Ya dumb probably isn't the right word. It kinda sucks for digital artwork because one of mine when I am finished is almost 200mb and I hate compressing the file cause the finer details sometimes become blurred and messy :(
there is no site that will allow 200meg files, if it's a psd it will be that big, anything else will get smaller. all of my images are jpg about the same size, saved at the least compressed settings and i don't have any real problems. as long as your image isn't bigger than 6200 (which is the biggest size for a rectangle type images), you can get that compression. since i see no noise in your shots and it's all solid colors you should be able to get a good compression without blocks. you can always add it to the suggestion list but i'm sure it's on there a few times over.
Try it and see if it works out for you. Make two images of one of your works, one at a higher resolution than the other but compressed to about the same file size, and compare them. Just don't compare them pixel-for-pixel; look at, say, the same square inch of the image if they were each printed at the same size.
So what you may want to do is produce jpegs well beyond the resolution requirements for FAA's largest prints, compressed to the 25M file size. Make them big enough and that should make the jpeg artifacts small enough to be less, if at all, visible in the prints.
Niklas, we can discuss all that as long as we want, but we are unable to change the general situation. The limitation of sizes is not someoneís evil desire. FAA isnít Zazzle or Deviant. All sites act in their own situations and have different goals, marked strategy, technical equipment. Probably FAA has less storage place or much more artists and artwork uploaded then other sites. Mean while the FAA is more popular then other sites and its popularity grows very fast. The amount of artwork, uploaded every day grows dramatically too. Sean (the leader of FAA) works hard to enlarge limits. I remember time, when the limit was 10 mb, then it was enlarged to 25mb step by step. I donít think he will ever afford unlimited uploads Ė FAA is too popular for it. All of us we have to adjust our artwork to the current situation or leave FAA. Iíd advise to think not about the best quality in general, but about the printing quality in the exact sizes, which FAA produces with the technical means, which they have currently. As far as I recall, every artist, who bought his (her) artwork from FAA, was impressed by the high quality of prints. Sometimes the quality of images, uploaded to FAA, was not enough for large prints. In several of such particular cases Sean contacted artists, whose artwork was ordered, and suggested to send to him better (larger) files of the ordered artwork. Otherwise the current allowed sizes are more then enough for showing your artwork beautifuly to be ordered and bought, arenít they?
I scan my film negatives at the maximum inch size to the point where it doesn't lose quality, and at the maximum dpi they can be scanned. And I scan in jpeg.
Then all I do is to reduce the ppi until it gets 25mb.
If I put the minimum ppi that is 150 and yet it has more than 25mb. I save the jpeg file with less quality (11 or 10 quality scale instead of 12 that is the maximum).
It means, only photographs from 35mm negatives has 300ppi. But because the smaller negative the maximum print option is 11x14in or 11x17in without too much loss of quality.
The bigger negatives which can give big prints with crisp details when look standing near the print, lose a lot of it quality on big prints. It doesn't look bad, but it could look way much better because the difference very big.
And the most important, it loses a bit one of the best quality of the bigger negatives that is the dynamic range.
All I was saying was how it is weird how the file cap is so low compared to other sites. Its not that Im worried that the prints arent going to look good. I was just talking about how it effects my artwork i negatively when you take a large file and turn it into a small one.
Niklas, here's an important point to mention. Always preserve your originals at their archival quality (at their original resolution) and preferably in a form which allows you to revisit your creative process. A TIF is the usual choice, because it is not "lossy" (subject to loss of detail/resolution by jpg artifacts and compression, for example). Also, the tif format can contain your layers. An alternative is you native editor's format, like a PSD file for photoshop, which can preserve even more of your active editing process. This allows you to revisit an edited images, and make modifications without losing all the prior work in your prior edits.
