How to Properly Resize Images in Photoshop

If you like sharing your photographs online, whether on Facebook or on your own blog, you should learn how to properly resize your images. While your camera can take very high resolution photographs, it is always a good idea to down-size or “down-sample” those images, not only because most websites won’t accept large images, but also because making those images smaller will actually make them look better, if done correctly. In this quick tutorial, I will show you the proper way to resize images in Photoshop. I have seen people employ all kinds of different techniques when it comes to resizing images in Photoshop. The below method is how I personally do it and it has been working great for me, at least based on your feedback. You can employ this technique to any photograph – whether it is a portrait or a sweeping landscape.

Puerto Rico

When I wrote about the benefits of a high-resolution sensor, I used the word “down-sampling” when talking about reducing noise and increasing sharpness in high-resolution images. Right after I posted the article, I got plenty of questions from our readers, asking about what the down-sampling process is like and how it can be done. I then realized that many photographers are used to the term “resizing” and have never heard of the term “down-sampling” before. I often use the word “down-sampling”, because “resizing” applies to both increasing and decreasing image resolution (and hence its size), while “down-sampling” only applies to reducing an image.

1) Why Resize / Down-Sample Images?

Why would you want to resize an image? Your camera is a very advanced tool and it contains millions of pixels. This is good if you want to print your images, but what if you want to share those photographs online? Many websites won’t even let you upload high resolution images, while others like Facebook will down-size them for you, automatically lowering the resolution and quality of those photographs. Because this automated photo reduction process is often not optimized for best quality, it can make your resized photo appear soft and might even result in loss of colors. To prevent that, it is always a good idea to properly resize your images before you use them online. This way, you are in full control of how your photo should look.

2) The image resizing workflow

Once again, there are many different ways to down-sample images. Here is the workflow I personally use for my Photographs:

  1. Import images into Lightroom
  2. Make necessary adjustments to the image I want to resize
  3. Open the image in Photoshop
  4. Clean up the image (sensor dust specks, unwanted objects, etc) using spot healing and other tools
  5. Do additional image adjustments like contrast boost, dodge and burn, levels and curves, etc
  6. Run a single pass of noise reduction (only applies if there is visible noise at 100%)
  7. Run a single pass of sharpening at 50-75% (Unsharp Mask) – this step is only needed if you will be using the high resolution image for print
  8. Down-sample the image to target resolution (target resolution is typically 1024 pixels wide for horizontals and 500 pixels wide for verticals)
  9. Run another pass of sharpening at 25-50% (Unsharp Mask)
  10. Export the image in sRGB color profile

The process might seem complex, but it is actually not. I do not do this with every image – only the images I want to showcase (like when publishing wallpapers, etc). Everything else gets processed very simply, by just exporting directly from Lightroom.

3) The image resizing process

  1. First, let’s open our photograph in Photoshop by going to File->Open and selecting the photograph we want to edit:
    Photoshop Edit

    Make sure to pick the full resolution file, not a previously resized version. If you use Lightroom, simply right click on the target image and then select Edit->Open in Photoshop. I am assuming that you have already worked on your photograph and adjusted its exposure, levels, saturation, etc. (Camera RAW or Lightroom). Always make sure to edit problem areas in full resolution, so either do it using Lightroom’s built-in tools or in Photoshop. I prefer the latter when I know that I will be working in Photoshop.

  2. Once the full resolution image is edited, run a single pass of noise reduction. I prefer a selective noise reduction process that only cleans up noise in problem areas. If you do not know how to properly reduce noise, see my Noise Reduction Tutorial. I prefer to use commercial tools like Nik Software Dfine for selective noise reduction, because they do it much cleaner and give the best results. If you do not have a commercial tool for this, use Lightroom’s built-in noise reduction tool, I find it to work better than Photoshop’s “Reduce Noise” filter. Here is a screenshot of Nik Software Dfine reducing noise:
    Nik Software Dfine

    The purpose is to reduce noise in the sky and other affected areas of the image.

  3. This step is only needed if you plan to keep the original image in full resolution for print. There is no practical reason to sharpen an image before you down-scale it (big thanks to Mark for correcting me). If your purpose is only to publish an image to the web, then skip this step completely.

    Make sure to apply a good sharpening technique to your high-resolution image. While commercial tools are great for this step, Photoshop’s built-in filters like “Unsharp Mask” and “Smart Sharpen” work great too. Here I am using 75% sharpening with 1 pixel radius:

    Photoshop Unsharp Mask

    Again, there are many different ways to sharpen images. If you prefer to sharpen in Lightroom, see my “how to sharpen images in Lightroom” article.

