Take your photography to the next level and beyond...

  • NEWS

Why not join for free today?

Join for Free

Your total photography experience starts here

Exclusive 25% off Affinity Photo: Professional photo editing with no subscription!

Cropping question

RCM 5 3
3 Sep 2012 9:29PM

Just registered & already learning lots from your helpful forum...

My question relates to whether it is best practice to keep an image true to its original proportions when cropping. E.g. when I'm using the crop tool in Lightroom should I be keeping the "original" dimensions locked or does it not really matter if I change the proportions to whatever I feel best shows off the image?

Up to now I've just been cropping to whatever proportions suits but was wondering if this is somewhat frowned upon should I get to the stage of entering competitions, getting stuff published etc. Does that require a more conventional size ratio & therefore should I get in the habit of doing this now?

Thanks for your help

Join ePHOTOzine for free and remove these adverts.

mlewis 13 1.5k United Kingdom
3 Sep 2012 10:07PM
It's usually best to crop to whatever you think works best. It's what I do. There does not have to be a fixed aspect ratio for all pictures.
dandeakin 10 209 3 England
3 Sep 2012 10:19PM
I would try and stick to a 'standard' crop ratio eg 3:2 , 4:3 etc as if and when you come to print & frame your images it will be vastly easier to do so. Eg if you get 4 or 5 picture frames that can mount a 12x8 inch print then you can just print a new image when you feel like changing whatever it is that you've got on your wall.

That said, for internet use it really doesn't matter.
JJGEE 13 7.2k 18 England
3 Sep 2012 10:28PM
Crop to what you feel is best for the image.

If they are for prints then one can get the mattes / frames in standard ratios / sizes and cut the aperture of the matte to suit the print.
RCM 5 3
3 Sep 2012 10:35PM
Got it, thanks all
dandeakin 10 209 3 England
3 Sep 2012 10:45PM
Only if your happy to a) cut a new mount every time you want to frame an image and b) have mount dimensions that are unequal on the horizontal and vertical e.g. 5cm on the top and bottom, 3cm on the left and right for the mount aperture.

The first panoramic image that I framed had a ratio of something like 3.129x1 because that was how I cropped it. I had a custom frame/mount made. Every panoramic image that has subsequently been in the frame has had to be cropped to the same random dimensions. I wish I had just stuck to a standard crop size e.g. 3:1. Particularly as I could have printed two panoramic images onto each 18x12 inch print.
dandeakin 10 209 3 England
3 Sep 2012 10:46PM
That said , for Internet or competition use it really doesn't matter
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
3 Sep 2012 10:53PM
I'll crop my images to whatever size and shape I think looks best but I do tend to stick to 'standard' dimensions, ie. print ratios where I can, simply so that printing them should I ever choose to do so, won't involve any clipping or strange borders.
But like everything else in photography, there are no rules.
User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
4 Sep 2012 10:35AM
Yep. Deciding the ratio of the final print is part of the overall artistic process of creating your photograph. Don't be bound by conventions imposed by paper manufacturers or Supasnaps.

Sign In

You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join For Free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.