capturing assets,  digital storytelling,  instruction

How do you solve a problem like portrait?

Showing landscape-oriented photos and still images in your digital story is straightforward. You just crop, constraining dimensions to 768 x 576 pixels, or whichever dimensions you use. But how do you crop and display portrait-oriented images in your story? If you want full control over the way your portrait-oriented photos are shown in your digital story, here are the steps I use when explaining cropping and showing them.

In Photoshop…

  • change background colour to Black (usually)
  • Select the Rectangular Marquee Tool. When you click and drag out, you’ll notice the ‘marching ants’ around your selection
  • On the top Menu bar: Edit > Copy
  • Menu: File > New > Background colour (black)
  • Menu: Edit > Paste
  • If you need to rotate your photo. Menu: Image > Rotate Canvas > Arbitrary
  • Image > Image Size > Res=150 > Height=576 (Constrain proportions)
  • Image > Canvas Size > 768×576
  • Adjust levels and Sharpness
  • Save as .tif.

I learned this back in 2001 from Joe Lambert, Nina Mullen and Daniel Meadows.  By the way, while we’re on the subject of images, have a look at these ace photography tips by Carwyn Evans on the Capture Wales site.

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