  4. Now we are at a very important step – we will be down-sampling the image to lower the image resolution. To accomplish this, go to Image->Image Size and you will be presented with the following dialog:
    Photoshop Image Size

    At this point, you have to select the target resolution. I personally export 1024 pixels wide, but you might need to export in smaller or larger sizes (depending on what you want to do with it). Make sure to check “Constrain Proportions” on the bottom. Now type the target pixel size in the “Width” input with “pixels” selected next to it. As you type the width, you will see that the height will automatically adjust to a smaller number. For me, Photoshop automatically picked “681”, as seen below:

    Photoshop Image Size Resized

    The next big task is to select a resampling method. On the very bottom of the screen you should see a dropbox with the following choices: Nearest Neighbor, Bilinear, Bicubic, Bicubic Smoother and Bicubic Sharper. I personally favor the “Bicubic (best for smooth gradients)” one, because it does a great job in reducing noise without sharpening the image (which we have already done). Occasionally I use “Bicubic Sharper” for some images, but “Bicubic” is my preference. Click OK after you are done making your choice.

  5. Now the image is much smaller in size. Noise should be completely gone as well (assuming it was not too noisy to start with), thanks to the Bicubic down-sampling method that we have used in the previous step. Now it is time to sharpen the image a little more, which will be the final step of the process before we extract it. Once again, either use a good selective sharpening process, or Photoshop’s “Unsharp Mask” as I have:
    Photoshop Unsharp Mask Second Pass

    Remember, this is your final step to make your image look good, so be very careful in sharpening it. Pick an are of the image with the most detail and play with the sharpening “Amount”. I set mine on “50%” and it was plenty to bring out the detail I want. I could do “75%” with a 1 pixel radius and still get a good result though, so the range of 50%-75% seems to work great for this particular image. Every photo is different though, so you might find yourself using between 25-75%. Make sure not to over-sharpen the image!

  6. The final step is to extract the image for the web. Do not simply use the “Save” function – it will create a huge file that is not appropriate for the web. Instead, go to File->Save for Web & Devices. A screen will come up, as shown below:
    Save for Web

    This screen is very important, because it controls the format, resolution and other important things that will be embedded to your image. First, select JPEG as the format. I typically set my Quality to “80%”, which is a good target for photographs. I find that anything lower than 70% visibly degrades image quality and anything above 80% is an overkill for the web. Make sure that both “Optimized” and “Embed Color Profile” are checked. Blur should be at 0 and Matte does not matter (white by default). Next, make sure to check “Convert to sRGB” – you need this so that the colors in your photos are displayed correctly. I also often leave my “Copyright” metadata. Click Save, pick a location where you want to save the final image, give it a name, then click Save again.

    I have been asked a lot about the PPI (pixels per inch) setting that I use on my web photos. Whether you use Lightroom, Photoshop or any other image processing software, the value you use for PPI does not matter. You can leave it at whatever value (I believe 72 is default) and you don’t need to change anything. The PPI value is only important for print – changing it while exporting images for the web will only add metadata to the file and will have no impact on how it is actually displayed on a monitor.

That’s it! Here is my final image processed with the above steps:

Puerto Rico

And here is another image that was processed the same way, from my “Best of 2011” collection:

Sunset Rainbow

NIKON D3S + 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 38mm, ISO 3200, 1/50, f/8.0

Click here to download the above image in 19201200 Wallpaper resolution.

My next tutorial will be on resizing and optimizing images for Facebook. For those who use Lightroom, I will post a separate article on the best way to resize images in Lightroom.


  1. 1) Suhaimi
    January 13, 2012 at 2:26 am

    Mr. Nasim;

    Great tips and workflow. I really appreciate it and it’s always interesting to find out ‘how do you do it’ to get such quality web photos. Thank you :)


  2. 2) Sunil
    January 13, 2012 at 2:40 am

    Superb article.
    I’m a regular reader of your blog, and I know how much efforts it requires to write an article.
    Thanks a lot to you. Your blog has helped me immensely in improving my photography.


  3. 3) Angie
    January 13, 2012 at 5:12 am

    Thank you for sharing this article.

  4. January 13, 2012 at 6:07 am

    I am somehow soo surprised you are using Windows.. :) Great and very helpful articles though!

    • January 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm

      Martins, I have never been a fan of Apple because of their high prices on the PCs and Laptops :) They have great products, but too expensive in my opinion. My custom-built PC cost me $1,500. If I bought an Apple with the same configuration, it would have cost me $4,000. Love my iPhone and my iPad though!

    • 4.2) Derek
      January 27, 2012 at 4:55 pm

      “I am somehow soo surprised you are using Windows”
      I’m not. Had it been 20 years ago, I would agree, as the programs available for MAC were simply not available for Windows – or were very poor examples of! This is no longer the case and the same tools (or equal alternatives) are available on both platforms.
      … And (as Nasim said), Apple are over priced.

