I have placed a SVG logo in my InDesign doc. It is completely white. I selected to edit in Illustrator, as I want to change the white to yellow.

I've tried edit colours and the 'recolour artwork' option is greyed out, or if it lets me do it, it does nothing to the artwork.

I swear this can't be that difficult – it's SVG and I only want to change from white to yellow.

Please can anyone help, I've been trying for hours :(

See the file here

  • The SVG contains a raster image, not vectors. Illustrator can't edit raster images. Use a raster image editor instead.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Mar 26, 2022 at 0:16
  • Thanks everyone. The original image was made in illustrator. This is it: drive.google.com/file/d/1OT6U0Zn4mwLgJhCvBVX0C71Cd6HXtKqi/… Some questions: 1 What is the best way to change all the yellow to a different colour and keep the background transparent? 2. Is this file a vector? 3. I'm having a nightmare with alignment - the inner yellow border that touches the geometric circles, is for some reason appearing thicker in some places and thinner in others (see where Ive circled in red) - can you help me? I cant understand why :(:( Commented Mar 30, 2022 at 13:35

1 Answer 1


As already said by others, the logo is a bitmap (=raster) image packed inside a file which can contain as well vector and bitmap images.

After removing the clipping masks in your file in Illustrator a white logo with transparent background appeared. To make it yellow use either Photoshop or GIMP which both allow recoloring bitmap images without losing the transparency. The image is in RGB mode. Know that GIMP doesn't make CMYK color files, you need Photoshop or other CMYK-capable image editor if a file with CMYK colors is needed (see NOTE2).

Another possibility is to use it as Opacity Mask for an yellow rectangle in Illustrator:

enter image description here

To get a CMYK version proceed in CMYK Illustrator document and use a rectangle with CMYK yellow. Export the result as high resolution CMYK mode *.PSD or TIF (to be placed in Indesign). You do not lose the quality because the image was already rasterized.

The non-flattened PSD export contains a solid yellow layer and the logo will become its layer mask. A flattened PSD export has a single layer. The background is still transparent.

NOTE1: A bitmap image is not the best possible format for logos because it loses its sharpness if scaled. Your image fortunately is about 1200 px wide, so one could print it acceptably as 10 cm wide or smaller. If you need a bigger size check if you find a way to get a vector version.

It's possible that you cannot get the original vector version (=paths, maybe also text objects and Illustrator's effects, but no bitmap image content) into your hands. In that case you may wonder how to turn the existing logo bitmap to a vector. Saving the AI file doesn't make it - the logo stays as bitmap, no matter which file format you try.

In theory you can trace the logo in Illustrator. It converts the bitmap to vector, but the result probably will be poor. You will see rounded corners and other unwanted twists which need so many manual fixes that as well you redraw the whole image as vector.

NOTE2: RGB colors could be converted to CMYK even in the print PDF, but the result may only resemble the original distantly, if there's bright unprintable RGB colors. People pay the premium to Adobe because their programs (when used properly) can pretend the printed result as one makes the layout.

ADD in May 2022: GIMP 2.10 understands CMYK print profiles, it can show the CMYK printing result and can show a warning if something is unprintable (=out of gamut) in CMYK. This all is availabe in the real time when one edits his RGB image in GIMP. The actual conversion to CMYK must still be done outside GIMP, for ex. in Krita, if one wants to use Freeware.

  • Thank you so much. I think i originally exported this from illustrator as an svg as i thought that was a vector? How do i export a vector from illustrator? Commented Mar 26, 2022 at 21:25
  • @user3049063 illustrator will export everything it can as vectors. Thing is though just because you have a illustrator file likewise does not gurantee it was originally vectors. Vector files can include bitmaps. But in reality you allways store originals, in this case you could go back to original to see what it was originally.
    – joojaa
    Commented Mar 27, 2022 at 10:11
  • Mainly this problem arises because people think the division is raster vs vector while in fact vector images are page descriptions. So vectors is the top category which includes raster images.
    – joojaa
    Commented Mar 27, 2022 at 12:54
  • @user3049063 Exporting a raster image from Illustrator to an SVG won't make it vector. It will just embed the raster image in the SVG. SVGs can contain both raster and vector images. You can't just export a raster image as vector. It's not possible. You could auto trace it, or recreate it manually of course. Unfortunately it's too low resolution to get a good auto trace.
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Mar 28, 2022 at 20:48

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