picture size

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by cypilk, Apr 28, 2004.

  1. cypilk

    cypilk TPF Noob!

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    i'm using a 35mm camera. ... and i was wondering how big i can blow pictures up.. like up to what size can the biggest picture be? of course, without the picture becoming ...grainy
     
  2. Skyeg

    Skyeg TPF Noob!

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    iv done 20x30.... with a good lens and very very very slow slide film
     
  3. Big Mike

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

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    Movies are shot on 35mm film. A lot of billboard photos are probably shot on 35mm film as well.

    You can blow it up as big as you want to...if you are far enough away when viewing the print.

    It also depends on what you consider to be too much grain. I find that people who hang out on photography forums are a lot more picky than people who don't. :wink:

    There are lots of factors involved as well. Each film has it's own grain "personality". I think that slide film may be better for getting large crisp prints than negative film but I'm not sure.

    Lens quality may be an issue when enlarging. A tripod is probably a must for getting sharp enlargements...mirror lock up would help too.

    Sorry for the rambling :?
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    That depends on a number of things: film speed, film type, format, how many mega-pixels, did you use a tripod, etc... But mostly it comes down to personal opinion.

    A general rule of thumb is that you can enlarge up to 10 times the original before image quality begins to seriously deteriorate. So if you are starting with a 35mm neg that's a 10"x15" print. With a 4x5 neg thats a 40"x50" print.

    For my personal work I like to keep 35mm prints at 8"x12" or smaller, although in the past I've made 16"x20" prints from Tmax 100 that I think most people would find acceptable.
     
  5. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

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    I find that the genre of the image matters to me, also. An abstract can be enlarged more than a landscape. I think I'm the most critical of landscapes out of everything.
     
  6. cypilk

    cypilk TPF Noob!

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    wow...billboards are HUGE..and they still take those shots with 35 mm film?
     
  7. Big Mike

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

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    I agree, subject matter is a factor as well. I think that landscapes can be blown up quite well if they don't have too much uniform space (like a big area of pure blue sky).

    Things like big group shots need to be really clear because you want to be able to see detail in the faces.

    Along the lines of previsualizing the shot...if you think about what you are going to do with the print...you can decide how (& with what) you want to take the shot. If you know beforehand that you will need a big print. Use a MF camera or take steps with your 35mm to ensure the sharpest print possible.
     

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