Learn all virtually resizing images for print with Photoshop! You’ll learn how impress size works, how (and when) to overstate your photos, how to resize for different frame sizes, and how to get the highest quality prints every time!
In this tutorial, the 3rd in my serial on image size, I’ll show you how like shooting fish in a barrel it is to resize an epitome for print with Photoshop! Resizing for print is different from resizing for the spider web or for screen viewing. That’s because there’due south often no need to change the number of pixels in the prototype.
Most of today’s digital cameras capture images that are already large enough to impress at standard frame sizes, like 8 x 10 or 11 x 14, and get great results. So rather than irresolute the number of pixels, all we need to do is change the print size. And as nosotros’ll see, we modify the print size just past changing the photo’south
resolution. I’ll embrace what resolution is, and how much of it you need for loftier quality prints, in this tutorial.
need to print the image at a larger size, so you’ll demand to enlarge it by calculation more pixels. Also, if you lot want to fit your paradigm to a frame size that doesn’t match the aspect ratio of the photo, you’ll first need to crop the prototype earlier resizing it. I’ll be covering both of these topics also.
To follow forth, yous can open any image in Photoshop. I’ll use this beautiful little fella that I downloaded from Adobe Stock:
The original prototype. Photo credit: Adobe Stock.
This is lesson 3 in my Resizing Images in Photoshop series.
Let’due south go started!
The Image Size dialog box
To resize an image for impress in Photoshop, we use the Prototype Size dialog box. To open up it, go up to the
menu in the Carte Bar and choose
Going to Prototype > Image Size.
In Photoshop CC, the Image Size dialog box features a preview window on the left, and options for viewing and irresolute the prototype size on the right. I covered the Prototype Size dialog box in detail in the previous tutorial:
The Image Size dialog box in Photoshop CC.
Getting a larger epitome preview
The first affair you’ll want to practice is increase the size of the preview window, and you can exercise that by making the Prototype Size dialog box larger. Just drag the dialog box into the upper left of the screen, and then drag its bottom correct corner outward.
Once you’ve resized the dialog box, click and elevate within the preview window to centre your subject area:
Resizing the dialog box for a larger image preview.
Viewing the electric current image size
The current size of your prototype is displayed at the top. The number adjacent to the words
shows the size of the paradigm in megabytes (M). And below that, side by side to the give-and-take
Dimensions, we encounter the image size in pixels. Neither of these tell u.s. the impress size, but we’ll get to that in a moment:
The current image size is displayed at the top.
Resizing vs resampling an image
Earlier we look at how to resize the image for print, we kickoff demand to know the of import departure between
an epitome and
What is image resizing?
means that nosotros’re not irresolute the number of pixels in the image. All we’re doing is changing the size that the image volition
impress. We control the print size non past irresolute the number of pixels but by changing the image
resolution. I covered image size and resolution in the outset tutorial in this series, but nosotros’ll wait at it again in a moment.
What is image resampling?
means that we’re irresolute the number of pixels. Adding more than pixels is known every bit
upsampling, and throwing pixels abroad is called
downsampling. Downsampling is used when you’re reducing the size of an image, whether it’s for electronic mail, for uploading to the spider web, or for general screen viewing. Merely you won’t need to downsample an image for print. You
need to upsample information technology, though, if the electric current pixel dimensions are too pocket-size to impress information technology at the size you lot need. I’ll show you lot how to upsample the image a bit subsequently.
How impress size works
To see if your paradigm already has plenty pixels to print it at your target size, start by turning the
option off. You’ll find it directly below the Resolution option. With Resample off, Photoshop won’t let us change the number of pixels. All we can modify is the print size:
Turning the Resample option off.
Where is the current print size?
The current print size is shown in the
fields. In my case, my paradigm will print 10.747 inches wide and 7.163 inches tall at a resolution of 300 pixels per inch:
The electric current width, acme and resolution.
What is epitome resolution?
