How to Vectorize Any Map Part II: Using Illustrator

Turn your favorite places into artistic line drawings tuned to your tastes.

Here by accident? Start with Part I of this design tutorial.

This second part was originally created by Diego Sanchez on Medialoot.

TRACING WORK…

Open up Illustrator! Please click here to proceed to Part II.

STEP ONE: Open Illustrator and create a new file with your desired size. In this case it will BE 1540 pixels by 975 pixels.

Step 2

STEP TWO: Go to File > Place. Locate your screenshot and place this on your Artboard however you see fit. With the screenshot selected, click on the down arrow of the Image Trace button on the top bar, and select ’16 Colors’ from the dropdown menu.

STEP THREE: Before expanding the map, we will make some settings adjustments to get the best result. Go to Window > Image Trace to open the Image Tracing Options Panel.

STEP FOUR: In the Image Trace Panel, set the Paths to 90%, the Corners to 0%, the Noise to 1% and be sure to have the ‘Ignore White’ option checked.

STEP FIVE: Now in the top bar, click on ‘Expand’.

STEP SIX: Go to Object > Ungroup (or right click for this option). Using the Selection Tool (V), click and drag starting outside the Artboard until you reach an empty fill area at the map side.

STEP SEVEN: Go to Select > Same > Fill Color. This will select all the empty areas of our map where it was white. Now: go to Edit > Clear, or simply hit your delete key. This will delete the all the selected empty areas of our map leaving only the fills with the streets from our screenshot.

CONGRATULATIONS!

Enjoy customizing your map however you see fit! Take advantage of the Select > Same > Fill Color technique to quickly edit your color scheme for similar map lines (see below). Great job everyone!