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Cropping And Canvas Size

Lesson 33 from: Practical Adobe Photoshop Basics

Khara Plicanic

Cropping And Canvas Size

Lesson 33 from: Practical Adobe Photoshop Basics

Khara Plicanic

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Lesson Info

33. Cropping And Canvas Size


Class Trailer

Class Introduction


Tips for Success


How To Undo Mistakes


Adobe Workspace


Using The Brush Tool


Using The Zoom Tool


Adobe Preferences


Correcting Exposure


Lesson Info

Cropping And Canvas Size

Now what if somebody tells us that they want to use this image? Or maybe we want to use this image as a header for something online? Maybe it's going to be a header for an email newsletter. Maybe it's going to be a header for a block post. Maybe it's going to be, I don't know, a Facebook timeline cover or something, right? All of those things have specific sizes that an image needs to fit. So let's go back to image size and take a look at that. So I'll go back up to image image size. So let's say that the with of 842 is good. But let's say that we need an image to measure pixels by 400. Okay, then what are we gonna dio? Because if we come down here, even if we turn re sample off so we're safe here, um, flipped. Let's say we'll keep it on, but I need to be in pixels. Let's say that we come in here and we're like, all right, so 8 42 by 400. So we type in 400. Well, now the with is 603. So that's not what we want. Okay, In this case, we need to go to a whole different option. We're no lo...

