Cropping and Resizing Photos
Last week I defined three terms related to digital photo sizing: image size, pixel and resolution. This week I’d like to take a look at cropping and resizing photos for display in your Zibbet shop.
Cropping refers to the removal of the outer edges of an image. Cropping allows you to improve the framing of your image so that the item you’re presenting is emphasized. Cropping also allows you to use one original photograph for multiple final images to highlight details of the item.
Resizing refers to making your images larger or smaller. Editing the dimensions and the resolution of images are basic resizing functions. Item images can’t have a file size larger than 3MB or dimensions larger than 800 pixels wide by 600 pixels high.
The cropping process requires special image editing software. Most digital cameras come with a basic program that you can install on your computer. There are also many free image editing applications available online that include all the features needed to crop and resize your photos. Some examples include PicMonkey, Picasa and pixlr.
I use a 14 megapixel digital point and shoot camera for photographing my items. My camera is set to take images that are 4288 pixels x 3216 pixels. This makes my original photographs very large. After I crop and resize my images, they will be 600 pixels square with a resolution set at 150 pixels per inch. The file size will be less than 200KB in most cases. I save my images as .jpg files. I crop all of my images to be square because Zibbet’s thumbnails are square. Having my photos square prevents them from being cropped when displayed as thumbnails. Here’s an example of the cropping and resizing procedure I follow when editing my photos. The specifics of how this works will vary according the the photo editing software that you use but the basics are fundamentally the same.
First, I open my 4288 x 3216 photo (file size 1.37MB) in my photo editing software. Using the Save As command, I save my photo with a unique name that describes the image. I’ll edit this image while keeping the original unchanged in case I want to manipulate it in a different way.
Next, I crop my image square using the cropping tool in my image editing software. My original photo was 4288 x 3216. I’ve cropped it to 2345 x 2345.
Finally, I resize my cropped photo. I set the dimensions to 600 x 600 and the resolution at 150 pixels per inch. The file size of the image is now 92.7KB.
Starting with the same original photo, here are some examples of the results of cropping out different areas of the photo in order to show details. I make sure that my cropped image is always larger than 600 x 600 so that my final, resized image can be 600 x 600.
Cropping and resizing your photos is important in presenting your items in the best possible way. Take some time to learn these skills. Remember that “Practice makes perfect!” so allow yourself some time to develop your photo editing skills.
Best wishes for much success on Zibbet!
Vicki is committed to assisting her fellow Zibbeters improve their shops for successful online selling. She is the owner of five Zibbet shops: LOC Design Studio, Denim and Pearls, A Stitch and a Prayer, Black Creek Crossing and Think Like a Fish. You can follow Vicki on Twitter and through her LOC Design Studio blog.