This article focuses on some common questions like:
- How do I resize images?
- How to make my photos smaller, so that I can send them over email to my friends?
- How do I make images smaller?
- How do I shrink this picture for an avatar?
- How do I crop an image?
- How to resize my photos to fit the size need for my BLOG?
- Make your own cellphone background
Audience: It addresses all of us that own a digital camera, webmasters, people travelling, ... anybody who quickly wants to resize a digital image for email or publishing on a web site.
Today's digital cameras shoot large-sized images. This is great for making prints, but it is a bad thing when you are sharing images. You don't want to bog down someone's e-mail, for instance, with oversized files. Plus, many e-mail programs won't send or receive large files. If you are posting the images to the Web, it will take too long to load and look weird in its original size.
For this article I use the image converter AZImage. While there are subtle differences, most image converters operate in much the same manner and the concepts remain the same. There is absolutely no need to buy an expensive photo editor to do this! To follow the instructions as in this article, download AZImage, install it and launch it by selecting Start / Programs / AZImage / AZImage. Now the main AZImage window appears on your screen.
How to resize photos or images (keeping the high quality of the pictures)
- Browse your computer and select your image/photo to resize
Most of the image converters allow you to use drag & drop. This makes this task very easy. If this is not supported, just look in the menu after add file or on the converters's taskbar. AZImage supports all these workflows, we will detail the drag & drop procedure. Open Windows Explorer (for example by pressing the windows key + E). Go to the folder where your images are. Select your images (select multiple images by keeping the Ctrl key pressed while clicking them). Drag your images with the mouse on the AZImage window. They will be added to the list and in the status bar the count of all added images will be displayed.
- Select the new format and size for your picture - use a preset or choose a custom setting
You have to look after the output format (JPEG, Bitmap, GIF) and after the resize dialogue. These options differ a lot so if you are not using AZImage try to have a look on google. In AZImage now click on the second tab (Select Format). We suppose here that no format is present or active. Click on the taskbar the "Add..." button. The new format dialogue will be presented to you. Select JPEG - High Quality as the output format. You can adjust the finest settings by clicking on the Advanced button. When you are ready click on "Next". Select the desired width or height. It is a good technique to enter only one dimension and let AZImage compute automatically the other one. The resized image will keep the original aspect ratio. You can crop the image later to fit the second dimension as well. When you are ready click on "Next" and enter the destination directory and then again "Next". Review shortly your settings and click "Accept & Close". Now your settings are added to the list.
- Convert the image
It is most of the time as simple as clicking on the convert button. AZImage keeps it that simple. Click on the "Convert!" tab and then on "Start". A progress will be displayed and your conversion will be performed. Now open Explorer and go to the folder you specified for the output. Your images are there in the size you need them!
- Crop the image to a custom size
If the image has not the desired height or width, you can use for example Paint to crop it. Just open the picture in Paint (right click and select Edit) and enter in Main Menu / Image / Attributes the correct dimensions. Now save it as Bitmap and convert it again with AZImage to the desired JPEG setting. You can also save it as JPEG directly from Paint, but you have no control over the fine settings.
- Select output image/picture quality - Lower quality means a smaller file!
I have often answered the question: "how to I resize an image to achieve for example 240kb in size?". Well you cannot select the output size. This is because the compression used in JPEG and other formats depends on the image itself. The easy way to do it in AZImage is select JPEG - Average as the output format, enter the desired dimensions and see if you land under or over the desired size. Then edit the format and in advanced options for JPEG move the quality slider so that you increase, respectively decrease the file size (lower quality means a smaller file and viceversa). Now convert the image and see if your size is more suited for your purpose. You can repead the last steps until you get more or less the desired file size.
Upload your images
You just converted some dozens of your photos and want to share them with your friends? No problem at all! AZImage supports uploading to Google Picasa WEB Albums. We suppose that you already have a google user name "John Doe" and with the password "secret". Edit the AZImage format for the conversion, select under the Output Directory "Google Picasa", now the username and password fields are active. Click into the username editbox and enter your username ("John Doe" in our example), then enter into the password editbox your password ("secret" in our example). AZImage will encrypt your username and password before storing them on your computer to minimize any security risks. Now click on "Next" and "Accept & Close" and you are almost ready. Click on Convert!, Start and your images will be uploaded after the conversion to Picasa WEB Albums.
How to contribute to this article
Do you have questions? Use the discussion page of this article to post them.
Do you have improvements? Please feel free to improve the article in any way (from minor spelling issues to restructuring). This is what wiki is for!