Bitmap to SVG

Creating an SVG from a bitmap is pretty easy in Inkscape. Copy and paste your bitmap into a new Inkscape file, select it, do

path -> trace bitmap



(I used the default options)

The new trace is exactly on top of the original – select and move it


path -> stroke to path


path -> simplify

Then go to node edit tool and delete the ones you don’t want by hand.


However for a plain black on white drawing, this gives you a double line, and in my case, it had no fill, so no way to recreate the line as it was in the original diagram. Or it defeated me anyway.


So I used Gimp to export the png image as .ppm format,


and then you can do:

brew install potrace
potrace -s cat_black.ppm -o output.svg

Then open the output.svg in Inkscape and edit it as before – this time I got a filled double line.


And I was able to delete the inner line of the outline of the cat, but keep the fill for the whiskers and eyes (this was to export as a dxf for laser cutting).