During vector conversation process, color changes occurs due to the conversion of color modes or spaces. As vector conversion experts, we understand the different color modes and color spaces and how they can affect the outcome of your final printed image or design.

In this article, we will discuss the difference color modes, color changes issue and the ways to convert an image into grayscale and grayscale into indexed color in Adobe Illustrator during vector conversion.

What are the Basic Color Mode for Vector Conversion?

There are different color spaces that are used in printing purposes and computer graphics, including RGB, CMYK, Grayscale, Index Mode, and Bitmap Mode.

Each color space has its unique way of representing color, and color changes can occur when converting between color spaces, namely:

  1. RGB Color Mode.
  2. CMYK Color Mode.
  3. Grayscale Color Mode.
  4. Index Color Mode.
  5. Bitmap Color Mode.

Here we are explaining the every individual one in detail

RGB Color Mode:

RGB (red, green, blue) is an extensive color model for digital images and displays. In this color space, colors are created by adding different intensities of red, green, and blue light. RGB is ideal for designing graphics for screens and the web because it has a vast color space to display various colors.

AI uses the RGB color mode to assign an intensity value to each pixel. This standard mode uses three primary colors to represent colors on computer monitors. If you are working in a different mode, such as CMYK, Adobe Illustrator will convert it to RGB for display, and its mode can be adjusted in the Color Settings dialog box.

CMYK Color Mode:

CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black) is a subtractive color model used for print. Unlike RGB, CMYK subtracts color from white light, creating colors by removing varying levels of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black ink. CMYK has a narrower color gamut than RGB, so some colors may shift or become less vibrant when converting an RGB image to CMYK.

In CMYK mode, each pixel is assigned a percentage value of each process color. Some process colors are given to the brightest (highlight) colors. Use CMYK mode when preparing images for printing in process colors.

Converting an RGB image to CMYK creates a color separation. Still, you can also use CMYK for work directly with your scanned images from high-end systems, and the final result may vary depending on the press and printing conditions.

Grayscale Color Mode

Grayscale mode employs several shades of grey in an image. There can be up to 256 hues of grey in 8-bit graphics, and the brightness value of grayscale ranges from 0 (black) to 255 (white) for each pixel. The number of hues in an image is substantially more significant in 16- and 32-bit images than in 8-bit ones.

Grayscale values can also be expressed as a percentage of black ink coverage (0% = white, 100% = black).

The grayscale mode takes advantage of the range the working space setting provides in the Color Settings dialogue box

Index Color Mode:

Indexed Colour mode generates 8-bit pictures with 256 colors. Photoshop creates a color lookup table (CLUT) that stores and indexes the image’s colors. Indexed color minimizes file size while maintaining visual quality for multimedia presentations, web pages, etc.

For significant editing, switch to RGB mode. Color index files can be saved in BMP, GIF, Photoshop, EPS DICOM, etc. Converting colors between color spaces can result in color shifts or vibrancy loss due to gamut differences

Bitmap Color Mode:

In Bitmap color mode, you can use only two color values (Black or White) to show the pixels of the image. Also, Bitmap color mode is called 1-bit because a bitmap image has a bit depth of 1.

How to convert an image into a greyscale mode?

There are three ways to convert an image into a greyscale mode in Adobe Illustration, but here we define the easiest and the most convenient way.

  • To convert a colored image into a greyscale mode,
  • Choose the photo which you want to convert into black and white and open it in Adobe Illustrator.
  • Choose image/photo > Mode > Greyscale.
  • Click > Discard
  • Photoshop converts the color of that image and replaces that color with black, white, and shades of grey.

How to convert an image into any color mode?

To convert an image/ photo into any color mode of color (which we stated earlier) in Adobe Illustrator, all you have to do is follow these simple instructions:

  • Choose the selected image which you want to convert into any mode of color.
  • Select Image/ photo > Mode (select the mode which you want to convert from the submenu)
  • In the menu, modes that are not available for the active image are dimmed.
  • Because these modes do not allow layers, images are flattened when converted to Multichannel, Bitmap, or Indexed Colour mode.

How to convert a RGB into indexed color mode?

Converting to indexed colors reduces the number of colors in the image to 256. This is the standard color depth supported by the GIF and PNG-8 formats and many multimedia applications. In addition, this conversion reduces file size by removing color information from the image.

To convert to indexed color, you must start with an 8-bit-per-channel image in either grayscale or RGB mode.

  • Choose image> Mode > Indexed Color.
  • For RGB images, the Indexed Color dialog box is displayed.
  • Select Preview in the Indexed Color dialog box to preview your changes.

Now it specifies conversion options.

Some Final Words

In conclusion, color changes can occur during vector conversion due to differences in color modes and color spaces. Understanding the various color modes and color spaces and using proper color management techniques can help ensure your designs maintain their intended colors throughout the vector conversion process.