NEW!!! GET HELP FROM A DISTANCE! Call (512)560-2609 or email and set up a time for a session.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Working with Images Online

When I added this (741 KB) picture Blogger automatically resized it so that it would fit the screen.

This is the same image that I resized myself to 8 KB
For the longest time I was so frustrated when I saw a picture online that I liked and then printed it and the picture printed out tiny OR someone sent me a picture and it would not fit on my screen because it was so huge.
This is because the pictures that you see on the screen are digital representations of the pictures that people have put onto their webpages or emailed to you. Pictures are measured in DPI or dots per inch. In order to make digital pictures small so that they download quickly people often compress their photos. The computer takes out some of the dots in a way that the picture still looks good on screen! This can effect the resolution of the picture (or the quality) so that you cannot drag the picture to a larger size. When you try it becomes little color squares..

Most (all?) digital screens only show up to 72 DPI (or dots per inch). If the picture you are seeing has high resolution (more than 72 DPI) sometimes the picture will look HUGE on your screen. One confusing thing is that many programs (like word) allow you to click on the image and drag the corner to make it smaller.  When you do this you are only changing the LOOK of the picture, not the DPI, so even though it looks small it will take a LONG time to download and when someone tries to print the picture it will come out huge.

You cannot make a picture with a low number of dots per inch bigger. It will not look good. Artists (and lots of other people) save both a high quality, high resolution picture and the smaller one that they can use to send to people or post online. 

I hope that this is a helpful explanation of images online. If you have questions please post them in the comments. Tomorrow's post will be about FILE SIZES.


  1. An easy way to edit pictures online is You can upload a picture and resize it for free. There are also many other things that you can do for free. If you like Picnik you can sign up for a paid account and get more options.

  2. Unfortunately Picnik has closed. Here is what their site says:

    As announced earlier, Picnik closed on April 19, 2012. We’ve packed up and moved some of our most popular tools and effects to Google+. Hope you visit us there.

    We wish to express how fortunate and proud we are to have worked on Picnik. To help you along with future editing needs visit Creative Kit in Google+.

    Some of you may be asking:
    Since joining Google in 2010, the Picnik team has been working on Picnik while helping to create photo editing magic in Google’s products. But now we get to focus.

    What about my photos saved on other sites?
    Your photos stored or saved on other sites will remain intact and are not affected by our closure.

    What now?
    To keep your photo editing mojo rolling, visit Creative Kit in Google+.

    I have not tried it, but it sounds like Google+ has taken it over.