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Maezyra
23-12-2011, 14:12
Hi AP-ers,

Something I have been debating in my head is cropping photos. I do a little PP-ing on my photos and I often crop, but generally, I stick with the photo ratios in case I want to print them down the track (not that I have printed a photo in over a year...). However, sometimes I think losing this ratio would lead to a more pleasing picture - A square frame would suit more than the standard rectangular frame, for example. I came to the realisation that there is no point debating with myself and I have a wonderful resource through this website - So I ask you, dear AP-ers - Where do you stand on this? Keep the ratio for a more "pure" (for want of a better word) result or don't stick with a specific ratio for a digitally more pleasing result?

I'm looking forward to seeing the results of this debate!! Thanks in advance!!

Erin.

ameerat42
23-12-2011, 14:21
(What? Me? OK, don't push! I'll go 1st.)

Hi Erin. Yes to both. I do almost the same as you. Sometimes I print 4:5, 6:7, etc. When I do that I just get the nearest ratio paper and shrink the image a bit to fit. I end up with white borders top or bottom, but they make good photo holders.
Am.

Brian500au
23-12-2011, 15:33
I tend to stick to standard sizes, but every now and again I have to crop outside the standard - but once again where I can I try to stick to a standard size

William
23-12-2011, 16:16
From my latest experiences , Stick to standard ratios if you plan on getting them printed Professionally , ie dont take 40 images to the printer all different ratios , If your doing one off's do the cropping , But remember what you cropped to 16:9 , 17:6 etc , Lately I've tried to stick with the Camera ratio (Canon) 3:2 aspect , Means more thought in taking the image , Comp wise , But a shite lot easier on the printer and framer :xmas31:

Maezyra
24-12-2011, 15:25
Okay! Great!! Thanks for everyone's opinions!! Keep them coming!!

ricktas
24-12-2011, 15:42
If it is just going on the net, I crop as I feel I want to. But for printing, I crop based on standards, to ensure its easier to get printed, framed etc.

Seabee
24-12-2011, 16:06
Same as Ricktas.............for the net, it's a free for all for mine.
When I PP i do so to the entire original 'copy' except vignetting.........then I will crop to suit, then add vignetting (usually in RAW)

I treat every pic as though it will be printed so crop to standard printing sizes, which believe me does not leave you wanting in dimensions.
I do my own framing as well, so no probs for myself, but if I have done pics for a friend (family portraits etc) I will ensure that they are cropped to an 'easily acquired store bought' frame size.

Wayne
24-12-2011, 18:12
If it is just going on the net, I crop as I feel I want to. But for printing, I crop based on standards, to ensure its easier to get printed, framed etc.

What he^^ said

Maezyra
24-12-2011, 20:00
I have to agree, generally, with everything that has been said. I generally stick with the photo ratios, but I am doing something specific for a digital album, I sometimes go with what feels good. Sometimes, although rarely, when I put something on here, for example, I will do away with the photo ratio. More often than not, however, I stick with the photo ratio and I think this has been occasionally part of my undoing in the digital world.

Thanks everyone for your opinions. I hope everyone continues to contribute to this! It is quite enlightening for me! :)

I @ M
25-12-2011, 07:50
Keep the original image in the native ratio you started with.
Determine what size and ratio it needs to be for printing / framing if the project is for someone else.
Be prepared to pay for custom framing if it is an "odd" sized print and you are having it framed.
Within the limitations of the final file size for printing, crop a copy of the image to any size that has one side equal or close to equal to a paper width size that the printing company uses.
If they are any good they will simply print at the size you want and return a correctly trimmed image to you.
The printing companies work on varying paper widths on the rolls and simply charge you per square metre of paper used, printed or unprinted, at the end of the job.

farmmax
27-12-2011, 00:49
I try to frame the original photo in the camera so that the photo does not need cropping. If I do crop, it is without regard to standard photo printing sizes at all. I don't print all that often, but when I do, odd sized crops are placed on standard size canvas. The excess padding is trimmed of the printed photos when I receive them.

Xenedis
27-12-2011, 01:35
I tend to be fussy about aspect ratios (and fussy about just about everything, really), so I tend to maintain the 3:2 aspect ratio.

More often than not, I'll frame my images without the intention of cropping.

Any cropping I do tends to be very minor, but I maintain the 3:2 aspect ratio, which looks 'balanced' to me.

