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One method of placing vector artwork in Word Apps
Word is really bad at importing vector art ... but here's how I got high-quality vector art from OmniGraffle to Word:
  1. Use MicroSoft-loving TrueType fonts in your artwork: replace Helvetica with Arial, etc...
  2. Export the OmniGraffle file to PDF via your favorite method -- export, print to PDF, Acrobat distiller, whatever.
  3. Open the PDF if Adobe Acrobat Pro and select "Reduce PDF File Size." For my art, this usually creates a larger file rather than smaller, but if you skip this step, Illustrator mangles the file.
  4. Open the (new, not-smaller) PDF file in Illustrator.
  5. Verify that the text is not completely insane
  6. Export from Illustrator as "Legacy Illustrator EPS;" I found that Illustrator 10 worked OK.
  7. Import the resulting EPS file into Word X or 2004. You should see a low-res bitmap preview. You can verify the high-resolution result by printing to a PostScript printer (Word's Print Preview feature is not sufficient).
This is awful. If you can do without the bitmap preview, you can simply export from OmniGraffle as EPS and save five steps. But my co-workers freak out if they can't see the bitmap on-screen.

[robg adds: If anyone can come up with a better solution than the above, please add your comments! I don't own Illustrator and don't use vector artwork in Word, so I don't have anything much to add to this one!]
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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: simonpie on May 27, '04 09:56:46AM

Thanks, I was looking for a way to remove that damn canadian flag at the top of my screen. I would rather change it with something else but this does it. Saddly enough, the Canada-csa keybord stays in the keybord menu, which means that instead of having only 2 keybords in the menu I have 3. This is a little frustrating when doing option-command space to switch keyboard (I just need to toggle between us and canada-csa).

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: machard on May 27, '04 12:44:55PM

This way still limits the printing of the word doc to only a postscript printer.

I've spent allot of time trying to get nice looking vector art in Word and have found a solution that works for me.

1. Make sure your illustrator artwork is at about 800% of the size it will be in word. Also, make sure you're working in an RGB environment.

2. Select all and Create outlines. Remove any compound paths in the file (cmd+opt+8)(both images and type)

3. Anything that was a compound path now needs to have a page colour background applied to what was previously compounded.

4. Export the files as a wmf file using the export command (this is the same format that Word uses for it's clipart)

Here are the reasons/caveats that create/solve problems:

1. Art needs to be bigger because when Illustrator exports the wmf it straightens any and all curves in the file. To make this less visible, you make the file really big and shrink it down in Word.

2. Word doesn't read compound paths well so if you leave them untouched when you import it into word you will see thin keylines in any compound paths that exist.

3. Obviously, if anything had a compound path it needs to be coloured the same colour as the background it is being put on.

I know that this is super labourious, but this is simply the best solution that I have come up with in order to have vector art, in Word, that will print to all of those non-postscript printers that exist in the windows world.

Hope this helps!

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Or choose the 'Save for MS Office' option in Illustrator CS
Authored by: hamarkus on May 27, '04 02:15:20PM

Thanks a lot, these extra lines were driving me mad. But as I just found out, choosing 'Saving for MS Office' in Illustrator CS accomplishes something apparently similar (at least on my sample file no extra lines appear anymore, they appear only when printing for those who have never seen them).

Another advantage of of this 'For MS Office'-format (and WMF) is that you have a high (full) resolution preview, usefull in Powerpoint for screen presentations.

And I was not able to easily recreate some dashed lines that were in my original PDF-file, super labourious is really the write description.

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I think I have to eat my words...
Authored by: hamarkus on May 27, '04 04:11:00PM

I think I have to eat my words, the 'Save for MS Office' format (PNG) does NOT produce vector graphic files...

So, either use EPS and have no decent preview or labouriously edit your files in Illustrator (or rather don't use Word or Powerpoint when trying to produce high quality documents).

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: egilDOTnet on May 27, '04 01:47:36PM

A much easier way of doing this is to use GraphicConverter, which is included with all Powerbook and Powermac models at least. Do your work in your favourite vector art package, and print to PDF as suggested.