nger re sizing. Now we are reshaping, which requires the crop tool. So we're changing now, So this isn't gonna work. This is not something we can do here in this box unless we distort the image by squishing it. And obviously we don't want to do that. Okay, so I'm gonna cancel this, and what we need to do now is grab our crop tool. So I'm gonna press see to get the crop tool and, uh, the crop tool. Really? It's changed a lot, actually, over the years, and I finally come to embrace the newer incarnation of it. Took me a while. So depending on what version you are following along in it May it always does the same thing. You could do all the same stuff, but it may just look different or behave a little differently. So let's talk about what we have here with the crop tool. We have some preset options and we'll talk about these in a minute, but they're different sizes and ratios over here. we have some input where we can put in some values and we'll talk about this stuff more in a moment. One of the things you should know about how the crop tools changed over the years is now they allow you to crop to just ratios, whereas before I want to say it cropped to the actual size. And now it does ratios which was so confusing to me initially. But in this case, we don't want a four by five ratio or five by seven or any of these presets. We want an actual specific size. Okay, so let's come up here to, with and height and Resolution. And we're gonna type in a specific size of 842 and I'll type P X for pixels and 400 pixels. Okay, so we're actually cutting the image. When we worked a minute ago in image size, we were just re sizing it. We were taking the pixels and we were either fanning them out into a big size or putting them to something little or in the case of re sampling, we threw away some pixels and made the whole thing smaller. Okay, but we were changing the size of the image of the whole. When we use the crop tool, we're reshaping the image. But we also have the opportunity to reshape it and, uh, resize it at once. So the crop tool sort of does both. So in this example, we're gonna have a with of 842 and the height of 400 pixels per inch or 400 pixels total. We'll leave this number blank in a minute. We'll come back to that and all explain this in a second. But for right now we have this set size. And now all we need to dio Teoh adjust this crop is. If I click on it, I can grab the image and move the image behind the crop. So we're gonna have to cut part of this image off. That's just unavoidable. And that's okay. That's the reality. Images are made in one size, and then they live a life in a lot of different formats, just like you might take a photo and then later put it on instagram. And now it needs to be a square. Or, if you're like me, you shoot everything in a square on your phone now, so you don't have to change the shape. But, um, that's the world we live in. There's all kinds of these different shapes, so you have to decide. So we're going to cut part of this and we can decide how to do that. Do we want to keep this balloon than maybe I cropped up a little bit? Or maybe I cut it off? Or maybe I depending what this is for and whether or not this is creates an ethical problem. But I could just move this balloon. Maybe I just select it and copy and paste it over here and fill in the hole and then keep it so those are all viable options. But I think I'll just split the difference and do sort of a crop like this. So you get to drag the crop to wherever you want and then press enter, and then Photoshopped will cut it to the exact specifications that you supplied. Okay, so this is an example of how he would resize something for the web. Right now, this is a set size that would be perfect for whatever. We would save this then, as the file that we needed. Our original image would stay as it Waas, and we could later come back and crop it to a different size, as we're about to dio, let's say that we made this for our email newsletter and now we need a eight by 10 of it for printing for something. Okay, so I'm gonna undo the crop we just did. I'm also gonna undo the downsize that we did cause now we want all those pixels back, so I'll undo that. And here we are, back at our original high res image. So let's say that we need that eight by 10 time. We already saw from the image size. If we go back here and if we work in inches, there we go. And if we don't re, if we don't re samples or turn that off, we could come into the with and say 10 inches. But now the height is just six and it's something. So that's not any by 10. So we still have to crop it. We have to reshape it, so I'll just cancel this so we'll go to our crop tool and will come up here in the options bar, and one of the presets you'll notice, is a ratio where it says 4 to 5, which is the equivalent of an eight by 10. So it lets you know that in parentheses. Okay, now this is a different, a different beast. So I'm gonna click on this and right now, for some reason it's cropping a vertical four by five or eight by time. So to flip flop this to keep it horizontal, I can just come over here and click the little button that will swap it. So now it's a horizontal eight. By 10. You'll notice by choosing a ratio here instead of actual, clear this out and just go back. No. Yup. So we have a ratio here instead of an actual print dimension. This is just a ratio, which means a length to with relationship. So when I cropped this, let's just say we'll go with with this. I guess I'll just hit Enter. So I've cropped this, but you'll notice if we look down in this info bar down here. It shows me not eight by 10. It says 34 whatever by 27 something, and it's still 72 pixels per inch. So what we've done is not put it into an eight by 10. Like if I hit print on my computer right now and it could magically spent on an eight by this would not be an eight by 10. It would come out and try to print 34 by 27 so I would get a message saying, Your printer can't do that. OK, But it isn't. It's in an eight by 10 ratio, so we could scale it down and it would fit in an eight by 10 frame perfectly if we could scale it down. It's cropped to the shape of an eight by 10 but it's still way too big. Okay, so that's what happens. And this is what threw me for such a loop when? Years ago. It's been a long time now. But when they updated the crop tool, I was like, What are these ratios here? Like they're not cropping it to the actual size. It's not an eight by 10. It's an eight by 10 ratio. You have a question? Yes. What is the four and five next to the Okay. So how do ratios work? It's a relationship between lengthen with. So a four by five has the same length to width ratio as an eight by 10 which means that if you crop an image to an eight by 10 or a for my five, you can take that same image and make a print that is four by five and eight by 10 and they will be the exact same crop. Does that make sense just like a square? If you have a square five by five print, you could take that same print and make it 20 by 20. And it would have the same exact configuration where, as if you took one image and you printed it or cropped it as a five by five and then also has an eight by 10. They're two different shapes, right? That's what that means. So four by five is the same as eight by 10 which is also the same as 16 by 20. Those are all the same ratios. Okay, uh, same as down here. A two by three ratio is the same as a four by six and eight by 12. And so on again. You don't have to do all that math and like, no, all that. It's just geometry e s. So if you like geometry gay for you Um, catch of all the math