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CorelDRAW is the most popular graphics programs in the awards and personalization industry. Learn about the difference between PNG and JPEG files; turning a customer’s low-quality artwork into a masterpiece; welding, trimming, and combining shapes; and more!

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Recently I received a call from Ken and Sue, a husband-and-wife team from Tennessee who were facing a unique challenge. They needed to modify a black and white illustration of a vintage aircraft so that it could be lasered on whiskey bottles destined for a museum fundraiser. The challenge? The aircraft in the foreground of the image was in shades of gray similar to the background, making it difficult to visually separate some parts of the airplane from the background. To compound the issue, the image needed to be converted to a halftone, which further reduced the definition between the plane and the background.
In the November issue of Recognition Review, I discussed the process for saving JPEG files from either CorelDRAW or Corel PHOTO-PAINT. If you got the impression that I’m not a big fan of JPEG, you are correct. While it is typically the best way to put a photograph on the web, it’s pretty lousy for most everything else. Sadly, it is popular, and most users don’t realize there is a better format.
Recently I was contacted by a CorelDRAW user who wanted to create a unique picture frame with the name of a person at the bottom. FIGURE 1 is a picture of what was desired. I’ll go through the steps required to create this type of artwork in CorelDRAW so that it can be cut/etched on a laser engraver. Even if you don’t have to create this type of project or even use a laser engraver, the process can be transferred to a wide variety of projects.
When it comes to fashion, my age and Midwestern roots keep me behind the trends. I rely on my wife’s sense of style to help keep me in current clothing—within a decade or so. It is difficult, however, not to notice the ever-increasing trend for customized accessories. Personalized items are becoming more the rule than the exception. And when the weather turns cold, there are still sublimation options for customization!
About 14 years ago, my brother-in-law paid more than $100 to have his handwriting converted into a typeface or “font.” At that time, the concept was fairly new and there were few services available. I wish I knew then what I know now.
As a CorelDRAW expert, I teach users the ins and outs of the program through websites, one-on-one training, live seminars, and more. I led seminars at January’s International Awards Market which let me interact with a lot of CorelDRAW users. One of the great things about being at a trade show is helping to solve the problems these users are having. Some of the solutions require a detailed explanation while others are quite simple.
The projects we all tackle may be quite different, but one commonality is that we are often provided with low-quality artwork that needs to be rebuilt. Recently I worked on just such a project where a number of techniques in CorelDRAW and Corel PHOTO-PAINT were used to create the result. I’m going to go through each of those techniques in this article. You may not have the need to create a boxshot as in my project, but the techniques could be quite helpful in many of your projects.
Rarely is there a day when I don’t get a question from a CorelDRAW user wanting to solve a particular problem. This month I’m going to address three of those questions and the solutions. Keep in mind that there are often multiple solutions to any situation and sometimes the best solution may involve using other software.
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