Why is moving from a raster editor to vector editor so hard?

Why do so many people struggle with the shift from a pixel editor to a vector editor? Or do they, is there some research done on the subject? Especially, it seems, in that direction. Seem like the opposite direction (vector to image editor) is not nearly as painful.

Are there any known, possibly researched, methods to facilitate the migration? How do you make the transition as painless as possible? Is there something one commonly needs to unlearn to be successful?


I cant reference hard studies. Just some subjective thoughts that become too long for a comment.

I recently started learning/playing with ink dip pens. Quite a different experience, I’m much more comfortable with a brush or pencil in my hand. I think going from ink to paint or paint to ink you have a similar learning barrier. The ink & pen even makes familiar paper feel different.

Pixel format is very natural for any graphic artist. It has a canvas with width & height, I can set it to the dimensions of my paper if I like. I can have layers, which are like layers of paper. I draw a line, pixels get coloured. I smudge a line, pixels get smudged or feathered.

Vector format, its in the name, it uses vector points. Artist goes: “oh yeah vector, I know, those things my math teacher was talking about while I drew a donkey”. To achieve a line, I need two vector points, that are unified, with a stroke turned on and fill off. Want a curvy line, easy, the vector points get turned into bezier control points. “I need a layer”, yep just group them, that makes a layer, the whole asset is a series of nested groups/layers…

My point is, conceptually pencil and paper is a lot closer to pixels on canvas, than vectors in relative space.

Personally I found illustrator more exciting, being able to create simplified outlines, that’ll be sharp on any device, printed at any size. Perhaps if you’re teaching people who are more interested in concept art they’ll find illustrator dull. Which is fair enough.

Source : Link , Question Author : joojaa , Answer Author : Lex

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