Cropping - For Looks or Ratio?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by CWN, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. CWN

    CWN TPF Noob!

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    When you crop your images, do you crop them to a specific ratio or for a certain look?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Depends on the final output or format.

    If I want to print it as an 8x10, to fit a frame, then that's what I'll crop it to.
    If it's just for web viewing, then I might crop it more freely (not to a specific ratio) but I usually stick to a standard ratio in case I want to print/frame it etc.

    Of course, you can print any size/ratio...but it's just easier to use a standard size.
     
  3. CWN

    CWN TPF Noob!

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    Do you find one crop ratio better than others if you're not sure what size you'll want to print?
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Too many factors to really answer that. It might vary from shot to shot...or just by how I'm feeling that day.

    If it doesn't matter, they I'll probably just leave it at 2:3 and not waste too much time thinking about it.
     
  5. Pugs

    Pugs TPF Noob!

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    Depends. For portrait sessions, I'll crop a 2:3, a 5:7, and a 4:5. For each, I'll be doing the best crop I can, keeping whatever "feel" I was going for with the composition. I do that because you ALWAYS get people asking for the standard 5x7 and 8x10 sizes so that they can put them in frames right off the shelf.

    For "fine art" prints that I'll be matting and framing myself, I tend to crop to a 2:3 format by default, but will go to something else in a heartbeat if it suits the photo.
     
  6. PHILLIP MAC

    PHILLIP MAC TPF Noob!

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    Always crop for the best image but never dump the origional so you can always change your mind
     
  7. CWN

    CWN TPF Noob!

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    Thanks everyone...

    I was just trying to make things simple on SmugMug for ordering purposes. I guess I'll have to make different galleries for each crop if I want control over it.
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I use Photocart. It shows clients a cropped preview when they choose various print sizes.
     
  9. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I crop for both :)
    If I know I won't be printing it, then I'll crop for look. IF I will be printing, then it matters what the final product will be - single image, then it'll be cropped accordingly (2x3, 4x5, 5x7, etc), if part of college then again according to what the final product will be. ;)
     
  10. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

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    Are you selling photos? Or is it just to order for yourself? If these are just photos for yourself, when you order prints, Smugmug will let you crop your photos during checkout. I usually keep a 2:3 ratio when I upload to Smugmug. If I want a 5x7 or 8x10, I can crop it however I like when I checkout. Not sure if this was what you were looking for, but it should keep you from needing to have separate galleries of photos just for different ratios.
     
  11. CWN

    CWN TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, thanks!

    I did my son's 2 year portraits over the weekend and wanted to order some of various sizes for relatives and wasn't sure how SmugMug handled it.

    Much appreciated.
     
  12. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

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    They actually have 3 options when you checkout. I don't know what they're called offhand, but the first is automatic crop (which usually just crops the middle of the shot), the second is the one where you can choose the crop you want, and the last one is uncropped, which puts white bars on the tops (or sides) of the frame. The last one I use rarely, but it's useful if you cropped a weird ratio for whatever reason and you plan on trimming the print when you get it, and putting it in a custom frame.
     

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