Picture Perfect: Aspect Ratio

August 17, 2009

help_bad_stretchedIf you have yet to do so, read my article about resolution, in which I covered re-sizing images, a topic that has everything to do with aspect ratio. One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing fun-house mirror pictures.

If you’re doing an ad for a fun house, circus or the county fair, this might be acceptable. But for a respectable graphic design project, pictures should be resized properly according to the intent of the artist. Aspect ratio is the ratio of an image’s width to its height. DON’T TAKE A PICTURE AND STRETCH IT! The worst thing to see is someone’s picture being turned into a funhouse mirror! When you enlarge or decrease the size of a picture, you want to make sure that you do so proportionately. If you increase the height of a picture by one inch, make sure that the width is also increased by exactly one inch. You can ensure this action takes place in any program that allows you to alter pictures by holding down the shift key. When you take the corner of the image with your arrow, hold down your “shift” key on your keyboard and drag the corner with your mouse. This will ensure that your picture’s aspect ratio will remain proportionate.

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