PVCC: Sizing images

Photo Venture Camera Club is running its October competition in an online format.  That is, instead of judging prints, the judge will work with images displayed on a monitor.  In addition PVCC is assembling a book of images by members to be published by Blurb. The competition entries are due October 7.  They are to be emailed to an address to be determined (watch the newsletter for details).  Entries for the Blurb book are to be sent to photoventureblurb@gmail.com by October 12.

Images are to be prepared in the .jpg format using the sRGB color space.  .jpg images should be rendered at the highest quality level.  Images for the electronic submission competition need to be at least 2000 pixels on the long side. Size of images for the Blurb book has not yet been to be firmly established but you would be safe with an image that would fit in a container 2700 X 1900 pixels.

This article provides general information on how to prepare images using Photoshop or Elements.  There are differences in the user interface for these photo editing programs and it will be left to the reader to find the critical dialog box, e.g. the image size dialog box, in their software.  Once arriving at that point, the procedures will be at least similar and perhaps identical across versions.

Here is an image that is large and will be shrunk down to size.


Here is the corresponding image size box:


Preparation for the competition images is a one stage process while preparation for the Blurb book requires two stages.  Fortunately, the first stage in preparing for Blurb is the same as that for getting ready for the competition.  That first stage involves setting the pixel dimensions to the desired values.

  1. Note that toward the bottom of the dialog two boxes are checked: Constrain Proportions and Resample Image.  Both must be checked to change Pixel Dimensions while keeping the image aspect ratio constant.
  2. Further note that Bicubic (at the very bottom of the dialog) is selected as the algorithm for changing size.  There are as many as three bicubic choices, which you choose matters less than that you not select Nearest Neighbor or Bilinear.
  3. Once the appropriate boxes are checked, type in the desired value for the longer of the two dimensions, Width or Height.
  4. Make sure one of the bicubic choices is selected.
  5. Click on OK and save the image.  You are done with the first stage.

That is all that is required to set the image size for the competition.  We didn’t have to change the resolution because resolution of an image displayed on a monitor is not determined by Photoshop.  It is determined by the monitor itself. Preparing an image for printing (as in Blurb) is a different story and requires an additional step.

The next stage for Blurb preparation requires reopening the Image Size dialog box. You may wonder why we closed the dialog box and then immediately reopened it.  This is the simplest and cleanest way to go.


The Blurb book images require a resolution of 300 pixels/inch and as it now stands the image has a resolution of 240.  We need to boost the resolution.

  1. Reopen the dialog and uncheck the Resample Image box.  This will ensure that when you change the resolution the Pixel Dimensions will remain the same.
  2. Enter a value of 300 in the Resolution box.
  3. Click OK and save the image.  You are done.

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