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Help...Trying to convert 4x5 to 4x6! Help!

Jacki Frontiero , May 30, 2008; 01:27 p.m.

So the title says it all! I am getting so fustrated trying to convert my digital images so that I can order regular size prints. I know I should be leaving a little more room when I take my shots...but have any of you had any images you love and didn't leave that extra room, then when you go to print its cropped?! I was playing in photoshop cs3...I put faded edges, put a border, and have been trying everything to make the picture look ok...needless to say I am unhappy with how they are turning out! Anyone have any advice of tips to throw my way?! I am desperate need! Thank You Jacki


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Ellis Vener , May 30, 2008; 01:49 p.m.

just add some extra white border using the canvas to bring the print size ratio up to the size you want.

Rand McNatt , May 30, 2008; 01:49 p.m.

How do you feel about resizing the canvas up to to a 4x6 crop, ordering the 4x6, then cutting off the unneeded border(s) with a paper trimmer or scissors?

Randall Pukalo , May 30, 2008; 02:05 p.m.

why not just order 4x5 prints...many of the online photo printers such as adorama.com or mpix.com offer 4x5. As well as any pro Lab (4x5 is alo a medium and large format film print size)

Jacki Frontiero , May 30, 2008; 02:17 p.m.

What about when a customer wants an 8x10 and the size of my image is 8x12?

Rob Bernhard , May 30, 2008; 02:17 p.m.

Other stores offer 4.5x6 prints as well. You do have options.

If you're dead certain on going with 4x6 then I would go the route Ellis suggested.

Jacki Frontiero , May 30, 2008; 02:22 p.m.

I am only set on the sizes 4x6, 5x7, and 8x10 because thats what customers seem to want! Printing these crops out some of the image. For my personal use it doesn't bother me what size it is!

Thanks Jacki

Walt Flanagan , May 30, 2008; 02:43 p.m.

You have to plan ahead of time while taking the photo. If you know what sizes and aspect ratios your customers want then compose the image so that it will be okay at all of them.

35mm film and virtually all DSLRs have a 3:2 aspect ratio. Most point and shoots are 4:3. Large format 4x5 film is obviously 4:5. Many medium format cameras are 6x7 or 6x6 (1:1 square)

You can get a replacement focusing screen from Katz Eye Optics that has custom crop lines etched into it. It will help you previsualize a 5:4 crop or whatever.

Sheldon Hambrick , May 30, 2008; 03:03 p.m.

"Printing these crops out some of the image." - Don't crop out. Just add boarder like Ellis suggested.

Rand McNatt , May 30, 2008; 03:21 p.m.

"...thats what customers seem to want!"

Ok, that's different. We have to contend with that, too. Previsualizing the shot in all the possible crops is just a habit you have to get into. However, there are options when that isn't possible or you start having too much fun and just plain forget.

Have you played with adding a bit of background along the long edge(s)? I've been doing that since my first introduction to digital retouching (on a state of the art 486DX-100 with a full 100 megabytes of disk space). We do it all the time.

Try this: First resize the canvas to the crop you need, then either clone in some new background, or select some edge area and transform it (Ctrl-T) wider/taller to fill in the gap. It takes some practice (doesn't everything?) but it can save a picture. You can also, sometimes, expand/compress the whole image in one dimension, just be sure the effect is not visible: about 5% seems to be the limit (and don't make people look heavier! Skinnier is usually OK).

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