Any JPG file also must be in a specific color space, and different processes require different color spaces. Some printers require SRGB, others (like FAA) work best with Adobe RGB 1998, and some require CYMK. I'm sure others are needed at times, as well. When you create a file to publish at a particular output publication, it should include the specifics required by that source. Use care NOT to degrade your "original" working edit copy by saving it as a "mere" output publication file. Any loss of data from image compression, to meet file size limitations (which is the "solution" to your problem) should NOT be made to the working archival edit original image, but should be made to a publication specific output copy image. (Think like film vs print, archival vs production print)
I always keep my original files at original HD...and then I'm forced to compress but we all knew what was the limit here in a first place...so all we can do is tryin' to keep as much as we can from the original and hoping is enough for visitors and buyers...No complains for the quality of my work so far so I'm not complaining for the limit either :)
Some people don't compress images which are over 25mb at highest quality. This is, in my opinion, a mistake. Such images can be printed at much larger sizes at very little visible degradation of print quality a higher compression, lower quality. I believe that on the Photoshop scale, where maximum quality is 12, that quality level 8 is quite acceptable on very high resolution digital images, such as stitched photographic panoramas, or high resolution digital images. I haven't done test prints, or strip prints, but this is what I infer from looking at image quality on my screen. At quality 8 of 12, I can't see any compression artifacts on screen. At lower print sizes, such compression will have no visible effect. and I'm sure that it's difficult to detect at even the highest print size. You should experiment yourself, and form your own conclusions, rather than take my word for it. But other people do agree with me in this strategy.
i find 9 is the best compression for most things if it has to be compressed at all. i saved at 8 for my textures but found it made too many blocks. 9 seems better and it's not that much larger than 8. but for this site it's either 11 or 12.
I understand your words: Didn't think they would nor was I expecting them to lol I was just saying what was on my mind.
However, you touched the topic, which has a practical value to every FAA member and was discussed many times here. Thatís why I tried to switch this discussion into a more practical way Ė we make big files with the numerous attractive details not for our own pleasure only. FAA sells prints, and if we want to sell our art in the form of prints, we should care first of all for the quality of the resulting prints, not for the size of uploaded files.
It allows two conclusions:
The quality of prints depends on the printing machines, used by FAA. It is useless to upload large files which contain more details then FAA printing machines can reproduce.
Sean is the only person, who control all the process here. It is up to him to decide what quality (size, resolution, format) of uploads is enough. We can not influence the printing process, so best way for us is to follow his advises.
There were some good advices above, which fully correlate with previous discussions and Sean instructions. The only post seems to me as a bit doubtful.
Marcio, I love your art and hate to think that prints of your images can be spoiled by some mistake. Once Sean initially made a thread about the quality of prints. Among other advices he specially warned us against changing DPI resolution, when proceeding our files. He wrote that it can ruin the quality of prints. To say the truth, I change resolution sometimes myself risking to break Sean instructions, but I do it when making purely digital images, which I draw by hand with a tablet and due software. You are one of the rare photographers, who still work with films and slide scanners. May be the rule not to change resolution is not compulsory for you too, but may be it worth thinking aboutÖ
I want to reproduce here part of Seanís instructions in that old thread. May be Beth can add this with some more links to the former threads.
For everyone's reference, here's what happens behind the scenes at FAA when an order comes through:
We immediately open up the high-resolution images for the prints that were ordered and check the quality of the images. All of the images that you see on FAA or no larger than 600 x 600 pixels. The original, high-resolution images are much, much larger and are kept in a secure location that's not visible on the website. We produce our prints using the high-resolution images, and therefore, we need to make sure that the high-resolution images are perfect before we release them for production.
Unfortunately, a lot of painters do not do a very good job of photographing their artwork. This is due primarily to a lack of knowledge about things like image resolution, JPEG compression, image resizing, etc... and the fact that "photographing your artwork for printing" is much different than "photographing your artwork for E-Bay" or "photographing your artwork for your website".
When you're photographing an image for printing purposes, here are the important things to consider:
1. You need to use the highest-resolution camera that you have available. Higher resolution = better image. A 5-megapixel camera is better than a 2-megapixel camera. A 10-megapixel camera is better than a 5-megapixel camera.
2. You need to photograph your artwork using evenly distributed lighting (i.e. no flash). Ideally, you would want to set up some professional lighting like they use in portrait studios. Since most of us don't have access to professional lighting, the next best option is to photograph your artwork in outside sunlight.
