Is your digitizer an artist?

I recently ran across a forum where someone was commenting on being charged for digitizing their design they wanted embroidered on a hat......

The post reads:
"I want to get a logo I made on Photoshop onto a blank hat, basically. They told me I need to "digitize" the logo. Naturally, it is already digitized, just not the right format they need.....I shouldn't have to pay a digitizing fee just because they can't read my file."   It then goes on with other comments saying, "it just a matter of opening the file and saving it in the format they need."
(Excuse me while I pull the dagger from my heart.)

I understand that if you aren't in the "industry" you wouldn't know what digitizing really means. I usually get a blank, "huh" look on someone's face when they ask me what I do. But those out there that know you need digitizing for your embroidered designs, I ask you this.....Is your digitizer an artist?

Digitizers should be more than just a person sitting in front of a computer, clicking the mouse to make shapes. They need to be artistic, creative and knowledgeable. If you needed an artist to create an illustration of people, would you accept your artist to hand you a drawing with stick figures on it? I would think not. With this same idea in mind, you should choose a digitizer that looks at their craft as an art form. There is so much more than just making an embroidery file that "looks" like the image you are trying to embroider. More than just tracing the shape of the design. Your digitizer needs to know the medium being used in your project and then transform it into an embroidered work of art. It takes planning..... the sequence the design should run, what kind of stitches need to be used, directions of stitches (and much more technical stuff that I can get into in another blog)......but I feel if you find the right digitizer that has the skill on all of these "technical" aspects AND has that artistic eye, you will achieve the best embroidered design.

Artistic touches like shading, fine detail & stitch direction changes can bring your designs to life.

Artistic touches like shading, fine detail & stitch direction changes can bring your designs to life.

When looking for that artistic digitizer, you have to remember that it is a partnership you are seeking. An investment to help keep your embroidery efficient, quality and most important aesthetically superb. First impressions mean everything when you are speaking about a visual medium. To me, I would want the best representation of my work out there.....and it all starts with digitizing. You embroiderers out there have enough to worry about with the technical side of production.....get yourself a professional digitizing artist that makes your work look impeccable. Yes, these digitizers are usually more expensive than the run-of-the-mill "discount" and "fast" ones out there - but paying for the quality up front, will save a lot of stress in the long run. Strive for the best.....there's nothing better than seeing the customer with that WOW look on their face when they see the amazing embroidery you provide them.

Justin Armenta
JA Digitizing Studios