classes, geometry was maybe my favorite, so Oh, yeah, I'm good with that. It's cool. It's cool. Um, anyway, those air ratios And for me, that just kind of makes me a little bit crazy, cause I'm like, Ah, but I need an eight by 10. I want an eight by 10. I needed to just B eight by 10 not an eight by 10 ratio, but in actual eight by 10. So if you find yourself in that same boat where you're like, I don't get what happened I just tried to crop to eat by 10. And it is clearly not then what you want to dio? I'm gonna undo that Instead of selecting a ratio, what you want to do is actually put in a width and height and possibly a resolution. Okay. So for most people who are new to this, this is how I suggest you just do the crop tool. Just use this setting right here with the width and height, because then you can actually just put in the dimensions you want and you will get the dimensions you want, like the actual size, not just the ratio. Okay, so how do we do that, then? Well, we did it a minute ago when we cropped this to our little website is we put in pixel values, but we left the resolution blink. And because when we're talking about an image for the screen, we don't care so much about pixels per inch because there's no inches. We only care about pixel numbers, but when we're talking about printing an eight by 10 inch picture, we need to know what the resolution is. So then it's a different ball game. So let's come up here and we'll say, we're going to make this image 10 inches. So 10 space I end by eight space I end, and for the time being we're gonna leave resolution, blink and then we'll undo what we do and we'll come in and put a number and there, and I'll show you the difference because it's kind of amazing. It's amazing what photo shop is doing behind the scenes that if you don't know oh, you could be in trouble. Okay, so we're gonna leave a blank. Now pick your crop. Dragged this where? You know however you like it. I'll go with this, I guess. And then I'm gonna hit enter and doesn't feel better. Now, down here, it's showing us eight by 10. And yes, you will often see funny little, not perfectly round numbers like 8.1 because the math just works out that way with pixels because you can't have, like, anyway, math. But, um, it's OK, it's still in eight by 10. So we haven't eat by 10 and we see that we have 249 pixels per inch. So what just happened when we cropped? This is that Photoshopped took all the peanut butter that we had on that big tortilla, and it's scraped it all off and put it on to our smaller tortilla, All right? And because of that, they're Resolution went up. It was 72 pixels per inch and it was all spread out. And now we scraped it all together on the resolution, went up. So that's a good thing. All right. We left the resolution blank in that example up here, right in this bar, we left it blank. And so Photoshopped naturally arrived at this resolution. Let's undo that. And now I'm going to come up in here and, well, type of number in. No, actually, I take that back. We'll do it blank one more time. But let's do this. We'll do what people often do, which is they crop in on the image. So I'm going, Teoh, take my crop and let's say I want something. This is ridiculous and hopefully you don't crop in this far. But for the sake of example, we'll do this. This is what I call death by cropping hands. People do it all the time and have no idea why it's so dangerous or they do a version of this. Maybe not this extreme, but they crop in right. Everybody does this and sometimes it's OK. When you crop in a little bit and you shot with the 25 megapixel camera, you're OK. But when you crop in too far, this is what happens. So I'm gonna make this an eight by 10 cropping in very far and leaving this blank. And now when I press enter, we see that now if I tried to make an eight by 10 of this, I only have 58 pixels per inch, which is a far cry below the 1 50 to 300 range that we know to be the Golden Zone, I guess. Okay, that's our target area. So this will not print nicely, so I'm gonna undo it. And here's what happens when you put a number in this box. Let me type 300 pixels per inch. Because after all, that's the gold standard. Who wouldn't want that? And now let me do that same terrible crop that I did death by cropping so relatively. I mean, it's probably not exactly the same as what I just did, but it's close, okay? And then I'm gonna hit, return or enter. And now I got bigger on my screen. So that's clue number one. And look what happened down here. I have a nice round eight by 10 with 300 pixels per inch. But just a moment ago, we saw that when we left the resolution out of the box up there, we naturally shuck out at 50 something pixels. Prange. So what just happened? I just did the same crop, But now we have 300. Where did those extra pixels come from? The answer is know where they are? The pick Full fairy brought them okay. And they are garbage. Their imagined fake imposter pixels that Photoshopped just put in because we totaled it. Photo shop is like a little puppy. That was like, I'll do whatever you say. Just tell me. And we told it. Okay? I want an eight by 10 even out of this extreme crop. And I want 300 pixels per inch. And Photoshopped was like, your wish is granted, but it didn't warn us that we were making up a bunch of fixed fake pixels. So we have to know that. So I'm gonna undo that. So you want to avoid that type of situation? Question? The quality will be the same when you printed, because it's for kind of like fake, rare fakes. Hateful. Yeah. And they I mean, you can get away with some some fake pixels if, like if for some reason you need them for something, you can do that sometimes. But it's not. That's not a best practice. That's like I'm desperate, and I hope no one notices because I screwed up somewhere and shouldn't be doing this. But I'm going to try to make it happen. Kind of a thing. That's not like standard operating procedure. Okay, so you want to avoid those situations. The pixels are, you know, they're kind of okay, but, um, there is never as high quality as if you just shot the image the way that you just cropped it. So that's a compositional thing. That's, ah, become a better photographer thing. Sometimes you crop images into weird shapes because you need him that way for a print layout or for ah, for a specific use that they're going to be in some funky format. But, um and you can plan for that. But the idea is, you always want to just take the best photo you can with as many pixels as you can, because you can always throw away pixels to come down to less pixels. But making them up and calling on the pixel fairy is not a good thing. Okay, so that's why we always want to have as many as we can to start. And Photoshopped doesn't warn you when when you do this. So how do we avoid that. Well, for one thing, when you're using the crop tool and you're not using one of these ratios, which again doesn't give you the actual size, it just gives you the same shape, but not the physical size. So for a physical size, specifically, you want to come here and actually type in the dimensions. And I would say, Leave the resolution, blink and then you can draw whatever crop. Maybe you want to crop in a little for some reason, and you're like, Well, can I get away with us? Try it. Crop in a little, make your thing, press enter or return, and then look down here and see what you end up with. And in this case, it's 200 whatever. That's fine. You know, that's OK, so you could do that crop. But what you don't want to dio is come in and do like a ridiculous crop that's like super loomed in the more