Certainly at times a different aspect ratio can make an image stronger, but where possible I advocate framing in-camera so that cropping is not necessary.

The notable exception would be panoramic-format images, where a 3:2 or 4:3 aspect ratio leaves too much land/water or too much sky (or both) in the scene, making cropping a necessity.

In that case, still frame as best as possible in camera, ensuring that you capture what you want in the scene, knowing that the extra subject matter on the top and bottom edges of the frame will be left on the editing room floor.

Gunna
07-02-2012, 14:55
I generally keep to the 3x2 ratio, but am in 2 minds when it comes to enlargements of family photos.
Because most off the shelf frames are 8"x10" [why??], the photo cropped to that size has top & bottom cut off [not good when I have composed tightly].
Not only are 8x12 frames harder to come by, because of popular useage of the 8x10, the 8x12 looks a bit out of proportion.
What is common practice amongst members?

Xenedis
07-02-2012, 16:26
most off the shelf frames are 8"x10"

Yeah, that's really quite annoying.

I frame my images for the 2:3 aspect ratio, and 4:5 forces me to lose subject matter I'd otherwise want to see.

Additionally, I just don't like that aspect ratio at all.

junqbox
07-02-2012, 16:59
I crop to whatever best suits the image. When printing (professionally), I'll often put the image into a black background frame and print them all at 12x18" and trim them down later. Since mine, and most others, are 2:3 ratio cameras and the majority of retail available frames are geared for 4:5 ratio (when you get to any decent size) I don't see the point in trying to maintain the ratio.
To help counter this, I bought a pile of frames at largish size, and get the matt boards cut to suit. Otherwise decent quality, custom sized framing will cost a bomb.

Wayno
07-02-2012, 17:09
For what its worth I keep the ratio for standard print sizes in most cases as its easier for printing. But some of the rules are made to be broken when you have that special picture.

Speedway
07-02-2012, 17:15
I usually crop my photos in 3:2 ratio for printing at 6x4, 6x9, 8x12 and 12x18 which I offer on my web site I also crop to 6:2 ratio for panoramic prints on double length A4 paper which I print up on my canon ip4700 printer. When framing if I can't get the right size frame I get the next size up and mount the photo on black card cut to the frame size. For the web I crop to suit the photo or 16:9 to suit my monitor.
Keith.

Xenedis
07-02-2012, 17:24
I crop to whatever best suits the image.

I compose to whatever best suits the image.


I don't see the point in trying to maintain the ratio.

It's purely an aesthetic issue for me; I just don't like 4:5 (or 4:3).

Speedway
07-02-2012, 17:35
I compose to whatever best suits the image.
I do that too, but it is hard to compose for a single shot panorama as when shooting the full field at the start of a Go Kart race or 4-5 Karts in a close tussle.
Keith.

ricktas
08-02-2012, 06:41
Yeah, that's really quite annoying.

I frame my images for the 2:3 aspect ratio, and 4:5 forces me to lose subject matter I'd otherwise want to see.

Additionally, I just don't like that aspect ratio at all.

Easy. My D3 can be set to shoot in 5:4 ratio...So if I want to do any 8x10's, I can shoot the photo in the right aspect ratio to start with:D

Speedway
08-02-2012, 09:22
Easy. My D3 can be set to shoot in 5:4 ratio...So if I want to do any 8x10's, I can shoot the photo in the right aspect ratio to start with:D
So can the 7D.:D:D

junqbox
08-02-2012, 09:44
I compose to whatever best suits the image.
In most circumstances I would too, but there's often surrounding elements potentially causing grief. More so when working within different genres.



It's purely an aesthetic issue for me; I just don't like 4:5 (or 4:3).

I don't particulalry like 4:3 myself, but I have an LF camera which has options to shoot 5:4, 6x7cm, 6x9cm, MF cameras which are 4.5x60cm and of course 35mm/DX. So for me, I don't feel the need to constrain to what the camera format is.

Xenedis
08-02-2012, 15:59
Easy. My D3 can be set to shoot in 5:4 ratio...So if I want to do any 8x10's, I can shoot the photo in the right aspect ratio to start with:D

Heh. See, for me, 4:5 is never the right aspect ratio. I don't think my camera can do that anyway, but if it did, it'd never get used. :-P

Speedway
08-02-2012, 16:40
My 7D can but never has.
Keith.

