I was going with what the original poster mentioned, assuming the customer
was specifying JPEG. I recently ran into this issue and am not having any
problems with the Illustrator-to-JPEG graphics.

Personally, I would opt for GIF, but not from Illustrator. I would export
the Illustrator file to Photoshop and then use Photoshop to create the GIG.
I have run into too many issues with GIFs from Illustrator.

-----Original Message-----
[mailto:framers-bounces at] On Behalf Of Fred Ridder
Sent: Wednesday, May 06, 2009 9:50 AM
To: generic668 at; framers at
Subject: RE: OT: Technical illustrations - Outlining a line drawing

Responding to Nadine, David Spreadbury wrote:

> Since you said that you have Illustrator available. Open the SolidWorks
> in Illustrator. Illustrator should recognize it as a vector image.
> In Illustrator, select the objects you want and increase the line width to
> the desired thickness.
> Export it as JPEG and you should have what you are looking for.

That's the same advice I was going to offer--right up to the last step.
Exporting to JPEG is the worst of all possible options. 

The best advice is to use the PDF directly in the FrameMaker file. Using PDF
graphics in a FrameMaker document has almost no compromises. The graphic is
fully scalable with no loss of quality since it is still in vector form. It
prints perfectly, and the on-screen display is excellent (EPS prints fine,
but uses an ugly, low-res bitmap rendering for on-screen display).

Next best would be to export to EPS, EMF, or WMF, since all of those are
vector formats which allow the image to be rescaled witout loss of quality.

Next in line would be exporting to PNG or GIF or TIFF, all of which are
raster image formats. These are fixed-resolution formats which do compromise
scalability, but other than freezingf the resolution they are lossless.

Last on the list would be JPEG, which is an inherently lossy format that was
designed specifically for *photographic* images where the properties of the
image conceal the image degradation and artifacts that are inevitably
produced by the format's area-based image compression algorithm. JPEG is
particularly ill-suited for line art or images containing text because it
produces artifacts (a kind of gray smudginess) surrounding letters in text
or alongside lines in a drawing.

-Fred Ridder


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