What is a social media sized file?

What's a Social Media Sized Digital File?


Such a great question!

  • When a photo is taken, the original file is usually set to 300dpi (dots per inch).  This is a large file and can take up a lot of room on a computer or other host.
  •  A print made with a 300dpi file will contain the maximum amount of digital information for clarity of detail, contrast, colour, etc.  This is especially important when larger pieces are crafted.
  • Computer screens, though, don't see much, if any,  difference between 72dpi and 300dpi. The only real issue that would affect how a 72dpi file would look on your screen is the width and height of the file and the calibration of your screen.
  • A file that is 600px (pixels are the smallest bits of digital info) will look blurry and "pixelated" when zoomed in on as you will start to see the distance between the pixels.

Unless you are planning to make prints, a 72dpi file that is 1000px-1200px on the longest side will be fine for online sharing. Knowing that most people want a digital file to share, all prints that you purchase from me are accompanied by a file that is 72dpi and 1000px-1200px on the long side. I do sell these files separately for folks who don't want prints, but for a few dollars more, you can have both! (I LOVE prints and want everyone to have them!)


Here are some comparisons.



This 1200x800 file is what someone would receive if they purchased this as a print of Ella. It looks great!



MMJH9880 1200x800 300dpiMMJH9880 1200x800 300dpi

This file would make a nice small print and looks the same as the 72dpi online. When I make prints, I use the original size file. This file was 4743px x 3162px before I reduced it for comparison.



MMJH9880-800x600 thumbnail sizedMMJH9880-800x600 thumbnail sized

If you enlarged this last example (800px x 600px) you would see a noticeable difference in quality as there are a lot fewer pixels. It's looks fine, though, as a small file on a screen, but  I would not print this at any size!



Why don't I  include the full resolution files with prints?

  • Another great question and with a simple answer: I like to control what happens to a file that I have put time (sometimes hours) and talent into taking, editing and processing to protect my reputation and your investment.
  • Most people want a file to share and are not interested in making prints. 
  • Print labs are not all the same, trust me on this one. To have a one of my files displayed in a way that "messed up" my work would make me both upset (I don't want people who see that print to think that is the kind of work I do) and sad (you've spent a lot of money on a file and ended with a really awful looking product that doesn't look like you thought it would.)


Any questions? Let me know!  Contact me!


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