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How to Edit Photos for Printing: Our Expert Tips

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Wondering how to edit photos for printing without using professional software? Our team shares the essential insights you need to know.

Not every photo turns out perfect – but if you know how to edit photos for printing, you can enhance almost any picture. And the best thing? You don’t need expensive professional software to make the most of your photos.

We’ve made a list of the most efficient and easy-to-follow photo editing recommendations. With these invaluable tips, you’ll be able to transform your photos – so they’re ready to be turned into stunning canvas prints or other custom print reproductions! Here are the simple steps you should follow:

#1. Calibrate Your Monitor

How to edit photos: a person looking at the computer monitor

Did you know that if your monitor isn't calibrated very well, your printed photos can look very different from what you see on screen? It's because some monitors give the colours a warmer or cooler look than they’d have in print.

But don't worry, you can easily fix this by manually adjusting your monitor settings using the advanced display options. This will ensure that the colours in your photos appear true-to-life on screen, avoiding any unpleasant surprises when it's time to print.

#2. Crop Your Photo

How to edit photos: two women looking at their smartphones

Some photos already have a good composition – in which case you can jump straight to the next step. But if you feel that your picture would benefit from some cropping, do it the right way! Cut out any unnecessary elements and focus on the most important details.

Just keep in mind that if you crop too much, the resulting image may lose some of its resolution. So to ensure your photo maintains its quality, avoid cropping more than is necessary.

#3. Change Brightness and Contrast

How to edit photos: a person editing a photo in their smartphone

If a photo’s come out darker than you’d hoped, you can brighten it up digitally. And if you want to make the colours pop, adjusting the contrast level will do the trick.

Many editing tools offer auto-correction features, but manual adjustments often yield better results. Take the time to fine-tune the brightness and contrast, and witness the remarkable difference they can make.

#4. Enhance Colours

How to edit photos: a person editing photos on their computer

One of the keys to creating visually striking prints is to enhance the colours in your photos. This step helps to make the details pop and adds depth to your images. You can also experiment with filtering colour photos to make them black-and-white.

Experiment with adjusting the saturation levels until you achieve the desired effect. Even a subtle change can make a real difference here – though you shouldn’t be afraid to go bold if you’re looking for a “hyper-real” visual effect.

#5. Focus on Sharpness and Clarity

How to edit photos: a person looking at photos on the computer

To ensure your printed photos are crisp and clear, try sharpening and enhancing their overall clarity. Most photo editing tools, including free ones, offer options for sharpening or clarity adjustments.

Use these tools carefully, as excessive sharpening can introduce unwanted effects. Zoom in and analyse the image carefully while making adjustments to strike the perfect balance.

#6. Play Around with Filters (Optional)

How to edit photos: a person applying a photo filter in the smartphone

This step isn’t mandatory but it’s worth experimenting with photo filters if you want to achieve a quirky finish. Filters can add a unique touch to your photos, whether it's adding warmth, a vintage look, or enhancing specific colours.

Use filters sparingly, choosing only the ones that you think will complement the mood and theme of your photo. There’s a variety of filter options available on Google Photos, Instagram and even default Windows or Android photo apps.

#7. Save and Print with Confidence

How to edit photos: a woman holding a smartphone and a credit card

After you've applied all the necessary edits, it's time to save your masterpiece. Choose a suitable file format that preserves the quality of your image, such as JPEG.

We recommend creating a separate folder on your computer to keep the original files and enhanced copies. If you’re editing on your smartphone, make sure you don’t overwrite your original photo.

And once you’re completely happy with the changes you’ve made, upload the edited images to MYPICTURE, select your desired format, and await the arrival of your professionally printed photographs!

Note: You can achieve most of these enhancements using free resources like Google Photos or the Windows Photos app. We also recommend exploring websites such as Canva or BeFunky, which offer a wide array of free photo editing tools. These platforms let you save your edited images online or conveniently download them to your device.

Pro Tips for Print-Ready Photos

When you edit photos for printing, it’s worth considering what kind of print you’ll choose, as certain formats are more suited to certain photo qualities. Here’s what you need to know if you want to design perfect prints with MYPICTURE:

Canvas Prints: This print format comes with a textured finish, so expect dark colours to appear slightly lighter than in your photo. You may want to boost the brightness before printing.

Metal and Acrylic Prints: These two formats make photo reproductions ultra-vivid and vibrant. It’s worth making your photos extra crisp to bring out the beauty of every pixel.

Framed Photos and Posters: These formats come with a matte finish, so consider increasing the contrast and sharpness.

Wood Prints: Our prints on wood give photos a vintage effect where the wood texture shows through in lighter parts of your image. If you want to emphasise the natural grain of the wood, consider making your image lighter and brighter.

Round Photo Prints: It’s highly unlikely that your original photo will itself be round, so think carefully about how to crop your image. You want to maximise the focus on your subject but not lose too much background detail.

***

Editing photos for printing doesn't have to be a daunting task, even if you don’t have access to professional software. Our easy-to-follow recommendations mean you can edit your photos like a pro -and transform them into stunning prints. So get ready to put this knowledge into practice and prepare to be amazed by some incredible results! Happy editing and happy printing!

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