The width and height are pretty straightforward. Just what is resolution?
is the number of pixels in your image that volition print in 1 linear inch of paper. Since the image has a limited number of pixels, the more pixels you print per inch, the smaller the epitome will print. And too, printing fewer pixels per inch volition give you a larger print size.
Since we’re not changing the
of pixels in the epitome, changing the resolution has no effect on the file size or on how the image looks on screen. Resolution only applies to print.
Learn more: The 72 ppi web resolution myth
With my image, the resolution is currently set to
300 pixels/inch. This means that 300 pixels from the width,
300 pixels from the height, will print within every inch of paper. That may not sound similar a lot. But if y’all do the math, 300 10 300 = 90,000. And so this ways that 90,000 pixels will print within every
The Resolution value is for both the width
How does resolution affect the print size?
To understand how resolution affects the print size, all we need to do is divide the current width and height of the image, in pixels, past the electric current resolution. In my case, my prototype has a width of 3224 pixels:
The current image width, in pixels.
If we divide 3224 pixels past 300 pixels/inch, nosotros become 10.747 inches for the width:
The pixel width, divided by the resolution, gives u.s.a. the print width.
And my image has a elevation of 2149 pixels:
The current epitome height, in pixels.
So if nosotros take 2149 pixels and divide it by 300 pixels/inch, we get 7.163 inches for the summit:
The pixel tiptop, divided by the resolution, gives us the impress height.
How much resolution do you lot demand for high quality prints?
Now that we know how resolution affects the print size, the existent question becomes, how
resolution do we need for the impress to look adept? I’ll answer that one question with three dissimilar answers. First, I’ll tell you lot the official answer. Then, I’ll explain why many people call back the official respond is nonsense. And finally, I’ll share what I consider to be the
answer and the i I concord with.
Answer #1: The industry standard resolution
First, the official answer. The long-held industry standard for high quality printing is a resolution of
300 pixels/inch. This ways y’all demand at least 300 pixels per inch if you want your image to look well-baked and sharp with lots of item when printed. There’s cypher wrong with this standard, and printing at 300 pixels/inch will definitely requite y’all nifty results.
Reply #two: The “good enough” resolution
But there’southward a couple of arguments against the industry standard resolution. The first is that it only considers pixel count every bit a gene in print quality. It doesn’t have other of import factors, like viewing distance, into consideration. By and large speaking, the larger the impress, the farther away people view it. Yous may hold a 4″ x half-dozen” print upwards shut, but you’re more likely to stand a few feet dorsum from a 24″ ten 36″ or xxx” x 40″ poster. And a billboard off the highway is usually viewed from
of anxiety away.
Since our eyes tin’t resolve the same amount of item at farther distances, the statement goes that it makes no sense to print everything, no affair the viewing distance, at the same resolution. 300 pixels/inch may be what you lot need for smaller prints viewed upward close, but larger prints with lower resolutions can wait just as good when viewed from far plenty away:
Resolution becomes less of import as you lot motility farther from the image.
Another argument against the industry standard is that while 300 pixels/inch will give you the highest print quality possible, information technology raises a question. Do you actually
the highest quality? Or, is there a lower resolution that’southward “skillful enough”? Many professional person photographers settle on
every bit beingness the sweet spot for resolution. Certain, a 300 pixels/inch impress will wait slightly better in a side-by-side comparison. Merely 240 pixels/inch however produces a precipitous and detailed paradigm that almost people would be perfectly happy with. And by not having to upscale the image to 300 pixels/inch, the file size remains smaller.
Respond #three: Your printer’south native resolution
While the arguments confronting the industry standard resolution of 300 pixels/inch are potent, they go out out i very important detail. In fact, information technology’s
an important detail that information technology tends to make the arguments against the industry standard rather pointless.
