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Can I get rid of small white spaces after tracing?

Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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I don't think I can attach a file here, so I will try to describe the issue.

I traced a pretty photo-realistic portrait. The result is good. But there are lots of small white dots or areas throughout the trace output. I figures that I should try and join surrounding areas but I get an error messages. I also tried gap options in live paint, but that doesn't seem to do the trick (perhaps I am not using it well, newbie here).

It occurs to me that unless I am not using the join tool or the gap options properly, which is perfectly possible, the reason these are not having the desired effect is that all those white areas are not defined areas at all but very small gaps. Could that be the case? So there's no point trying to "close" them, or join them, or pick them with the selection tool to fill them with colour, or to do that in Live Paint, because there is just nothing there. It's just gaps showing (in white because the background artboard is white). Could that be the case?

I am not sure why those gaps occur in tracing. And since they are distributed over many areas in which the colours differ, I can't place a colour background between the artboard and the traced output, as this will make all the gaps the same colour.

Have you come across a similar problem before and if so, would you be able to tell me if I can deal with it (during or after tracing) or if I have to live with it?

Thanks a lot

Best regards

Chris

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Myra Ferguson | Adobe Community Professional

If you still need a technique for touching up the white parts after trying other trace settings, you could use the Blob brush (Shift +B). Select sections with the Direct Selection tool then switch to the Blob Brush. It paints with fills. Use Ctrl (Command on a Mac) to temporarily switch between the Blob brush and the Direct Selection tool while the Blob brush is selected. When you select a new shape, the Blob brush will automatically use that shape's fill as the color. It could still take a while, but it's one way you could move around the image and touch it up.

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Can I get rid of small white spaces after tracing?

Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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I don't think I can attach a file here, so I will try to describe the issue.

I traced a pretty photo-realistic portrait. The result is good. But there are lots of small white dots or areas throughout the trace output. I figures that I should try and join surrounding areas but I get an error messages. I also tried gap options in live paint, but that doesn't seem to do the trick (perhaps I am not using it well, newbie here).

It occurs to me that unless I am not using the join tool or the gap options properly, which is perfectly possible, the reason these are not having the desired effect is that all those white areas are not defined areas at all but very small gaps. Could that be the case? So there's no point trying to "close" them, or join them, or pick them with the selection tool to fill them with colour, or to do that in Live Paint, because there is just nothing there. It's just gaps showing (in white because the background artboard is white). Could that be the case?

I am not sure why those gaps occur in tracing. And since they are distributed over many areas in which the colours differ, I can't place a colour background between the artboard and the traced output, as this will make all the gaps the same colour.

Have you come across a similar problem before and if so, would you be able to tell me if I can deal with it (during or after tracing) or if I have to live with it?

Thanks a lot

Best regards

Chris

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Myra Ferguson | Adobe Community Professional

If you still need a technique for touching up the white parts after trying other trace settings, you could use the Blob brush (Shift +B). Select sections with the Direct Selection tool then switch to the Blob Brush. It paints with fills. Use Ctrl (Command on a Mac) to temporarily switch between the Blob brush and the Direct Selection tool while the Blob brush is selected. When you select a new shape, the Blob brush will automatically use that shape's fill as the color. It could still take a while, but it's one way you could move around the image and touch it up.

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May 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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Please show.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Hi Monika,

How? I can't attach an AI file...

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May 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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Take a screen shot and post that.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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I'll try. I did try before but it didn't show with a normal screenshot because the white gaps are very small. I'll have to make it very large. Will do that in a minute.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Screen Shot 05-04-18 at 03.43 PM.PNG

It hadly show on here. You can see a few white dots. In reality, there are many more.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Try this one

Screen Shot 05-04-18 at 03.46 PM.PNG

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May 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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What do you have for the Noise setting? Try upping that until the white specks go away.

Otherwise, you might clean it up in Photoshop first.