that you dragged the crop so that you're away from the edges of the photo, the more you're risking your resolution, the more you're you're throwing away pixels. So when you do something extreme like this, you're you know really risking it. And if you leave this blank than you contest it and you can see Oh, no, it's not gonna work. But if you put in a number here, Photoshopped will give it to you and you won't know if if they're fake or if they're legit pixels. Hopefully, that's making sense yet, Uh, so maybe it will be better, too, if you want to resize the much goto a much size instead of cropping first. Well, it depending, if that's it. I mean, I like the way you're thinking of it, but it ultimately the same thing. When you crop an image, you are re sizing. It also, um, you're just re sizing it while also reshaping it. So, for example, this image right now is 41 inches by whatever by 72. But when I crop it to an eight by 10 and I put the actual numbers in here, but and I crop it, um, the shape changed. But if I go into image size, we see that we have a different I mean, if I change this two inches, it's the image size changed cropping. It changes the image size. It just does it in a way that also changes the shape. So it's not scaling it, it's scaling it and then cutting it. I guess. So there are there the same thing. They're both doing the same thing, but in slightly different ways. But the end result is the same. A couple of people are asking some specifics like, um, you know how if I take a picture with my IPhone, how big can I print that picture in the world? And how do you figure that out depending on what your scenario? Right. Okay, so how big you can print your picture in the real world will determine will be determined by what was used to capture it and how many pixels were captured. That's the short story. The short answer. Um, and then you can just if you want to do the math somewhere in your specifications, when you buy a camera or a new phone, whatever it will tell you, it captures X number of megapixels. And if you really dig to find the numbers somewhere, you confined. You know that if, like 8000 pixels by, I don't know, I'm making these up 5000 pixels. Whatever eso then you could just take all that and divide it by 300 pixels per inch. And then you'll figure out how maney maximum inches would be at that size. But you could also just, like take picture, open it in photo shop and go into the image size turn off free sample and type 300 here, and we will show you. Um, but just remember, it's a guide. I mean, it's not, you know, I was just setting up some holiday card designs the other day and for the lab that I was referencing there. Templates for the lab are actually built at 250 pixels per inch, and I run into that a number of times where things that I have been preparing for output, um, they actually want less. There is a place that puts photos on purses, and they operate at 200 pixels per inch. So, you know, in today's world, you don't have to really worry about not having enough as long as you haven't done any death by cropping maneuvers or anything like that. So when it comes to cropping you, generally I wouldn't mess with the shape of your photo like whatever you captured it in, just leave it that way and crop it as you need for a specific use. Like I wouldn't suggest that you just, like, taken image. And you're like, Oh, I love this image. I think I'll just crop it this way, you know, for for just aesthetic reasons, that would be an interesting choice. But you wouldn't just crop it because you're like, Oh, I think it looks better this way And then just leave it, Sit on your hard drive like that You'd want to keep it, like, more or less the way you shot it and just crop it as needed for output. Yeah, so that is kind of related to the question that Katherine had asked. If you crop an image, then you go on to make edits and different layers. Can the crop be done? Can you under the crop leader? So question is, can you Can a crowd be done on a separate layer to be able Teoh do it? Ok, well, there is a thing that's semi newer. This option appeared to delete cropped pixels. Um, so if you have this unchecked, it will keep that information but you'd have to then grow the canvas back out to get it back. So the answer is like, you won't you You can possibly set it up so that you don't lose that data. But, um, for example, I think yesterday I noticed that when I was cropping something in our selections where was our cowboys when I created this graphic I must have, I guess I dragged these guys and I don't know that I cropped it. But I noticed later when someone asked a question that this guy still had legs on. That's the kind of thing that happens if I were to build this. Let's say I put the crop tool here and I don't delete data. So let's say a crop it like this. He should still have legs. Yeah, and he will. So it's more like that. It'll keep like pieces of your layers, but it's not like I can just be like, you know, three days later. Oh, I just want to keep everything the same, but on crop it so I wouldn't plan on working that way. But you can tell photo shop not to delete the data. If you think you might want to like. In that case, maybe you want to move the cowboy up a little bit, so keep the data. But I wouldn't try to work with the image as itself trying to maintain an uncrossed version. So, yeah, thank you. Good. Good questions. I know this is like a very confusing thing, but so I hope everyone's enjoying that. We're spending some time on it because it could be tricky. So what happens? Another thing to keep in mind, I guess, is what I call the crop flip flop. Because, um, at least I know I ran into this a lot where I would shoot in an image one way, like horizontally or vertically, and then clients would be like, Oh, that's great. I want it as a vertical image and I'd be like, OK, I hope I hope I can do that for you. So here's an example where we have a horizontal image and let's say a client wants this in an eight by 10. That's vertical. For whatever reason, Um, you can do that. You just get your crop tool, whatever settings and stuff, and then you can just flip flop right here and make it vertical. And even if it wasn't specifically in eight by 10 we could keep the same ratio as the original image. But maybe just flip it vertically, and then you just drag over. Now this image works so I could crop. And I mean, I liked it better horizontal. But this could work if it had to be. But not every image will work that way. So here's an example oven image that's very clearly horizontal. And if someone said, Let's make that vertical There's no way to do this without losing part of what makes this image great. I mean, we're losing, like, legit content here, so you can't always do that. And the way to avoid that sort of conflict, I guess, is, too, when you're shooting stuff to try to think ahead and shoot both ways. You know, if you are someone who's wanting to shoot for magazines and shoot for layouts and that kind of thing, you definitely want to make sure that you're shooting things both ways because magazines are generally vertical, so you know, if you want to be on the cover, you need a vertical image or an image that's very easily made into a vertical image. But then maybe that image doesn't get used on the cover. Maybe it goes and find somewhere. And so then it's a whole other format. OK, so you just want to plan ahead and take different versions of things.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts
Photoshop Resource Guide
Practical Photoshop Basics (PS action file)
Word Art
Course Files

