How to e-mail and receive photographs
Words & pictures Peter Bargh ePHOTOzine
It's highly likely that anyone reading this article has access to and uses
e-mail and you all probably use it to send messages, but did you know you can
send pictures too? Photos and documents, or any type of file can be attached
to an e-mail and sent so the receiver can open the file on their computer providing
they have the necessary software. If you have a more modern e-mail program such
as Outlook Express you can also save pictures within the page so you can arrange
them with relevant text to illustrate part of the mail or add a caption.
First lets look at sending the photo as an attachment.
This is ideal if you are sending photos to friends and family as a way to share
1 Open the program, I'm using Outlook on a Windows XP machine to illustrate
this. Your program may have slight variations.
2 Select new from the top menu (Ctrl+N is the usual shortcut)
3 Enter in the usual way the address of the person you want to send
the message to in the To box and the subject heading in the Subject box. It's
becoming increasingly important to make the subject obvious so that you do not
appear to be the sender of unwanted mail (known as Spam) Also, for those who
receive lots of spam mail, make the subject relevant ie "photos of Gail's
birthday party" or "dave, look at my new car" so it's easier
for them to find it quickly and avoid all the junk.
4 Enter a message in the text area.
5 Now to add the attachment. If you have an organised system you may
have a folder where you keep all your pictures. XP has a default option in the
My Documents folder called, would you believe, My Pictures. If you open this
folder and locate the picture/s you want to send you can simply click on the
picture and drag it across to the e-mail message while holding down on the mouse
button. Notice when you move over the subject/to/from area the cursor turns
into a no entry icon. When you move over the text field you'll see the cursor
convert to a + sign. If you now let go of the mouse button the picture will
drop into a new "attachment" field.
But wait a moment...did you resize the photo?
This is one problem with sending photos. If you have scanned in your pictures
or used one of the new higher resolution cameras are the chances are that the
photo will be over 1Mb and on normal e-mail connections that's huge and can
take ages for you to send, and for the person at the other end to download.
Some e-mail accounts wont let you send large files so the image will never get
to the receiver. There are many programs now that offer an automatic e-mail send
option that resizes the photo before it is attached, but those without this
luxury should edit the picture in a basic program and send a jpg or Gif. See
the article on resizing photographs here.
The only thing when you resize is that the person who receives the photo won't
be able to print out at a big size if you have set it to a screen size of say
500 pixels wide.
6 With a correctly sized and attached photo the message is now ready
to send and the picture will go along with it.
Sending pictures embedded into the text field
This is easy to do but relies on the person who you are sending the photograph
to having view HTML message active. If "read using plain text" is
selected the digital information that makes the picture reformats the photo
as page after page of gobbledygook text.
1 create your e-mail message using steps 1 to 4 as above.
| 2 Place your cursor in the
text field were you would like to insert your photo and click.
3 Go to the top menu, choose Picture from the Insert menu and
select the photo you want to e-mail
4 This will place the photo where the cursor was clicked. In this
case the photo was 600 pixels wide and is really to large to view comfortably
and notice you'll have to scroll to see the bottom.
5 You can at this stage resize the photo by clicking on the corner and
dragging. I did this and decided to move it to the middle of the text message
and centre the whole thing. Presentation is the key!
|6 Resizing photographs within
the page does make things look better, but the physical size does not change
when you send the e-mail so it's always better to create the correct sized
photo before you add it to the message. (See the article on resizing photographs
When you receive an e-mail with a photo sent as an attachment it will
appear with a paper clip icon in the list of e-mails.
1 Click on the message to open it and the file icon will appear
in an attachment field.
2 You can click on the attachment and drag it to the desktop or
an image folder or save to a specific location.
3 If you double click on the file it will open in the default
program that you have set for that type of file format. ie those ending
in .jpeg may open in PhotoSuite or those with .doc in Microsoft Word.
Be careful when receiving files ensuring that they are from a known source
before you open them, as there are many SPAM mails that have Virus files
attached. Use a virus checking program to prevent this such as Norton
AntiVirus. The common file formats to avoid opening without virus checking
include .pif, .scr and .exe.