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I am working on a trademark that utilizes a leaf. I translated the leaf into a vector shape but need to remove all of the jagged edges and make it smooth. Any suggestions?

leaf

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How did you "translate the leaf into vector"? Are you using the image you posted here? Why not grab the pen tool and draw it? –  Scott Feb 6 '13 at 14:22
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Has the above screenshot been taken in Illustrator? If yes, is the Pixel Preview (View > Pixel Preview) switched on? –  Const Feb 6 '13 at 14:45
    
I dropped in Photoshop image into illustrator – then traced it with auto trace. what I'd like to do is use the type that I'm using to create the shapes that make the leaf. Although, this is beyond my skill level. –  Charles Feb 6 '13 at 15:21
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Sadly - you need to overpaint, there's no easy solution other than that. (use pixel image as background and draw vector shapes on top of it) –  MarcinWolny Feb 6 '13 at 17:01
    
If that image was drawn in Photoshop using the pen tool, it might be possible to export the paths (vectors) from there to Illustrator (File > Export) –  TehMacDawg Feb 6 '13 at 18:28

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As mentioned in the comments, it would be better if you re-drew the shape using the pen tool. This might seem like quite a challenge at first, but it's really not difficult at all, once you do a couple you will find the rest very easy.

This article is part of a series on drawing tools in Illustrator, and it focuses on drawing curved paths. The basic principle is this:

Unlike straight paths, curved paths are created by clicking and dragging. The first time you click and drag, you set a starting point for the curved path and importantly, you also determine the direction of the curve. As you continue to drag, a curved path is drawn between the previous point and the current point.

When you click and drag with the Pen tool, two things happen:

  • An anchor point is placed on the artboard when you click.

  • Direction lines and direction points are drawn when you drag.

You can use the direction lines and points to determine the direction and shape of the curved path you’re drawing.

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this is incredibly helpful. As an aside, if I have a font picked out and I would like to use some of the curves in the letters – is there a best practice to follow? –  Charles Feb 7 '13 at 22:38
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If you insert a text and convert it to curves using "Create Outlines", you will be able to grab the nodes with the "Direct Selection Tool". This will show you the curves. If you need to replicate those curves I'm not sure what the best way is, so it's probably better to ask it as a new question so one of the Illustration gurus around here can help you better :) –  Yisela Feb 7 '13 at 22:47

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