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MathGroup Archive 2004

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Re: Mathematica exports curves in pieces to Illustrator

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg45431] Re: Mathematica exports curves in pieces to Illustrator
  • From: AES/newspost <siegman at stanford.edu>
  • Date: Wed, 7 Jan 2004 01:09:37 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <btb8ml$jno$1@smc.vnet.net>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

In article <btb8ml$jno$1 at smc.vnet.net>,
 "David Park" <djmp at earthlink.net> wrote:

> I have often wondered about programs that would take Mathematica plot output
> and allow improvements to be made on the plots. What programs are available,
> what will they do for you and roughly how much do they cost? How well do
> they work with 3D graphics? Are they worth it?
> 
> One of the things I don't like about Mathematica 3D graphics is the poor
> rendering. There are often extra lines and spots that shouldn't appear in
> the graphics. Do programs like Illustrator solve these problems? When I look
> at some of the sample 3D plots on the WRI web site, they look as if they had
> been run through an auxiliary program.

One limiting case is becoming enough of a Mathematica graphics guru to 
create your final, polished, presentation-level graphics output, getting 
everything exactly as you want it, totally in Mathematica.  I find this 
a very difficult, time-consuming, essentially unobtainable goal, even 
with a lot of trying.

The alternative is to do as much as you can readily do in Mathematica 
without too much effort, including some easy things like putting in text 
some labels, converting all text to the fonts you want and various other 
tricks; then export the result as EPS and do final polishing in 
Illustrator.  The start-up costs in this approach include acquiring, 
paying for, and learning how to use Illustrator; and it also means you 
end up maintaining multiple files, i.e. the Mathematic nb that creates 
each graphic, maybe the EPS export, and the touched-up EPS export.  

Once you're past the initial hurdles, however, my view is that this is 
absolutely the way to go.  Important secondary benefits include the 
abilities you acquire to export the touched-up Illustrator images into 
any other formats you want, and in general the solid connection you now 
have to the entire Adobe/PDF/Illustrator/Photoshop worlds (with the 
low-end version, Photoshop Elements, being the


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