3. You need to make sure that your camera is steady when you shoot the image (i.e. use a tripod). If you hold the camera in your hand, your hand is going to be shaking when you press the shutter button, and your image will be blurry as a result. A little bit of blur won't be noticeable on small prints... but you need to keep in mind that FAA offers prints up to 10 feet wide!
4. You need to make sure that your camera is on the highest possible quality setting. If you own a 10 megapixel camera, for instance, you have the option of lowering the quality setting on the camera in order to shoot a 1 megapixel image, if you want to. That's definitely not what you want to do. Make sure that the camera is on the highest possible setting.
5. After you shoot the image, you'll obviously transfer the image over to your PC. At this point, you need to open the image in PhotoShop or some other photo-editing program and do the following:
a. zoom in to full resolution (i.e. one pixel in the image = one pixel on your computer screen) and make sure that the image isn't blurry
b. crop the image so that you can't see the background (i.e. easel, wall, etc.)
c. adjust the brightness and contrast, if necessary
d. adjust the color settings, if necessary
e. digitally sharpen the image, if desired
f. save the image as a JPEG file
6. You SHOULD NOT DO ANY OF THE FOLLOWING:
a. enlarge the image
b. save the image with too much JPEG compression
7. Do not, under any circumstances, enlarge your image. Doing so instantly ruins the image for printing purposes. If you shoot your image with a 3 megapixel camera, for example, you'll end up with an image that is roughly 2000 pixels by 1600 pixels. At that image size, you'll be able to sell prints that are up to 20" x 16" in size. A lot of times, artists will say "hey, I want to sell this image as a 40" x 32" print - I'll just enlarge the image in PhotoShop". You definitely should NOT do that. Again, when you enlarge an image, it instantly becomes blurry, blocky, and unusable. If you want to produce a print that's 40" x 32", then your image needs to be at least 4000 pixels x 3200 pixels... which means that you need to go purchase a 13 megapixel camera.
4000 pixels x 3200 pixels = 12.8 million pixels = 12.8 megapixels
There is no other way around it. Again - I can't stress this enough - you should not enlarge your image using software.
Also - don't adjust the DPI settings. DPI doesn't matter. All that matters is the actual image size (e.g. 4000 pixels x 3000 pixels). As long as you don't enlarge your image, you'll be fine.
8. Also, when you save your image, make sure that the JPEG compression setting is as low as possible (minimal compression). JPEG compression is a feature that allows you to reduce the quality of your image in order to conserve space on your hard drive. For example, your 4000 pixel x 3200 pixel image might take up 15 MB of hard drive space when you transfer it over from your camera. Then, you open it up in PhotoShop and crop it, sharpen it, etc. When you go to resave the image, you might accidentally have JPEG compression turned up too high. When you click "save", your image will be save at a reduced quality. The image will still be 4000 pixels x 3200 pixels, but now it might only take up 3 MB on your hard drive.
How is that possible? The JPEG compression actually removes details from the image in order to conserve hard drive space. The finer details of the image are lost, and the image becomes blocky. Please note - the effects of JPEG compression are irreversable. Once you save your image with a lot of compression, you CAN NOT go back. The details of your image are permanently lost, and you'll need to reshoot the image with your camera again.
And still I think that all above is worth knowing. We are free to decide weather to take it into consideration or not when creating art in our own way with a camera or otherwise. By the way, have not I said that I like your drawings? I do. In what way do you create them - first on paper and digital copies, or in computer by hand?
Sorry. I've looked into descriptions of your images more attentively and now I know that you use both methods. I liked your last image, which was made solely in photoshop too. Have not you tried My Paint software (free download)? I like it because it provides very clean colors and a good imitation of traditional tools (pencil, brush, ink, etc). It also allows to save images in rather small png files with large actual dimensions (width and hight). It should be good for drawing pictures digitally solely by hand, but I am a worse drawist then you are, so I use it from time to time for retouching some of my images only. I also use both My Paint and Adobe Photoshop together for proceeding some of my images.
I wouldn't downgrade to a more limited program as my school uses Photoshop and there would be no need to learn another program. Sorry for being a little bit snippy just your comments kind of came off as a little be arrogant