I have been working in illustrator CS5 making vector art. My main focus has been different iPhone game graphics (I make them in illustrator instead of photoshop so I can scale them for all the different devices and tablets) and have been so focused on making the art and learning (at least trying to) lots of different techniques that I overlooked the saving and exporting aspects. So I was hoping if someone would be able to help explain the best practice for rasterizing vector art.

I'm aware of file > save for web and devices and because I'm doing mainly iPhone graphics, I will be saving in PNG24. Is that all there is to it, or are there any tricks or techniques to make the art better or clearer? Because I'm rasterizing vector art, is there anything I need to keep in mind or do when I am actually making the art?

For example, I'm not sure if it would be better to take the vector art into Photoshop as a smart object, and then save it from Photoshop as it is a pixel based programme, maybe it has more options. Is that the case?

  • 1
    By 'pixel art' are you referring to a particular aesthetic (typically what would be called 8-bit graphics) or are you referring to a particular file format (raster based images)?
    – DA01
    Apr 2, 2013 at 0:07
  • I mean raster based images, sorry for the confusion will edit the question to make things clearer. thanks.
    – Hunter
    Apr 2, 2013 at 8:36

1 Answer 1


For many instances simply using Save for Web or Exporting from Illustrator is sufficient.

You may need to take care that you choose the right anti-aliasing option. Often Art Optimized yields the best results.

And working with the Align to Pixel Grid option turned on always helps keep things crisp and smooth.

I only move items to Photoshop if I want to edit the pixels. Sometimes, after exporting, there may be a few pixels which could use a minot color change to help the appearance. I'll then open the image from Illustrator with Photoshop so I can zoom in and hit a pixel or two.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.