Then, start GraphicConverter, open the PDF document and save it as WMF format (Windows MetaFile). In Word, import the graphics file you just created with GC. Enjoy :)

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: jcscott on May 27, '04 03:44:10PM

Sorry, that procedure won't create VECTOR art to import into Word. GraphicConverter rasterizes the PDF, or any other format opened and then saved to WMF. Illustrator can save to a vectored WMF file, but you get those lines mentioned earlier in prints and in PDFs saved from the print dialog. When will Micro$oft play nice?

By the way, GraphicConverter is shareware and well worth the purchase price.

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: egilDOTnet on May 28, '04 06:51:16AM


Thanks for correcting me though! :)

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Skip the PDF and go directly to GraphicConverter. Works perfect!
Authored by: machard on May 28, '04 01:11:36PM

You guys just added an unnecessary step... skip the pdf and open the ai or eps directly in GraphicConverter.

Works like a charm! Way better than dealing with Illustrator!

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Anything GC outputs is still a bitmap!!! That's not what we want.
Authored by: hamarkus on May 28, '04 02:15:01PM

Anything GC outputs is still a bitmap!!! That's not what we want. Anything can be done via bitmaps, if you just make them big enough (and don't expect to be able to edit them again) but that is not the point.

Vector graphics are small files and high quality (no pixels at whatever magnification you look at it). Bitmaps are either small or high quality (and, depending on what you need, huge).

Anyway, anybody who wants high qualtity and uses Word or Powerpoint will probably run sooner or later into some problems like this.

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You're totally right. I revert back to my original instructions/post above...
Authored by: machard on May 31, '04 02:18:16PM

You're totally right. I revert back to my original instructions/post above...

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: jcscott on May 27, '04 06:29:05PM

After fiddling around a bit with MSWord and Illustrator 10 today, the best solution to get vector art into Word is to export a WMF from Illustrator. Microsoft's other graphic standard, Enhanced Metafile Format, produces more artifacts than WMF. The Computer Graphics Metafile format, also available in Illustrator, is not recognized by Word (v 10 anyway). Word recognizes PDF and EPSF, but does bizarre things to the images when PDFs are made.

To rid those thin lines that may appear in the final printed or PDF output, any compound objects must be "released" and the empty areas filled with white or some background color. Do this with the original Illustrator file and then export to WMF. Don't edit the WMF, as you'll have to export it again to save and compound WMF's line simplifying.

Someone in this thread mentioned scaling up the art 800%. 800% is a bit overkill, but scaling the art to fill the work page in Illustrator does help offset WMF's shortcomings.

Since I print to a CMYK printer, I use CMYK colors for the WMF. I've found, though, that the color space is irrelevant in this case. Word will even print Pantone colors, although I think it converts the Pantone color to an RGB or CMYK eqivalent.

With my way, you can eliminate a lot of the steps mentioned in the parent of this thread, assuming you have Illustrator. Getting vector art into MS Office products has always been a hassle. Any of this fixed in MS Office 2004? Not that I'm holding my breath.

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: machard on May 28, '04 01:03:32PM

Word's colour space is RGB. Unfortunately there's no way around that. If you create your original art in RGB there "shouldn't" be any extreme colour shifts. The only way to get Word to Print in any other colour space is to have postscript encapsulated directly in the image file. Then your back to an eps file that won't print on a non-postscript printer.

Since it's vector art, scaling it to 800 doesn't really increase the file size of the final Word doc (although the wmf will be larger, which is irrelevant since we're after a Word doc here) so I'm not sure what it would be overkilling. The more the file needs to be scaled down in Word, the more likely it is that all the straight lines will fade into a curve.

I had never tried GraphicConverter to create the files as another poster mentioned... No converting to outlines and messing around with stuff. The curves stay in tact (So you don't have to worry about scaling it). It seems that GraphicConverter is clearly the best bet!

Just tried Expression3. Don't waste your time with the 55MB download. You can only import legacy Illustrator files and even then it messes up gradients and such...

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Have you tried pict (.pct) format?
Authored by: pal on May 27, '04 06:42:54PM

Word on the Mac uses vector clipart in pict format. This format can be exported from Illustrator and inserted in Word.

The inserted pict resizes nicely, so I believe that the vectors are retained.

I haven't tried to open the file on the PC though.

