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Help: I can be in a magazine if the photo had higher resolution


Elite Explorer
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February 13, 1999
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Hey guys, I don't know if it is possible but I need a photo sharpened to a higher resolution to magazine quality. Basically, it's a photo taken with a Sony Mavica floppy disk camera and is an 80k jpeg. Here's the PM I got and the story. Is this possible to do?


Photo request

Dear Gerald Jarrett,
I'm an editor at My Ford, the official Ford Division owner magazine. On the site, I found a great image of your Explorer headed up a mountain side in Moab with "Just Married" painted across the rear window. It's a wonderful photo that tells a great story.

We're launching a new section of the magazine in which we'll be asking readers to submit photos of themselves and their vehicles doing adventurous and/or unusual things--but we need the first photo, and we think yours is perfect. We'd like to request your permission to print this image in our Summer 2006 issue, along with a short caption that says who you are and what you're doing; we'll send you a $100 BP Gas Gift Card as thanks.

Would you be able to send us a print or high-resolution version of this photo?

We would love to hear from you this week.


Wow what a surprise of a message. Yes that will be fine to publish that photo. I believe you mean this one?


If so, it was made with my camera that I had handed out to someone else and the camera was an old Sony Mavica that uses floppy disks. In other words, that 80k jpeg image is all the resolution it has. Because of the low resolution I do not know if it would be acceptable for magazine print :(

Rick Horwitz took a shot with his camera which has plenty of resolution, but that photo doesn't seem to quite capture the same spirit as the photo above. Here it is:


If you can still use the photo you wanted to even though it’s low resolution, by all means be my guest. As for a caption, I don’t know how many words you want to give to it, so I’ll just describe the photo and you can word it as you wish. We are Gerald and Ashli Jarrett and we got married on the Top of the World trail in Moab on May 21, 2004 during the annual Moab run. Here’s a photo during the wedding:


The photo you are interested in printing was taken the next day on an obstacle called “Upchuck” on the Behind the Rocks trail in Moab.

Let me know if you can still use the photo as is. There are some pretty good digital photo masters on our website and I will post a request tonight to try to see if there is a way for one of those gurus to digitally enhance the resolution and improve its appearance when blown up to a larger size.

Thank you,

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I have no idea. I posted everything I know, LOL. Do you mean can the magazine take it smaller, or do you need it smaller for some reason?

Yeah I understand what you're saying now. But what I'm asking is different. I didn't mean up the resolution as in size of the photo, but somehow digitally increasing the sharpness/quality of the resolution of the photo itself..... kind of like on a cop show on TV when they use a computer to increase the visibility of a fuzzy image to try to read a license plate - that sort of thing.

She just called me today and asked if I had the original image. Did you tell her to call or did she just find my info somehow?

What froader is saying is how big of a picture does the magazine plan to insert on the page, as in (x)inches X (x)inches. If the to be published pic is the same size as you posted, or smaller, then the picture's resolution can be increased to make the picture appear sharper. The pixel number will be increase by dividing whats there into smaller divisions, therefore giving the appearance of a sharper pic. If the photo is to be a full page spead, then you need image with much better resolution than you have.

i.e. - blah blah blah time for a new camera and road trip.

Okay I understand. I guess we need to wait to hear from her to see how big she is thinking.

Rick, I simply gave you credit for the other photo so I don't know if she keyed in on that or simply called you anyway since this is your site she saw the photo on.



I saturated the top one to much. The second one doesnt have as much. I think the second one looks better.

Sharpening isn't the problem. The image needs to be expanded through interpolation. It also needs to be 300dpi. Giving them a 640x480 photo won't produce good results. I gave Colin some info about an interpolation program. If I weren't on a laptop on the road I'd do it. But the screen sucks on this thing and I don't have that program on this 'puter.:(


I didn't have any luck with that program, or maybe I just didn't know how to use it. I couldn't get the pic to 300dpi without distorting it or being any better quality.

I changed it from 150 dpi to 300 and 500 dpi and it seems to have done nothing to the pic. At least nothing I can tell.

Wow gongrats!!!

But I dont think we're going to get any better of an image than what exists now. Interpolation only guesses what would be between say two or three pixels as the image is enlarged (to add more pixels). After interpolation, the resolution does get higher but as you zoom in on a 1 to 1 pixel scale of the enlarged image, the image turns blury due to the interpolation process (or "guessing" process). As FROADER suggested, it would be best if the designers keep the size of the printed picture down to a few inches. And as RICK said, 300 DPI is prefered but I think about 150 would suffifice since this is what you have to work with.

So assuming 150 DPI for now (which is about typical for newspaper - not magazines), scaling the image down to about ~3" from ~6" (as FROADER's screen cap displays) and bumping the "Resolution" from 72 pixels/inch to 150 pixels/inch should give you an image that should print okay. Doing so may do a little "interpolation" but it shouldnt be much because the resolution is bumped about twice but the physical size is downsized by half - so no real loss of information or pixel guessing.

But I would just send them what you have. Let them take care of the resolution, white balancing, saturation and all that shinanigan :D There are some fancy shmancy filters out there that can "guess" a little better during the interpolation process than whats available in PhotoShop but again, its trying to guess at information that isnt really there.

I say go "re-create" the picture. Go buy some window chalk and go wheelin'

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The photo editor called me today and he only wants this photo:


He is on a tight sked and I'm out of town without access to the original. He said that they will comp the layout with the low res image and wait for me to send them the original.

Hopefully that will work with his crew down there. He seemed very anxious to get the image ASAP, but there is just no way I can get it to him before July 1st:(