Photography Information

 

Cropping Digital Photos Into Shape




Did you know that in many cases digital photos are cropped by the time they reach paper? If you have never "cropped" your photos manually, you may not be aware that it is happening.

What is cropping?

Cropping is the process of trimming portions of the digital image so it fits in the shape of the paper. Let's say we have a 5" x 7" photo. The problem is, the frame we want to display is 4" x 6". One of our choices is to take scissors and carefully trim away the least important edges of the photo until it fits into the 4" x 6" frame. What we have accomplished is "cropping".

In the world of digital photography, cropping is performed with software. When the photo is comprised of bits of data, there is no need to crop for size alone-the software and printing process can stretch the image to fit. We do, however, have to crop digital images to fit the paper's shape.

A more detailed look

Let's look at an example. My Canon camera has a sensor size of 1536 x 2048 pixels. Dividing these numbers by the highest common denominator of 512, we get an image shape of 3 x 4.

How many print sizes do you think fit this shape? Not many. If we want 4" x 6" prints, the shape of the 3 x 4 digital image will not fit. It is possible to stretch the image into the 4 x 6 shape using software, but this will distort the image, which we don't want.

Our only option is to crop the 3 x 4 image into the 4 x 6 shape. If you are thinking, "I never had to crop my images and they always looked fine," then chances are the cropping was done for you automatically. Who would do such a thing behind your back?

Don't be alarmed, cropping was always done on our behalf, even with film photos. When we drop off our digital photos at a lab to have them developed, or insert them into our printer, the images are loaded into the computer system and are automatically cropped. How does the computer know which sections are OK to crop and which ones are not? It doesn't. When the decision is left to the machine, it will trim an equal amount from two edges.

Have you ever received a photo from the lab and something important near the edge was cut off, but when you saw it on the computer screen it was there? That is a result of automated cropping.

Do your own cropping for maximum control

Under most circumstances automatic cropping produces good results with our snapshots. In cases where we want to control precisely where the image is trimmed, we need to take the cropping under our own control.

Cropping can be accomplished in several places such as your photo editing or printing software, online developing services, or the kiosk machine available at many local labs. I find that the best place to crop your photos is on your own computer using the software you are most familiar with. If you have never used this feature of your photo editing software, I urge you to learn how to use it. The other two cropping methods are typically more time consuming. You may also be rushed during the delicate cropping procedure if a line forms behind you at a kiosk machine.

Charles Kerekes is an amateur photographer and maintains the Flying Sam Digital Photo Guide (FlyingSamPhoto.com) web site to help others find fun and unique digital photo finishing products and services.


MORE RESOURCES:

Aljazeera.com

The evolution of war photography
Aljazeera.com
War photography has evolved since Lebanon's 1975-1990 civil war, influenced by the advent of new technologies and the internet. Yet many of the ethical questions from that era remain relevant today, including when to put the camera down and how to ...



PetaPixel (blog)

How to Successfully Fail at Photography
PetaPixel (blog)
Photography is a lot of fun. For the most part, it's a solo pursuit where you are completely responsible for your own success or failure. But anyone can be a great photographer! Most people in the world are professional photographers now that phones ...



MyAJC

Fall Arts in Atlanta: Photography shines in area galleries - MyAJC.com
MyAJC
The smart money this fall is on photography, a genre the story-telling South has always excelled at.

and more »


PetaPixel (blog)

10 Predictions About the Future of Photography - PetaPixel
PetaPixel (blog)
How might photography evolve in the coming years and decades? The folks over at COOPH took a look at current trends and research projects to come up with ...

and more »


Rexburg Standard Journal

Sugar-Salem High School students sell shirts and photography at Vendors Village
Rexburg Standard Journal
REXBURG — Two Sugar-Salem High School students are relying on their interests in American Sign Language and photography to sell to eclipse crowds at the Rexburg Vendors Village this weekend. Lillian Barrus, 17, has created eclipse T-shirts imprinted ...



Fstoppers

Why Every Cinematographer Should Spend More Time Practicing Photography
Fstoppers
While photography and videography are different, they share many common aspects. Starting with one, and then also learning the other is an excellent idea to improve your craft and potentially open doors for more jobs by becoming more versatile. In a ...



National Herald

Social media celebrates World Photography Day
National Herald
Photography, in the words of Bruno Barbey, the Moroccan-born French photographer, is the only language that can be understood anywhere in the world. And what could be a better medium for the expression of this universal language than social media.



Los Angeles Times

Backed by ACLU, photographer sues for right to shoot Pershing ...
Los Angeles Times
Backed by the ACLU, a photographer has filed a lawsuit challenging the city of Los Angeles' ban on professional camera equipment at its Pershing Square ...

and more »


Fstoppers

The Art of Photography as Therapy for Your Clients
Fstoppers
Photography is not only a creative outlet for the photographer, but it also can provide healing to your clients. Most boudoir sessions are sought after in order to gain confidence, many family sessions are there to capture generations for preservation ...



ACLU Suing City Over Pershing Square Photography Ban
LAist
The American Civil Liberties Union and 12 other organizations are moving forward with a lawsuit against the City of Los Angeles for a ban on photography and the distribution of flyers at the Pershing Square summer concert series—restrictions the ...


Google News

home | site map
© 2006 KeralaClick.com