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Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/05/2012 - 5:16 PM

what resolution, in terms of dpi, should I upload my files?


Oldest Reply

Posted by: Murray Bloom on 02/05/2012 - 5:19 PM

DPI doesn't make any difference. Just upload the largest pixel size you can without upsizing the image.


Posted by: Isabella F Abbie Shores on 02/05/2012 - 5:22 PM

FAA will print anything over 100ppi


Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/05/2012 - 5:42 PM

yes, dpi can be changed before printing, but why files cannot be upsized?
I've been able to print 96 inches some files from my 22 megapixel camera with outstanding results.
Now, my camera produces 5624  3736 pixels file... if I want to sell a print, say at 84 inches, the pixels should be at least 8200 pixels.
How this is possible without upsizing?


Posted by: Isabella F Abbie Shores on 02/05/2012 - 5:54 PM

Most upsized images do not print well as any enlarging degrades the image. Each inch it is enlarged means the graphics programme is adding colour which is nearest to it. It cannot intelligently add colours. This means that enlarged images nearly always have sone pixellation

So, as a matter of course, FAA say to people that you should always use your natural size and, just sell prints at that size, unless stitching images together.


Posted by: Donna Proctor on 02/05/2012 - 5:56 PM

Guido - what camera do you shoot with that has 22 megapix? I've yet to read where our finest photographers on the forums boast a 22 megapixel camera. Wow!


Posted by: Mark Smith on 02/05/2012 - 6:03 PM

Save your images in your photo software at 300 dpi that will work or the 240 from your camera will work dpi and ppi are differnt


Posted by: John Rizzuto on 02/05/2012 - 6:04 PM

based on Guido's portfolio he probably has a Canon 5d mkii


Posted by: Donna Proctor on 02/05/2012 - 6:16 PM

Thanks, John. I'll go research that one!


Posted by: Rich Franco on 02/05/2012 - 6:19 PM

I think you are right. I was going to say the 1Ds MKIII, but his images look like they came from the new sensor in the 5DMKII. I have seen samples of images shot on the 5D, at ISO 32,000 or so and they look amazing. And the new 1Ds,whatever soon to be released will be even better, with more video improvements added too,


Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/05/2012 - 6:31 PM

I own two cameras, a EOS 1Ds mkIII 22mp and an EOS 1DMKIV 16mp.
John, the new camera is a 1DX not a new 1Ds and it will be 18mp.


Posted by: Rich Franco on 02/05/2012 - 8:11 PM


Images look very good, need to see more!



Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/05/2012 - 8:22 PM

Printers have their own upsize software, which is very expensive.
In comparison, consumer level upsizing software does not work very well.
The main point you are missing is that if you upload your highest resolution image, FAA will be able to print it at the largest size their technology allows, and any size smaller. If you think about this, the DPI is therefore irrelevent because it is adjusted at PRINT time, not at upload time. So you can just forget about it.

All upsized images actually lose a little resolution, in mathematical terms. You may find this hard to believe, but in mathematical and practical terms, it is true.

Resolution is NOT pixel count, resolution is more meaningfully defined as accurate information about the original object from which the image was produced.


Posted by: Rich Franco on 02/05/2012 - 10:56 PM

Greg, Beth, et al,

How do you explain this then?:

A 44 x 60 image, just sold, today I guess, taken with and captured with a phone, an iPhone,4g, specifically. I think we all need to reassess, what we create and how we create it. It's not the gear, as I have said many times, but the artist and their vision that defines what art is and what sells.



Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/05/2012 - 11:09 PM

Rich: It's not the gear. It's the pixels.
A very good computer programmer once said, with a grin, programming is easy.
You have a bunch of 1's.
You have a bunch of 0's.
You just have to put them in the right order.

And so it is with digital images, and art.

That shot doesn't look to me like it would hold up well at 44" x 60".
It's an HDR photo, and it is obvious from a math/physics point of view that it is possible to increase resolution of an image a tiny bitby combining multiple exposures, if it's the same image at different exposures and/or focal settings. And of course, image stitching can give huge potential image resolution.

However, if you were to paint in individual pixels, and display those pixels at 20" each, it could look good viewed from the right distance.
I'm not impressed by the sharpness of the morning rays photo, by any means. It looks exactly like what it is, an excellent cell phone photo, well envisioned, well shot, with beautiful light in the trees, and marginal resolution.


Posted by: Isabella F Abbie Shores on 02/05/2012 - 11:14 PM

It is not something I just come up with for the fun of it. It is a fact that enlarging images degrades images for the reason I have stated already. It is a fact that if you expand an image, then the added pixels must grab colour from somewhere and a normal programme is not intelligent enough to fill in the additions with anything but block colour from the neighbouring pixels. This causes the pixellation that stops FAA from printing works and is almost lesson one in most good digital lessons. However as I have also said before, some professionals can do things to enable it, just, but, FAA do not advise enlarging images at all, ever.


