I have been fighting with Adobe Illustrator for the past few days with an extremely annoying problem.
I had a graphic that needed to be converted from a .png file format into a vector format. You can do this through Adobe Illustrator with the Image Trace function that you can find under the Window Tab menu. There are several Advanced options that you can fiddle around with until you get the look you want from your image. When you are happy with the look of your art, you click on Expand, and your picture is converted into vector art that you can manipulate.
The problem that I was running into was that I had a picture that had a lot of white in it. The picture was basically black and white. When you bring a picture into the Image Trace, the background is all white. To get rid of this white background, you click on “Ignore White” in the Image Trace options, and this gets rid of that annoying white background. The problem that happens, however, is that it also gets rid of the white in the picture that you want to preserve. I was stuck with an outlined transparent picture, which was useless.
After pulling out my hair for more time than I’d like to admit, I finally found a solution. What you do is, you do NOT click “Ignore White” in the Image Trace options when you are tracing your image. You leave all of the annoying white background in place. Then when you bring your traced vector image into whatever your are going to do with it, you have to go into your paths, find the annoying background paths on yours layers stack, and click the “eyeballs” so that you no longer see those specific paths. When I was searching the internet for a solution, I saw someone had written that you just delete the parts of the white that you don’t want. It’s not that simple. If you click on the white that you don’t want and delete it, your whole picture is going to delete. You have to go into your paths and hunt down the specific places where your offending white portions are and turn them off. You can’t actually delete them. Once I found this out, problem solved. PHEW! What a pain!!!
REVISION: OK, I feel kind of like a dolt for not figuring this part out. I seem to feel like a dolt a lot of the time I am working with Illustrator. You can delete your white sections. It won’t delete the whole thing. What you have to do so that it won’t delete your entire image is you have to select your image, then Ungroup it. After doing this, you will be able to select the individual white path sections and delete them. I don’t know why this didn’t occur to me before. D’oh!