The fact is, your printer has its own
native impress resolution. And it expects to receive your images at this native resolution. Most printers have a native resolution of
300 pixels/inch, which matches the industry standard. If you ship the printer an epitome with a lower resolution, similar 240 pixels/inch, the printer volition automatically upsample it to its native resolution for you. In other words, it’s simply not possible to impress an image at anything less than your printer’south native resolution. If
don’t enlarge the epitome, your
Epson printers, like my Epson Stylus Pro 3880, use an fifty-fifty higher native resolution of
360 pixels/inch. And then with Epson printers, whatsoever resolutions lower than 360 will automatically be upsampled to 360. Other printer manufacturers (Canon, HP, etc) stick to 300.
Which answer is right?
So what does all of this mean? What’s the correct resolution for high quality prints? The reply, for well-nigh inkjet printers, is
300 pixels/inch. That’south the printer’due south native resolution. For Epson printers, it’s
360 pixels/inch. Annihilation less and your printer will upsample the epitome anyway. Merely Photoshop can exercise a amend chore of upsampling than your printer tin. So if your image’s resolution drops below 300 pixels/inch, yous’ll desire to upsample information technology in the Image Size dialog box earlier sending it off to print.
The best resolution is your printer’s native resolution.
Is there such a thing every bit
What if your prototype resolution is
than your printer’s native resolution? Do yous demand to downsample the image to go far smaller? No, you don’t. It’s perfectly okay to send the printer more pixels than it needs, and it will help to brand sure your prototype looks as abrupt as information technology possibly can.
How to change the print size
And so now that we know how image resolution affects impress size, and the minimum resolution we need for high quality prints, permit’southward look at how to
the print size. To change it, with the Resample option turned off, just enter the new print size into the
fields. Since the Width and Height are linked together, irresolute one will automatically change the other.
Matching the attribute ratio and orientation of the image
Note, though, that y’all’ll but exist able to enter a size that matches the current
of the prototype. Then for example, if your image uses a 4 x six aspect ratio, equally mine does, y’all won’t exist able to print information technology as an 8 x 10. The aspect ratios don’t friction match. To print the paradigm to a different attribute ratio, you lot’ll outset demand to ingather it, and I’ll bear witness you lot how to practice that afterwards.
Along with the attribute ratio, you’ll also want to be aware of the
of your image. If the epitome is in
orientation, where the width is smaller than the height, then y’all’ll want to set the width to the smaller of the 2 values. And if it’south in
way, where the width is larger than the height, ready the width to the larger value.
Changing the width and height
For instance, let’s say I want to impress my image as a 4″ x 6″. I know that information technology’south in landscape orientation, with the width larger than the pinnacle, so I’ll set the Width value to six inches. Photoshop automatically sets the Top to 4 inches, or in this case, to 3.999 inches, to match the attribute ratio:
Entering a Width value automatically sets the Meridian value.
If I wanted the meridian to be exactly 4 inches, I could change the Tiptop value to 4 inches, which would then change the Width to half dozen.001 inches. So the aspect ratio of my image isn’t
4 x six, but it’s close plenty:
Changing the Height automatically changes the Width.
Checking the image resolution
Notice that the Resolution value is also linked to the Width and Peak. And by lowering the width and height, the resolution has increased, from 300 pixels/inch upwardly to 537.25 pixels/inch. That’s considering nosotros need to pack
pixels per inch in order to print the image at the smaller size. But, since the new resolution is much higher than the minimum resolution nosotros demand (300 pixels/inch), there’s no need to upsample information technology. This image will look bully merely the way information technology is:
Lowering the width and height raised the resolution.
Checking the image size
Also, notice that changing the impress size had no upshot on the bodily epitome size, in pixels or in megabytes. It’southward still the exact same image, and all nosotros’ve washed is inverse the size that it will print:
The print size has no effect on anything else.
When to enlarge the paradigm
But let’s say that, instead of printing it as a 4″ x half-dozen” (or 6″ ten 4″, in this example), I need to double the width and summit so that it prints at 12″ by 8″. I’ll change the Height value from 4 to eight inches, and Photoshop automatically doubles the Width, from vi to 12 inches. Notice, though, that by doubling the width and superlative, we’ve cut the Resolution value in half, and it’due south now
the minimum resolution nosotros need of 300 pixels/inch:
Increasing the width and summit dropped the resolution below 300 ppi.
