Until now Repper worked exclusively with bitmap images. The big benefit of bitmap is its flexibility: it can store photos, crisp illustrations, textures, fine artwork—you name it. Whatever kind of image you want to create a pattern from, Repper could do it.
Yet the downside is that bitmap images are made of pixels. If you create a pattern from a small sample of your source image, you may start to notice those pesky pixels. One solution is to use very large source images, and that definitely works. But there another solution now...
Harness the power of vector
We have developed a whole new pattern engine in Repper that can turn SVG images into vector patterns. Vector has a number of benefits over bitmaps, which you can read about in a separate blogpost.
Getting started with vector
While the underlying technology is seriously complex (a topic for another blogpost), creating a vector pattern in Repper is straightforward:
- Upload a vector image in SVG format
- Design and export patterns as usual
- There is no step 3 😄
When you upload an SVG image instead of the usual JPG or PNG, Repper will automatically show you the options available for vector patterns (read on to see what currently is/isn't supported). When exporting, you'll see slightly different options, as you'll be exporting back to SVG instead of bitmap.
With great power comes great responsibility
Compared to the "simple" pixel grid of a bitmap image, vector images are a lot more complex. A vector file contains a description of the artwork, which may include things like circles, paths, shapes, groups, strokes, and fills. This means there is a lot more for Repper to handle, and a few ways in which things can break.
I strongly recommend having a look at the Vector support section in our Help Centre. It contains tips on how to prepare your vector file before upload, how to work with vector in Repper, and how to troubleshoot common problems.
This feature is currently in beta
Before releasing, we tested the new vector support with a panel of users. We've made sure that the core functionality is working properly and stable. That said, the "engine" that powers it is a complex piece of technology and we will continue to tune it as more people start using it.
Here are a few limitations you need to be aware of:
- Some SVG features are not supported: Many SVG features are supported (like paths), others are still in development (like gradient), while others will likely never be supported (like embedded bitmap images). You can find a full list here. If you try to upload an image with an unsupported feature, you will see a warning.
- Some tilings are not yet implemented: We are working on making those available in the near future.
- Effects are not supported: Because vector is fundamentally different from bitmap, we will consider which effects to add on a case-by-case basis. While some of the bitmap effects may also be brought to vector patterns, we are also excited to see what kind of powerful effects we could provide you for vector that weren't possible before.
We are very excited to see what kind of vector patterns you will be making. Share your creations with us or let us know how we can further improve vector support by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.