Might be worth a try.

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Have you tried pict (.pct) format?
Authored by: jcscott on May 27, '04 11:35:48PM

Hmm, I forgot about PICT. It is a very versatile format. Word still has a problem with compound paths though (those thin radiating lines). PICT seems to make smoother paths than WMF, at least visually.

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Opens on Windows but with the thin lines as well
Authored by: hamarkus on May 28, '04 06:26:34AM

Opens on Windows but with the thin lines as well.

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: dennishenley on May 27, '04 08:33:06PM

I've found that most of my clients who want Illustrator art in a Word file really want it to look good on screen and for PDFs. Whenever they import an EPS file, it looks bad on screen and prints bad. Using Illustrator CS, I open good Illustrator art and choose Save for Microsoft Office from the File menu. This creates a PNG file which can be easily imported into Word and which looks good on screen and prints out decently. If you make the illustrator art larger and then scale the PNG in Word, you will probably increase the quality, but in my tests, the art printed out very nicely at 100%.

Dennis E. Henley
Chicago, IL

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PNG is just another bitmap format
Authored by: hamarkus on May 28, '04 05:46:17AM

As I just found out myself, 'Save for MS Office' aka PNG is just another bitmap format. A JPEG would fulfill the same purpose.

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: hdms on May 27, '04 10:38:36PM

Try Microsoft's free Expression 3 app - it's Illustrator-esque and seems to work OK in conjunction with Office v.X

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Using PP/Word files with vector graphics in Windows
Authored by: hamarkus on Jun 07, '04 03:18:34PM

Getting this to work both on a Mac and a PC is even more difficult.

I've compared three different methods of creating WMF (and EMF) files: converting an Igor EPS using Illustrator CS on W2k, Illustrator CS on Mac OS X 10.3.4 and using the Windows version of Igor (4.x) to directly export a WMF. I've then inserted these six files both in PP on a Mac and PP on Windows, looking at these twelve cases on Mac and PC screens and printing from both Computers. A few cross-checks with Word produced the same results.

On the Mac, WMF files created from a Mac-Igor-EPS via Win-Illustrator or Mac-Illustrator or directly by Win-Igor look fine on screen but have the problem of compound objects producing thin black lines in print-outs.

On the PC, all three versions of WMF files print fine but both Illustrator-WMFs are bitmapped on screen and only the Win-Igor-WMF looks fine on screen. The same is essentially true for EMFs on PCs.

On the Mac only the Win-Igor-EMF looks fine on screen and prints fine (except for the thin black lines in print-outs), both Illustrator-EMFs are bitmapped on screen and in print-outs.

There is no difference whether the graph is inserted on a Mac or a PC, except for slight differences in how dashed lines are displayed and with the degree of bitmapping (with EMFs on a Win screen and print-out). However, once a PP file, where the graphs had been inserted on a PC, is saved again on a Mac, all those graphs are replaced by a red X when looked at on Windows (but not on the Mac).

So what are the solutions, a WMF created by Igor on Windows inserted on a Mac gets pretty close to the catch all solution in cases where Igor does not produce any compound objects, which seems to happen very rarely. In my case, however, most of the closed letters (e, b, d ) had barely visible thin black lines inside (and the procedure described above was not able to get rid of them).

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One method of placing vector artwork in Word
Authored by: billspat on Apr 13, '08 06:38:11PM

This is an old hint but I found it on Google looking to solve the same problem (to import PDF vectors from programs like R, Graphviz, etc).

Word 2008 can import PDF and retain as a vector image, and takes PDF from the clipboard.

Saving as the earlier version (.doc and not .docx), and then opening in Word 2004, these images retain their vector goodness. In fact, opening in Word 2000 on a PC they still looked great.

Not necessarily a fan of Word, but for those stuck with it, the latest version may be the solution.

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Spidery thin lines in Mac Word WMF
Authored by: ajmoody on Jun 25, '08 06:42:22PM

As one of the posts above mentions WMF files placed in Mac versions of Word tend to produce artifacts when printed - generally radial lines between points in the placed graphic. I have found that I can stop this if I adjust the transparency of the graphic to 1% (so 99% opaque).
Hope this works for you too!

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