Going back to what we learned earlier, some people would say that any resolution over 240 pixels/inch is fine, and so our new resolution of roughly 268 ppi is okay. Only, since your printer’s native resolution is 300 ppi (or 360 ppi for Epson printers), and the printer volition upsample the image on its own if we don’t do information technology ourselves, there’due south no reason for us not to upsample information technology here in the Paradigm Size dialog box. Doing then will give us ameliorate results than if we left it upwardly to the printer.
How to upsample an image
To upsample the image, turn the
Clicking the Resample checkbox.
And then enter the resolution you demand into the
field. Again, for most printers, it’southward 300 ppi, or 360 ppi for Epson printers:
Entering the new resolution.
Checking the width and height
Detect that with Resample turned on, the Resolution field is no longer linked to the Width and Peak fields. And then fifty-fifty though nosotros’ve increased the resolution, the image is still going to print 12″ broad and viii” tall:
Changing the resolution had no effect on the width and height.
Checking the epitome size
changed this fourth dimension is the actual size of the image, both in pixels and in megabytes. With Resample turned on, increasing the resolution forced Photoshop to add together more pixels. If you call back, my image was originally 3224 px wide and 2149 px alpine. Simply after resampling information technology, the width has increased to 3601 px and the height is at present upwardly to 2400 px.
As well, considering we’ve added more pixels, the size of the image in memory has increased too, from 19.8 megabytes to 24.7 megabytes:
Upsampling the image increased the pixel dimensions and the file size.
The Interpolation method
Whenever nosotros resample an image, Photoshop adds or removes pixels. And the method it uses to do that is known as the
method. In that location are several interpolation methods to choose from, and the differences betwixt them can take a large impact on the quality of the image.
Yous’ll find the
option to the right of the Resample option. By default, it’due south set to
Automated. Interpolation only applies to resampling. And then when the Resample pick is turned off, the Interpolation option is grayed out:
The Interpolation option. But bachelor when Resample is checked.
Choosing an interpolation method
If yous click on the option, you’ll open a listing with all the dissimilar interpolation methods to choose from. Some are for upsampling, and others for downsampling:
The interpolation methods.
Learning how each i works would take an entire lesson on its own. But luckily, you don’t really need to know annihilation about them. By default, the Interpolation pick is set to
Automatic, which lets Photoshop choose the ane that will work best. Leaving it set to Automatic is a safe pick.
Preserve Details 2.0
Still, in Photoshop CC 2018, Adobe added a
upscaling method known equally
Preserve Details two.0. This new method is now the best choice for enlarging your images. But the problem is that, for now at to the lowest degree, Photoshop volition not select information technology if you lot leave the Interpolation option set to Automatic. So if you’re using CC 2018 (or later) and y’all’re upsampling your image, you lot’ll desire to alter the interpolation method from Automatic to Preserve Details 2.0:
In CC 2018, cull Preserve Details two.0 when upsampling an image.
If you’re non seeing Preserve Details 2.0 in the listing, yous’ll starting time need to enable it in Photoshop’s Preferences. I cover how to exercise that, and why it’southward the best choice, in my Best Style to Enlarge Images in CC 2018 tutorial.
How to resize an prototype for print – Quick summary
Earlier nosotros go on and look at how to resize an image to a different aspect ratio, let’s quickly summarize what we’ve learned.
To resize an epitome for impress, open the Image Size dialog box (Epitome > Image Size) and start by turning the
off. Enter the size you need into the
fields, and so check the
value. If the resolution is the
higher, than your printer’s native resolution (300 ppi for nigh printers, or 360 ppi for Epson printers), then there’south goose egg more than you lot need to do.
If the resolution is
than your printer’s native resolution, upsample the image by turning the
on. And so set the
for Epson printers). Exit the
method set to
Automated, or in Photoshop CC 2018 (or later on), change it to
Preserve Details two.0.
