Welcome to this Tutorial page of
Your Creative Source
A GUIDE TO RESOLUTION...
Part two: Preparing your image.
These are general guidelines and should not be used
to generate image output without first understanding when
and why to choose each specification.
After manipulation of any image, we recommend you archive
a copy of the final document at full size and resolution.
General resolution guides
Web use: on-screen images
Scan or create your image at 150 ppi (more about scanning below).
Convert the image to 72 ppi and save as your final web document.
Desktop publishing: laser or inkjet
Scan or create your image in a multiple of your printer's resolution.
If the printer resolution is 600 dpi, for example, create the
image at a minimum (at full size) of 1.5 times the resolution - in this
example, 900 dpi. You'll need to do some test prints from there
to find how your printer performs best.
Commercial printing: consult your client,
printer or service bureau. A rule of thumb is to create art
at a minimum of 200 ppi for grayscale, 300 ppi for color at
100% of print size to be viable.
The best bit of advice we can give you here is this: use your scanner
as it was designed to be used. Scan at multiples of your scanner's
optical resolution; avoid interpolation for continuous tone images.
Interpolation increases resolution via resampling. This is
a process of creating pixels to fill the enlarged areas of an image,
finding averages for them based on the adjacent existing pixels and
filling with those averaged tones. What you get is a larger image,
but no detail is gained at all. In fact, the image will actually become
fuzzy in greater interpolated resolutions. The only time interpolation
is truly viable is in scanning line art. In that case, you can often achieve
a good quality image at higher resolution. If you must increase the
resolution of an image beyond your scanner's optical resolution maximum,
you're going to get a better result by scanning at the optical maximum
and resampling the image in a graphics program.
As long as you are scanning within the optical resolution of
your scanner, it is a good idea to do as much of the adjusting
of the image as you can within the scanner interface. It is
more efficient, and therefore quicker to scan the image as close to
your desired result as you can get it with the scanner's software.
So why not always scan or create an image at a high resolution?
Too high a resolution is inefficient from the creation of the file
through adjustment and manipulation all the way to end use.
That is a very costly error, so scan, work and output at
resolutions that are suitable for the end use.
Do you illustrators out there notice
anything familiar? Working at 150%
final size in commercial work...
you ought to be comfortable
with that formula.
To download this complete tutorial as a text file (99K), Click here.
Click here for a printer friendly version.
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