Resizing your Images

How and Why to Resize Your Digital Photos


Richard Tyler

If you take pictures with a digital camera and then want to share them with others via Facebook or email, you will need to learn to resize these digital images.  We will take a look at why you need to this and how it can be done.

So, let\’s first take a look at the why.  Why do you need to resize your digital photos?

When you take pictures with a digital camera, the digital photo that is produced and uploaded is quite large.  In fact, the newer, better cameras produce even larger images than those of the past because a camera with more mega pixels produces even larger images.

This, by the way, is common fallacy when buying a digital camera—that more mega pixels means that all of your pictures will look better.  The amount of mega pixels in a camera dictates how well the picture will look at a certain size.  So, if you are looking at a 4 x 6 image, you will be hard pressed to see the difference with a 10MP camera and a14MP camera.  However, if you want to view and/or print a large version of that image, you will then notice the difference in the quality of that photo.

Since a camera with a higher mega pixel number produces more detailed output, it also produces larger file sizes.  This is where the problem arises.  After you copy the digital  images from your laptop to your computer (which takes longer with larger files sizes), you probably want to do more than have the photos simply sit there on your computer.  You will want to share them via email or Facebook.

Let\’s have a look at the exact problem that can occur.  Just the other day, my mother wanted to send me photos that she had taken of the grandchildren yesterday and was trying to send them to me via email.  After ‘attaching’ the photos to the email, her email program kept telling her that the attachments were to large.  In the end, my mom was unable to send the email because she had not resized the digital photos.

So, this is why we need to learn how to resize photos:  it allows us to share them with others as we often want to do.

How then, can we resize our digital photos?

It is actually much easier than you might think.   Microsoft offers us a program called the ImageResizer which is part of their ‘PowerToys for Windows XP’ and is also free.  Simply do a search for the ‘Microsoft Image Resizer’ to download this tool.

Once installed, this tool allows you to right-click your photos and resize them with a ‘Resize Pictures’ option.  The Image Resizer also gives you the option to choose what size that you want to make this photo with three pre-set options and a custom option.  I typically choose the second option which is 800×600.

The question often then gets asked:  ‘After I resize photos, won\’t the quality suffer?’

The answer, oddly, is ‘not really’.  The Windows Resizer, though it often can reduce the file size by a factor of more than 10, can resize pictures without a noticeable degradation in quality.  It\’s truly an easy to use and sophisticated program all in one.

After showing my mother how to use the resizer, she now easily sends all of her photos in email and uploads them to Facebook.

And, I know one thing.  If my mom (who is not too technically inclined) can resize photos with ease, you can too.

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About the Author

To learn more about resizing photos, visit the page how to resize pictures where you can find examples of before and after photos. You can also find many other great how to pages, like how to record from DVR to computer.


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