Miss Jane
13-05-2012, 17:50
This thead has been good reading but I'm still trying to figure out some print sizes psot cropping.
I have a full frame camera, I need to crop most of the photos I took at a show, more of less to zoom in adn enlarge the subject. I have already gone an cropped about 300 ranging between 5x7, 4x6 and 8x10. This might be a dumb question but will these print out on a standard 4x6 paper or 6x8 paper say from Big W or harvey norman?
The photos will be for sale as printed or digital so I probably need a standard for me or customers to print. Should I just go with 4x6 or 6x8 for everything? Or as I asked above will those other cropped sizes still print out on a 4x6 or 6x8 which I think is the size I will be offering?

I @ M
13-05-2012, 17:58
Miss Jane, with all due respect, if you have to ask the questions about image print format needed when you intend to sell the prints I reckon you are about 6 steps in front of your ability.

To put it simply, most DSLRs have a native image format of 2:3 and that applies to full frame or APSC sensor size.
Some are able to be configured in camera to record in 4:5 and 9:16 format.

What did you capture the images at?

If you answer 2:3 then your images will fit on a 4x6 inch print ( close to but not exactly ) but other sizes like 8x10 and 5x7 will not fit properly.

Apart from all that I would do yourself a huge favour and not kill any repeat business by using Big W or Hardly Normal to do any printing that you wish to sell or enhance your reputation by.

ricktas
13-05-2012, 18:05
This thead has been good reading but I'm still trying to figure out some print sizes psot cropping.
I have a full frame camera, I need to crop most of the photos I took at a show, more of less to zoom in adn enlarge the subject. I have already gone an cropped about 300 ranging between 5x7, 4x6 and 8x10. This might be a dumb question but will these print out on a standard 4x6 paper or 6x8 paper say from Big W or harvey norman?
The photos will be for sale as printed or digital so I probably need a standard for me or customers to print. Should I just go with 4x6 or 6x8 for everything? Or as I asked above will those other cropped sizes still print out on a 4x6 or 6x8 which I think is the size I will be offering?

They will print at the aspect ratio's you have cropped them to, So trying to print a 5x7 on a 4x6 papersize will not work, it will need to be printed on a 5x7 paper. As Andrew above, says, this is fairly basic printing stuff. I also agree with him about not using BigW or HN for prints you want to sell. Find a good quality, dedicated photo printer.

MarkChap
13-05-2012, 19:14
ALSO - please understand that if you crop to a SIZE, that is the size that the image will BEST print at.
That is if you crop to a 6x4 size, then that is all you have, a 6x4, which will not print well if enlarged.

It is always best to crop to a ratio, and as long as you are not cropping too much or hard, is more likely to print quite well and most sizes (up to a point) that suit the same ratio

Miss Jane
14-05-2012, 02:57
Andrew, now, thanks to the replies i am 5 steps in front of my ability :) I have not printed/enlarged photos since the film days. And yes I am new to this side of photography ie printing & selling.
This show was my first "professional" job that I was asked to do in conditions that I have never tried before, so it was a huge learning curve.
The answer from Mark "It is always best to crop to a ratio, and as long as you are not cropping too much or hard, is more likely to print quite well and most sizes (up to a point) that suit the same ratio" is what I was looking for. But all the answers were very helpful.
Next step would be to find a photo printer, I think Camera House is the only one in town but I will check it out.

Maezyra
27-05-2012, 18:38
Wow! This thread has taken off! I'm loving all of this debate about cropping! Thank you to everyone who has contributed so far!

swifty
21-06-2012, 18:08
I crop to whatever works for the image. The key is non-destructive editing.
So the original is preserved which will often save u printing headaches as everyone has suggested.
Or keep whatever ratio you've cropped to but paste it on a blank 'canvas' in a common ratio and send that in for print. So you get no surprise cropping when the print comes back, jz a slightly smaller image with some white around it which you block out when mounting for display anyways.
Eg. BigW has an offer right now for $1 11X14 prints. What sort of ratio is 11X14!!!! Yea I know, printing from BigW with no ctrl over prints but at $1 who can complain, but I digress.
So yea, paste your cropped photo onto a 11X17 canvas and print without worrying what gets cut off. Then physically cut the white out of the prints if required.