How To Print Your Photos With Photoshop

Surely this must be so basic that it doesn’t warrant talking about? 

Let’s see. Have you ever tried printing your photo with Photoshop but no matter what you do, the image size just will not quite fit your photo paper? For example, you check and re-check your image size setting and your canvas size setting to see that you have set that right to match your glossy premium paper 4″ x 6″ (100mm x 150mm). Still the output is not quite right and after a few futile attempts, you have blown 6 pieces of expensive paper. Sounds familiar? If yes, read on; if not, go and chill out elsewhere.

OK, so if you’re still here,  you know what I’m talking about. So, let’s get out of the rut first. Let me give you the short of it quickly, then we can spend some time on the long part to refine the technique.

Here it is: Assuming you are re-sizing the image, make sure that you do NOT select Resample Image (when you re-size the image size setting) but DO select Constraint Proportions. When you are ready to print, make sure you do NOT select Scale to Fit Media (when you open the Print command page) but DO select Scale 100%. There you have it, maybe that’s just the silly hurdle which can be cleared easily now.

Now that we can get the image to fit the paper size all the time, here’s a tip to improve on the technique.

By way of example, take a typical photo from a digital camera (DSLR, compact or smartphone) W4752 x H3168 pixels, 66″ x 44″ image size (and canvas size) at 72 pixels/inch. You can use the Photoshop image size setting to re-size to 6″ x 4″ and then print. But it will be better if you crop the large image first to a smaller size still keeping to the 6″ x 4″ proportions (eg. 33 x 22, 12 x 8 etc..). When you have cropped sufficiently (say 18″ x 12″ for example) to include the image area of interest, then finally use the software’s image size setting to get to 6″ x 4″ for printing. 

Footnote: You will see the that the initial resolution is 72 pixels/inch (depending on your PC resolution) when you first opened your image. That’s the displayed resolution on your PC screen. However, for photo-quality prints, you should see the final print resolution will be something like 400-700 pixels/inch when you re-sized your photo as described above, provided you started with a high-enough resolution photo to begin with. 

Happy printing!


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