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A Guide to Using Stock Vector Images In Your Online and Offline Projects

CreativeGraphic DesignSkillsHow-to

What are stock vector graphics?

Vectors are digital graphics made of simple geometric shapes, lines, and curves—also called vector primitives. Each element’s point of coordinates is described by a mathematical formula. To create vector graphics, you must be familiar with basic drawing skills and master specialized vector-based software. Or, you can search for ready-made vector illustrations created by other digital artists on accessible internet sources.


Vector graphics have unique properties that can simplify your design workflow significantly. First, vectors are scalable, meaning you can enlarge or compress them without quality loss as often as needed. For example, you can implement vector graphics in a small banner on a website or a large advertisement billboard while your picture quality remains the same and the visual doesn’t get pixelated.


Second, vectors are also easily editable, allowing designers to customize parts of the graphics. For example, you can adapt an image to corporate branding by changing colors, eliminating or duplicating shapes, or making lines bolder. Finally, vector graphics have a small file size in comparison to raster images. This feature is essential for SEO managers striving to optimize their web sources. Small file size facilitates increasing a website’s loading speed.

Common vector file formats

There are several formats of vector graphics; some of them are multifunctional, meaning a file can be opened in different vector-based software, while others are compatible with a particular graphics editor.


The most common vector file formats are:


  • AI—is a vector format specifically developed for performing in Adobe Illustrator, allowing creators to deliver good quality, scalable visuals. The AI format reflects the Adobe Illustrator version it was created in. Therefore, files made in newer software cannot always be opened in older versions.


  • SVG—is a multifunctional vector format based on XML. SVG is compatible with all browsers, so designers often use these files to develop responsive and appealing web projects.


  • EPS—is a vector image format that can be processed by most vector-based graphics editors like Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, and Adobe FreeHand. This file type provides precise graphic element quality, and is extensively utilized in the publishing industry to create illustrations for magazines, books, newspapers, pamphlets, and other printed materials.


  • PDF—is a versatile file format that can contain textual and graphic information, including vector illustrations. It was developed by Adobe as an integral format for electronic document storage, sharing, and presentation.


  • CDR—is a vector graphics format native to CorelDRAW. This format is mainly used for creating logos and detailed illustrations. Just like AI, the CDR file is connected to the CorelDRAW software version, meaning you can’t process newer files in the older software.
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Vectors are digital graphics made of simple geometric shapes, lines, and curves—also called vector primitives

Where can you use stock vector graphics?

  • Online and offline advertising materials. You can develop eye-catching promotional campaigns for your business. Vector graphics can be utilized for creating marketing banners, flyers, business cards, and social media covers. Regardless of your material size, image quality remains high.


  • Web designs. Vector graphics allow digital creators to develop responsive online projects, visible on screens of all sizes. Moreover, vector is a preferable format for creating logos and icons. You can make sharp and accurate-looking vector logos and icons, easily customize their graphic elements (color, shape, outline), and implement them in different projects and sizes. To drive a website’s interactivity using vector images, create simple animated scenes, e.g., a hover effect for a button.


  • Mobile application interfaces. Modern design principles are based on interactivity and straightforward element perception. Hand-drawn digital illustrations are preferable graphics for mobile interfaces, driving customer engagement and encouraging them to take action.


  • As users perceive vector graphics more easily, you can use them to illustrate complex information that contains charts and big numbers. Moreover, you can quickly customize your infographics to your brand style due to vector editability.
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Where to download free stock vectors

Aspiring designers often search for vectors on accessible internet sources. However, they may find the file downloads as a raster. That’s why professional creators search for vector images on stock content marketplaces. These platforms offer vast design material libraries and thematic collections, allowing creators to find relevant, licensed visuals for their personal and commercial projects quickly.


Depositphotos is an international stock content library featuring 54+ million royalty-free vector graphics and illustrations. When browsing the platform, you can find HD photos, clip art, icons, infographics, music, and videos to enrich your personal and commercial projects with striking design materials. Digital creators can explore featured collections and trendy categories by a particular topic. Moreover, you can sort suggested files using the advanced search filtering system. The Search by Image tool lets you find similar, licensed content by analyzing an uploaded reference picture.


How can you find and download stock vector images on Depositphotos?


  1. Go to and create a free account.
  2. Enter your query into the search box and start browsing.
  3. Look through suggested images and apply additional search filters if needed.
  4. Find the illustration that suits your needs.
  5. Click on the picture, choose the file format, and download the vector graphic onto your device.

Bottom line

Vector graphics are excellent design material due to their scalability, editability, and small size. You can use vectors in online and offline projects, creating advertising campaigns, web designs, mobile application interfaces, and infographics. Beginner and professional designers can speed up the search process by browsing and downloading vector graphics on stock content marketplaces.

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