value of the Accuracy cell by moving the slider. This value is determined by the trace clarity. Note that increasing it will lead to the creation of more vector objects (sometimes up to several thousand). And this will require additional processor power, memory (and / or time).

It is possible to select tracing methods using the buttons in the left section of the worksheet menu:

  • For example, when you click Scetch and then activate Outline (above), a sketch of the abundance of intersecting lines will be created.
  • If you select Advansed Outline, you will be taken to advanced tracing settings. Then additional fields will be reflected at the top to improve the adjustments.

After finishing a vector drawing, to return to CorelDraw, you need to exit CorelTrace using the File / Exit command. The work of the tracer will be completed, and the vector result will be transferred to Korel and placed above the raster one. To see it again (raster), you need to move to the side of the newly created image.


If the CorelTrace utility existed as a separate application, then PowerTrace is already built into CorelDraw X5.

Here, the result of the autotrace is already quite decent quality.

It presents the following types (choice in the Type of image set):

  • for black and white sketches - Line art;
  • emblems, signs with a minimum of details and colors - Logo;
  • emblems, signs with deep detail - Detailed logo;
  • variable detail sketches - Clipart;
  • for photos with minor details - Low quality image;
  • photos with important details - High quality image.

The Preview Selection List allows you to select the most convenient version of the working window. The Before and after option will show both images at the same time to evaluate the differences. The number of points (nodes) and the softening of curved lines is controlled by the Smoothing slider, the detailing is Detail. The color scheme for the picture is determined by the Colors tab and the Color Mode set, and their number in the Numbers of colors cell.

Now you know how to draw a vector from a picture in CorelDraw. With this technology, professional compositions are obtained that can be used not only for personal purposes.

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