It’s really important that the aspect ratio of your photo is right.
Please make sure you crop your photo to the correct proportions of how you’d like the final piece to show. If you do not supply a correctly cropped image we will crop it ourselves to fit. We will use our best judgement when cropping your supplied artwork but we wouldn’t want to crop out your favourite bit so please supply print ready files.
The aspect ratio of a digital photograph is the relationship between the width and height of the photograph. There are two common aspect ratios produced by digital cameras: 3:2 and 4:3.
The number before the colon represents the width of the image and the number after is the height. Both numbers represent a relationship, not a specific measurement.
There are other aspect ratios besides the two mentioned here, but they are less common. Some examples of other aspect ratios are 5:4, 16:9 (HD video) and 1:1 (a square image). We do also supply prints at 5:4, see the table below.
Different digital cameras will produce images with different aspect ratios, even if you don’t change the camera settings. Aspect ratios will differ between camera and drone manufacturers and occasionally even between different model cameras from the same company.
Aspect Ratio Examples
When checking the differences between the aspect ratios you can count the train carriages to see how cropping affects what you can and can’t see in the image.
This is the original image taken in the format typically used for video at 16:9. This is not an aspect ratio that we supply any print at. All of the photos below are cropped from this original 16:9 image.
Aspect Ratios and Photo Prints
While it may not seem all that important what aspect ratio your camera produces, it can have an impact on your digital photo prints. Why? The dimensions of photographic prints are basically just aspect ratios.
|Print Size||Aspect Ratio|
|A4 (12 x 8 inch)||3:2|
|A4 Plus (12 x 10 inch)||6:5|
|A3 (16 x 12 inch)||4:3|
|A2 (20 x 16 inch)||5:4|
|A2 Plus (24 x 16 inch)||3:2|
|A1 (30 x 20 inch)||3:2|
|A0 (40 x 30 inch)||4:3|
|Panoramic 20 x 12 inch||5:3|
|Panoramic 30 x 12 inch||5:2|
|Panoramic 40 x 12 inch||10:3|
|Panoramic 30 x 16 inch||15:8|
|Panoramic 40 x 16 inch||5:2|
But what happens when the aspect ratio of the photo uploaded does not match the aspect ratio of the print product ordered? Your image gets cropped to fit the aspect ratio of the print.
You can see from the examples above if you upload a photo without setting the aspect ratio for your chosen print quite a bit of the original image can be lost! That’s a big surprise when you were expecting to see more of your original photograph in the print.
So what do I do?
What You See is What You Print
There are two things that you can do to overcome the difference between the aspect ratio of your camera and the aspect ratio of prints.
Determine Your Favourite Print Size
If you can determine your favourite print size, you can set your camera so that it produces images with the same aspect ratio as the print. See the table above for print sizes compared to aspect ratio. Since the aspect ratio of the camera matches the ratio of the print, no parts of your photo will be cropped when they are printed. The photo you see on your monitor is the photo you will see in the print.
Crop Your Photos Before Printing
When the aspect ratio of your camera does not match the ratio of the print, crop the image yourself before you send it to be printed. If you don’t do this, it will be up to us to decide how much of the image to keep and how much to crop. When you pre-crop the image to the correct aspect ratio, you ensure that important parts of your photo don’t get chopped off. We will use our best judgment to crop appropriately.