Image Size Does Not Comply with Photolab Requirements

You have many images that you want to print. You can print them at home but your printer is not good for the purpose, so you decide that you will print your images at a photolab. Very often your involvement in the process will be to take the images to the photolab and to pick the ready printouts in a couple of days later but sometimes the process might not be that straightforward.

For instance, the images you take to the photolab, may not meet their requirements for size, file format, DPI, color palettes, etc. In many cases the photolab will offer you to fix these problems for a small fee but in other cases they do not offer such services. Sometimes, even if they offer such services, it is easier that you change the photos the way you want them, instead of leaving this task to the photolab. It all depends on what in your images does not comply with the photolab requirements.

If your images need serious processing, you’d better leave this task to the professionals at the photolab. But if your images need minor changes, like conversion from one image format to another, or image size adjustments, you can do it on your own. There are many programs, for instance ImageConverter, that can help you change the size of your images.

Changing the image size is not difficult but there are situations, where the best solution is not obvious at first. Here are some tips and tricks that can help you when you encounter problems with image resizing:

  • Proportional resizing. When you change the size of your images, pay attention to what you change. You can change only one dimension (i.e. the height of an image) and keep the other intact (the width) but this will cause the image to look distorted. So, it is best to change proportionally both the height and the width of an image.
  • Crop the image. When proportional resizing is not an option – for instance because the source image is either very tall, or very wide, you can consider cropping. Cropping part of the image could be more acceptable than deforming it by disproportional resizing because almost always there are items on the side of the image that can be safely cropped. For instance, if you have a photo of a country house with blue sky above it, you can remove 2-3 or even more centimeters from the sky because it is the house that matters in the picture.
  • Use effects. If neither proportional resizing, nor cropping help you achieve the right image size without tradeoffs, consider more advanced techniques. For instance, if the image can’t be cropped because there are no unnecessary items on the sides, you can still resize it proportionally and fill the empty space with elements like background color, or gradient, or frame, or other effects.

You can also center the image vertically (if the image is narrower than the standard) or horizontally (if the image is shorter than the standard), thus leaving less empty space in one place.

However, have in mind that sometimes such tricks just spoil the image, rather than solve your image size problem. If this tips do not solve your problem with the image size, maybe it is better to leave the solution to the photolab – t hey will fix what is possible to fix.

  • ” Remake the image. Sometimes it is better to make the image again with the right height and width than to look for workarounds. For instance, if you have a poster to print and you have all the pictures in it as separate files, just create a new file in your image processing program and make the poster from scratch.

Author: Ada Ivanova