This is a quickie post, but the services contained herein may soak up all kinds of free time, depending on how artistic you are. First is Vector Magic. This is a new online tool that you upload an image to, and it returns a vectorized version of your image. For info on vector vs. raster imagery, go here, for the Cliffsnotes version read this: vector images contain mathematical information on the color and shape of the lines that compose the image, raster drawings contained colored pixels. Basically, a raster image is locked into a single resolution, but vector images can be scaled almost infinitely without ever looking pixellated. That said, vector drawings are often not as detailed and suck out loud at moving imagery. Vector Magic is not revolutionary, there are other tools that let you convert a raster image to vectors, but it is free, online, and apparently competitive with more expensive options. Let me know if you try it out, it seems to be pretty cool.
The second service I have used myself, and love. The Rasterbator takes any image you give it and pixellates, halftones, and scales it up to whatever size you want (measured in 8.5″ x 11″ blocks). It then sends you a PDF that you print out, tape together, and admire greatly. The images that the Rasterbator creates are very cool, with a Lichtenstein-esque halftone feel to them and an almost infinite scale possible. We had a giant image in our living room for years that came from this service- it got old and we took it down a few months ago, but I really liked it while it was up there. Check out this gallery to see what some people have done with it. If you do end up using the site for anything, let us know, I’d love to see it.