Posted by: Isabella F Abbie Shores on 02/05/2012 - 11:16 PM

Greg and I cross posting again lol


Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/06/2012 - 12:43 AM

I just hate to see artists given bum advice about upsizing that results in lost image quality and sales. So I always immediately jump on such threads. Besides, Beth is too polite. There are extremely rare cases where a graphic artist of skill can pull off a well executed upsize. It requires some very precise skills, and there are definite limits. Most people who think they can do it, in practice simply can't.


Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/06/2012 - 4:42 AM

you can see more on my website,


Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/06/2012 - 4:58 AM

as far as upsizing files is concerned, I'm definitely aware that most softwares don't do a good job, though my question is, how can I sell a large print if FAA allows to set prices according to pixels?
I know most of my pictures can be printed up to even 84 - 96 inches, but FAA does not allow to set prices for such size unless you upload larger files, and in order to upload larger files you just have to upsize...
so what I am missing?


Posted by: Isabella F Abbie Shores on 02/06/2012 - 5:07 AM

Photographers rarely sell the largest prints unless stitching images. Those large ones are normally for the digital artists whose original files are that size to begin with or larger. Most of my work falls short of several of the larger sizes but my digital work can top it.


Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/06/2012 - 5:17 AM

Immediately after you upload an image, you have to edit the image info, including, title, keywords, description, etc.
Part of that information is a list of sizes at which the FAA software is "willing" to offer your prints of that image.
You fill in the amount of money you want to charge for YOURSELF for each print size.
The actual print costs extra to the customer, for the printing and shipping and such. YOUR price is what YOU get paid.
You can set up default prices for each size.
So FAA software has already decided the largest size that is practical to print based on the numbers of pixels in your upload.
Print sizes above that are blanked out, and you are told you would need a higher resolution image to print at those larger sizes.
You can update this info at any time.
Just go to any image in your portfolio, and click the button to edit it.

When an actual order occurs, a quality control person at FAA will do a check to make sure that the quality is adequate for the size ordered. If it's not, you'll get an email explaining the problem, and giving you a chance to work on a resolution. In most cases, the Quality Control person is right, and it shouldn't be printed that large, it's too blurry, or whatever. In a few rare cases, the quality control person makes a bad judgement call. This can be negotiated if you get an email notifying you of a rejected order because of quality. But during really busy times, like just before Christmas, for example, there may not be time to resolve the problem in a quick way. Most of these rare not-really-an-issue problems seem to related to "blurry hard to photograph" images in watercolor on heavily textured paper, or lightly painted on lightly coated canvass. If that texture is misread, it can appear pixellated. The other rare cause of "false" problems is where a photographer uses selective focus that's not where the Quality Inspector expects it, and the inspector thinks the image is too blurry.

Most actual unprintable images are caused by people who don't believe that upsizing causes image quality issues, and try to upside images anyway. Or they can be caused by "high resolution" images that just aren't aren't sharp enough. Not a big enough sensor, dirty lens, out of focus, bad depth of field, etc.

A tip for newcomers: The image title, along with your name, IS the web location of your image. URL, both here on FAA and on your personal website. Changing the title is easy, but it will also break browser bookmarks and render search engine data inaccurate. It's good to try to pick a title you can stick with when uploading, or at least get it nailed down before you market the image. Otherwise, any links to your image page will be broken if you change the name.


Posted by: Guido Tramontano Guerritore on 02/06/2012 - 5:58 AM

thanks for your helpful explanation!
So it seems that I will be able to edit the prices even at larger resolution regardless of the pixel size of the image. Great!
Thanks again,



Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/06/2012 - 7:50 AM

Exactly. You upload highest possible resolution. FAA offers prints at all sizes the software "thinks" are not too big for the upload size, and adjusts PPI/resizing as necessary to get each print size.


Posted by: JC Findley on 02/06/2012 - 9:15 AM

Hadn't thought about that title change and book mark thing..... Thanks Gregory......


Posted by: Gregory Scott on 02/06/2012 - 11:08 AM

You're not allowed to use that info, JC. I said it was newbie advice.


Posted by: Scott Hansen on 02/24/2012 - 9:11 AM

Great advice Gregory!


Posted by: Tony Murray on 02/24/2012 - 12:58 PM

DPI "Dots Per Inch"

PPI "Pixels per inch" The former is used for printing.


Posted by: Chuck Staley on 02/24/2012 - 7:30 PM

One must also take in consideration the limitations of the printers used by the company doing the printing here. Is 44 inches the widest? Beth?


Posted by: Loree Johnson on 02/24/2012 - 7:38 PM

I seem to recall from another thread that 50" is the max width.


This discussion is closed.