Friday, December 23, 2016

Decal Tutorial

Good day to you all!

Who has ever wanted to make there own custom decals?

If you have you are in luck, I have put together a comprehensvie setep by step guide to do just that!

First off ensure that if you intend to use copywrited images ensrue that you get permission to use them.

So I will be domonstrating how to make decals on CorelDRAW x7, this will only be critical for the tracing of images if you wish you can use any other graphic design program.
Step 1 open the program
Step 2 to make things easier for size reference add a grid.

Step 3 you will want to re size the grid to fit your scale I have chosen to make it one line every inch.  Giving me one inch squares.
Step 4 here is how you do that
Now that we have the page setup we can begin the process.
Next you import an image.
Here we have selected a skull and crossbone emblem.
This is what it will look like, note in CorelDRAW you will not be able to change colour or edit the image, until you do the next step.
Select the image and then right click on it and got to outline track and select High Quality Image.
Here is what the trace screen looks like, there are three things you need to know about auto trace.
1) Detail level
2) Smoothing
3) Corner Smooting
You can play around to these settings to get the image to look as sharp as you want it
Also you will genterally want to get rid of the back ground so selecet: "Remove Background"
The colied image will be placed overtop of the origonal, so you will have to move it.
Here is the copied image on the right, pretty fancy hey!
So you can get rid of the origonal now you won't need it anymore.  Next you will need to import an image of what you want to place the decal on, in this case an M1 tank.
You will need to ensure you have the measurements for the size of the model in this case the M1 is 1 3/4 inches wide.  I use the measurement tabs to help me scale the picture. 
So I make the tank 1 3/4 wide.  This can work with any scale you just need to know the size of the model.
Next I shrik the image to approximatly the size I want.
Next ensure that the image you want to make a decal out of is brough to the "front"
Then move the decal image onto the scale reference image.  I have also changed the colour for ease of view.
Then simply scale the image to the size desired.


  1. This is really really useful Nick - will you be publishing how you do the whole process?