How to resize to a dissimilar aspect ratio
Earlier, I mentioned that you lot can but cull a impress size that matches the current aspect ratio of the image. Only what if you need a
attribute ratio? For instance, what if I demand to print my 4 x half dozen image so that it will fit inside an eight” ten 10″ photograph frame?
The problem with different aspect ratios
Nosotros can already see the problem. With the Height set to viii inches, the Width is set to 12 inches, not 10, so that’s not going to piece of work:
Setting the height gives me the incorrect width.
If I endeavour changing the Width to 10 inches, the Superlative becomes half dozen.666 inches. Nonetheless not what I desire:
Changing the width gives me the wrong height.
And if I modify the Width to 8 inches, Photoshop sets the Summit to 5.333 inches. There’s no way for me to choose an 8″ x ten” print size while my paradigm is using a 4 ten six aspect ratio:
No matter what I do, I can’t get the size I demand.
How to crop to a unlike attribute ratio
To resize the image to impress at a unlike aspect ratio, we first need to ingather the image to the new ratio. Hither’s how to do information technology.
Footstep 1: Abolish the Image Size control
Close the Image Size dialog box without making any changes by clicking the
button at the bottom:
Canceling and endmost the Prototype Size control.
Stride 2: Select the Crop Tool
In the Toolbar, select the
Selecting the Crop Tool.
Step three: Set the new attribute ratio in the Options Bar
And then in the Options Bar, enter your new aspect ratio into the
boxes. Don’t enter a specific measurement type, similar inches. Just enter the numbers themselves. I’ll enter 8 and 10:
Entering the new attribute ratio in the Options Bar.
Step 4: Resize the ingather border if needed
Photoshop instantly reshapes the ingather border to the new ratio. You can resize the border if needed past dragging the handles, but I’ll simply leave mine the way it is:
Cropping the image to the new aspect ratio.
Pace 5: Crop the epitome
Back in the Options Bar, make certain the
Delete Cropped Pixels
is turned off. This way, y’all won’t be making any permanent changes:
Leave Delete Cropped Pixels turned off.
Then, to crop the paradigm to the new ratio, click the
in the Options Bar:
Clicking the checkmark.
And here’s the prototype, now cropped to the 8 x 10 attribute ratio. It nonetheless won’t
at 8” by 10” notwithstanding, but we know how to fix that, which we’ll practice next:
The cropped version of the image.
Step six: Resize the image in the Prototype Size dialog box
At this signal, to resize the paradigm for impress, but follow the same steps we’ve already learned. Starting time, open the Epitome Size dialog box past going upwardly to the
carte du jour and choosing
Going to Image > Image Size.
option, and then enter your new print size into the
fields. This fourth dimension, I have no trouble choosing an 8″ by 10″ size, although the Width value is only slightly off at 8.004 inches. Notwithstanding close enough.
Notice, though, that the
value has dropped below 300 pixels/inch, which means I’ll need to upsample it:
Turn Resample off, enter the new Width and Height, and then check the Resolution.
To upsample it, I’ll turn the
option on, and then I’ll alter the
300 pixels/inch. Or once again, if the image was heading to an Epson printer, I would enter
Turning on Resample, then setting the Resolution to 300 ppi.
Finally, for the
method, I could either go out it ready to
Automatic, or since I’1000 using Photoshop CC 2018, I’ll change information technology to
Preserve Details 2.0:
Setting the interpolation method.
When you’re fix to resize the prototype, click OK to accept your settings and close the Image Size dialog box:
Click OK to resize the paradigm.
And there nosotros have it! That’south everything you lot need to know to resize images for print in Photoshop! In the adjacent lesson, nosotros’ll learn how to resize images for e-mail and sharing online!
Yous tin bound to any of the other lessons in this Resizing Images in Photoshop chapter. Or visit our Photoshop Basics section for more than topics!