Providing Images for Print

This guide is meant to help you select and send high-quality, high-resolution images for your printed stationery order. If you have any questions, or would like to send me a test image, feel free to email me!

What does 'high-resolution' mean?

Every digital image is made up of pixels (squares of color) and the size the image is viewed at determines its resolution. More pixels = larger image.

Images must be printed at 300 ppi (pixels per inch). An easy way to determine the maximum size that an image can be printed at is to divide the number of pixels in the image by 300. For example:
You have an image that is 600 x 300 pixels.
600 x 300 divided by 300 = 2 x 1, so the largest size this image can be printed at is 2″ x 1″. Not very big!

Thus, an image that you would like to print at a size of 5″ x 7″ would need to be at least 1500 x 2100 pixels.

How can I see the pixel dimensions of my image?

On a PC:
Right click on the image file. Select either the Details or Summary tab, depending on your operating system. The dimensions show the pixel height and width of your photo.

On a Mac:
Right click on the image file, and select Get Info. A pop-up window will open with the dimensions of your image displaying in the More Info section. The dimensions show the pixel height and width of your photo.

Phones/Tablets:
It is easiest to figure out dimensions on a desktop computer, but if that is not possible there are several apps you can use. The “Photo Investigator” app is one available on the iOS App Store.

What pixel dimensions are good for print?

The dimensions you need will depend on how large you would like the image to appear on your stationery.

An easy way to determine the maximum size that a certain image can be printed at is to divide the number of pixels in the image by 300.

For example:
You have an image that is 600 x 300 pixels.
600 x 300 divided by 300 = 2 x 1, so the largest size this image can be printed at is 2″ x 1″. Not very big!

So, an image that you would like to print at a size of 5″ x 7″ would need to be at least 1500 x 2100 pixels.

The higher the better!

Can I use a photo from Facebook or other social media?

Generally, no. When photos are uploaded to social media, they are downsized for the web and lose quality. These versions are meant for web viewing, not print. It is always best to find and use the original photo file.

The only exception to the above is for small thumbnail photos. For example in the Wedding Day Post, I can often use photos of your wedding party that are pulled from social media as small thumbnails.

My photographer took photos of us. What files should I send you, or ask them for?

Your photographer likely gave you a disk, drive, or download link to your final photos. Often you will receive two sets: one set for the web, and one set for print. The print versions may be labeled “high resolution,” “high-res” or “300 dpi.”

If you downloaded the photos and then put them onto your phone or Facebook, you may need to go back and get the original versions.

If you are unsure or didn’t receive high-res versions, contact your photographer and ask for a “high-resolution image at 300 dpi for print.

Will a photo I took on my iPhone work?

Yes! But I will need the original version of the photo.

When a photo is edited, posted online, emailed, downloaded to a computer, etc. it can easily be downsized or lose its original quality without you realizing.

To email a high-res image from your iPhone or iPad: 

  • Select the image and add it to your email message.
  • Fill out the sender/subject info and hit send.
  • A popup should come up with file size choices.
  • Choose “Actual Size.”

If you don’t see the above popup, that usually means your image is too small for print.