Ratings and Reviews

Kim Williams

I tuned into this class hoping to glean what I cold since it was free. I ended up purchasing the class because it is FILLED with so much great information in a fun and easy to understand format. Khara is an amazing instructor - I thoroughly enjoyed every minute. Worth EVERY penny. Thank you Creative Live for offering such great material, at even more amazing prices.


What an unbelievable teacher Khara is. I have wanted to learn photoshop forever but was intimidated, overwhelmed, then I watched this course. OMG I learnt so much, more then I imagined. I am so excited now to start using Photoshop, I can't wait to try out everything she taught us. With the skills we learnt over these two days I think this course provides everything I need to know to feel and more. She was outstanding, the absolute perfect teacher for someone who has never ever used Photoshop. Also great moderation by Kenna. Thank you for this awesome, amazing, wonderful course. I am sure anyone who watches this course will agree it is incredible. I couldn't recommend it more. This course was just Smurfy!

Roz Fruchtman

I would highly recommend Khara Plicanic's Practical Adobe Photoshop Basics. The name of the class, implies that the class is for beginners, but that's not exactly true. Most of us learn Photoshop by the features we need to know at any given time. As many will agree, there are a number of ways to get to the same end. I can only speak for myself, but... I would bet that many of us don't know all the strategies that are taught in this class! Check it out, I doubt you'd be disappointed! Khara brings a fun and relatable approach to everything she does. She is very entertaining, while being a superb instructor. Last, but not least... This class brings with it a ton of useful bonuses. Warm Regards, Roz Fruchtman aka @RozSpirations

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