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May 04, 2018 1
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Hi jane-e,

Well, that's the problem. I first cut out the shape in photoshop. Even at 500% it does not show any white dots. There's nothing to clean up. I can clean up the traced output in photoshop, but tat defeats the purpose of doing a vector version.

As for the noise settings, I tried just about everything: low, medium and 100%. No deal.

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May 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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Try if View > Preview on CPU solves it

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May 04, 2018 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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Did you use the Magic Wand to make the selection? If so, it didn't select the pixels that are a different color and it left holes in your selection. You need to have a selection without holes in Photoshop.

In Photoshop:

Make the selection. If you saved your selection before, reload it.

Go to Quick Mask "Q"

Type "D" to put your colors on Black and White

Use the Paintbrush to paint the selection in where those pixels are missing. "X" switches between the foreground and background colors.

Exit Quick Mask "Q" to return to a Selection.

You can also paint in a saved selection, aka Channel.

To test your selection in PS, move it with the move tool. If it leave pixels behind, you have holes. Then undo.

If you need more help with this, ask in the Photoshop forum. Your problem will be solved when you don't have the holes before you leave Photoshop!

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May 04, 2018 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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I tried duplicating what you've done with a similar portrait and got a similar result. The bottom line, I believe, is that Image Trace, even at its highest settings does not deliver a perfect representation of the original art. However, I did find a quick workaround that should fill all of your gaps rather quickly. Take the traced image and put it on a separate layer and lock that. Then create a new layer and put it below the image layer. Create a shape that encompasses all of the areas that have white gaps and fill it with a color (in your case a brown shade) that is similar enough to the general tone of the painting. Your gaps are so small that the human eye should now see it without any gaps at all.

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May 04, 2018 1
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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@jan-e

No, I used select and mask. I did test it. No holes...

That being said, the selection is not perfect. I wonder if I am not better off tracing he whole picture and doing the cutting out in Illustrator. I need to trace it again anyway: the pipe is all crooked.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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820507 CUTOUT.pngI did mention that possibility, but I have two problems implementing it. The first is that you see in my elarged screenshot only a small proportion of the image. Other white gaps span very different colours. But I can deal with that. But what I don't know how to do then, is to output the whole thing as a single AI file that doesn't spill over the original cutout shape.That's just me not knowing something which is probably basic.

I'll show you the full picture. All the white space is in fact transparent in reality.

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May 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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Try to check this option when making Image Trace it may solve it:

Capture.JPG

and also make sure that you turned off the [ GPU Performance ]

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May 04, 2018 2
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Hi Omar. I did try that while I was tracing. It is much better on the setting you recommend, but that was not the cause of the white spaces. As Bill said, he reproduces the issue with a similar picture, and it might well be an artifact of the TRace in certain circumstances or levels of complexity...not sure.

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New Here ,
Oct 06, 2020

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Thank you. This worked for me 

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Oct 06, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 04, 2018

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If you still need a technique for touching up the white parts after trying other trace settings, you could use the Blob brush (Shift +B). Select sections with the Direct Selection tool then switch to the Blob Brush. It paints with fills. Use Ctrl (Command on a Mac) to temporarily switch between the Blob brush and the Direct Selection tool while the Blob brush is selected. When you select a new shape, the Blob brush will automatically use that shape's fill as the color. It could still take a while, but it's one way you could move around the image and touch it up.

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May 04, 2018 0
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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Hello Myra,

Thanks a lot for the suggestion. I will let you know how that works out, but nice again, thanks to people in this community, I learn something new every time I ask a question. Let's go blob away...

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May 04, 2018 1
Participant ,
May 04, 2018

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And Mr Blobby wins the day.

Fantastic tool when you don't have a clue what you're doing. Easy to use in this case because I don't actually have to select anything, since the white gaps are actually empty. So just the colour picker and the blob tool is enough. Thank you very much Myra.

That being said, as Bill suggests, TRace seems to have inherent limitations (not major ones though) and I will revisit all the other suggestions you made with settings to see if there is a combination that alleviates the problem.

Thank you everyone.

Best regards

Chris

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May 04, 2018 3