Photography for Billboards

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by ckphotography, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. ckphotography

    ckphotography TPF Noob!

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    I have the potential to have my photography on a few local billboards. This would be a first for me and would appreciate everyones input. Primarily:

    1. I want to be sure that I am capturing the images in the correct format so that they can be not only usable but stunning for billboards. I plan on taking these photos (of diamond rings. I know the difficulty in capturing them!) with my Canon MarkD with a product photo tent using my strobes to light the scene. I will be shooting in RAW. I would like to capture as much of the facets of the diamonds as possible and plan on using a lower powered light in front of the rings as well.

    2. When I process and save the images, is there anything special I need to know to save them for billboards? I have done product shoots in the past but nothing for billboards and I want to make sure I get this right!

    Thanks so much for your input!
     
  2. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Contact the billboard company and ask what their image submission requirements are.

    Billboard images are printed at less than 30dpi and the individual dots are about the size of a nickel.

    You need to know if they want bleed, or no bleed. If you will be doing any text, they may want the text in CMYK while the image remains RGB.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2010
  3. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Or check with the printer who print the material for the Billboard. I know the printer I worked with in the past require graphic work save in CMYK format when we need to print big banner.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2010
  4. ckphotography

    ckphotography TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the replies! I did call the billboard company and got the information I needed. Thanks again!
     
  5. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    For any form of printed job its always good to talk to the company doing the printing. In this case they may want CMYK or RGB. Many printers now use grand format digital printers and often work in RGB.

    When you process your RAW files and save them as bitmap images, DO NOT save them as JPEG. Save them in either your editor's native format (e.g. PSD if using Photoshop) or TIFF. Only use JPEG for copies of the files that you will never reopen for further edits.

    The printing company may request TIFF format and may prefer JPEG. Either way, its quite possible that you will need to reopen the files to make some adjustment specific to the billboard use. Reopening and resaving JPEGs results is quality loss. If your master image file is TIFF or PSD, no loss occurs when reopening and resaving. Only make the JPEG as the last save.
     

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