  5. 5) deana
    January 13, 2012 at 6:48 am

    Thanks for the tutorial! I use regular photoshop but often do the sharpening, noise reduction in Iphoto. Is it better to do it in photoshop? Your photos are an inspiration to us all.

    • January 13, 2012 at 2:21 pm

      Deana, iPhoto should work well too, but with Photoshop you can use all kinds of tools, so it has richer editing features.

  6. January 13, 2012 at 6:53 am

    Nasim, leaving the copyright metadata in ‘save for web’ with Photoshop, doesn’t that still strip the rest of the EXIF data like shutter, ISO, aperture, etc.?

    • January 13, 2012 at 2:21 pm

      Aaron, correct, it does. You would have to specify to keep all metadata if you want everything…

  7. 7) Derik Tage
    January 13, 2012 at 7:01 am

    Great article…looking forward to the photos for facebook and in lightroom since that’s the place and tool i’m using for my galery at the moment.

    • January 13, 2012 at 2:22 pm

      Derik, will publish those this weekend!

      • 7.1.1) Aaron Priest
        January 13, 2012 at 2:53 pm

        I too typically use Lightroom. Are you going to mention Jeffrey Friedl’s export plugins? They are a real time saver for me!

  8. 8) BenCK
    January 13, 2012 at 8:36 am

    I’m definitely curious to know what you think of the differences between processing through Photoshop for the web and through Lightroom for the same purpose. I usually export smaller, web-ready versions from the Raw files through Lightroom using its export process (typically set the width required and then set the resolution to 96 ppi, quality setting can be adjusted as needed of course). I’ve been pleased with the results and it’s simple since I don’t have to leave Lightroom during the process. The photos on the front page of my website were done this way.

    Thanks for the great tutorial though. Your article is great information to have and this step in posting to the web is often overlooked by many.

    • January 13, 2012 at 2:23 pm

      Ben, Lightroom gives a lot less options to tweak the final output of the image. With Photoshop, you have 100% control on the resized image. I often use Lightroom to export images myself, but when I need to showcase my work, I only do it in Photoshop…

      • 8.1.1) BenCK
        January 13, 2012 at 2:26 pm

        When/if you do a writeup on exporting using Lightroom, I’d be curious to see you post side-by-side comparisons of the same shot, one using Photoshop and the other using Lightroom. That way it would be clear to see what exactly you’re getting when using the two different programs.

        • Eric Duminil
          January 16, 2012 at 6:30 am

          +1. Pretty please?

        • Brian
          January 19, 2012 at 7:18 am

          I tried it out on my own. For the convenience, exporting from Lightroom does 99% of the same thing. I would set output sharpening to high.

      • 8.1.2) Matt C
        July 30, 2012 at 9:31 am

        If you’re shooting RAW, Lightroom’s Adjustment Brush is very powerful and easy to use. When I happened upon it, I was blown away. I tweak in Lightroom and then finish the work in Photoshop.

  9. 9) MarkL
    January 13, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Этому ступенчатому методу нет никакого технического обоснования кроме как шаманство и танцы с бубном :) Артефакты накладываются друг на друга с каждым USM и уменьшением. Эта тема была лет 10 назад избита и давно показано, что лучше делать одно уменьшение (bilenear), а потом шарп.

    • January 13, 2012 at 11:27 am

      А что если я Вам докажу что Вы не правы? Лет 10 назад таких методов как selective noise-reduction и selective sharpening не существовало. У меня есть конкретные примеры, когда артефактов и шума на много больше если я просто уменьшу фотографию и потом сверху пройдусь с unsharp mask.

      • 9.1.1) MarkL
        January 13, 2012 at 11:41 am

        10 лет назад был и 7-й Photoshop и PhotoKit sharpener и многое другое. Показывайте примеры. 2 кропа 100%:

        1) используя вышеописанный метод
        2) вначале убираете шум как описали, а потом уменьшаете файл сразу до конечного размера и применяете USM (а лучше шарп от Косенко:

        • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
          January 13, 2012 at 12:13 pm

          А, так значит то что Вы назвали шаманством относится только к #7 (sharpen before resizing)?

        • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
          January 13, 2012 at 12:31 pm

          И потом, у меня есть еще одна причина почуму я использую sharpen до того, как уменьшать фотографию – полный размер фотографии я отсавляю для себя, а продолжаю resize и sharpen только для веб-версии. Шумодав точно нужен до resize – это я могу легко доказать. А вот нужен ли sharpen это уже другой вопрос, возможно Вы правы. Сейчас сделаю пару примеров и посмотрю :)

        • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
          January 13, 2012 at 12:56 pm

          Марк, попробовал USM->Resize->USM, сохранил. Затем Resize->USM, сохранил. Первая фотка четче, но только из-за того, что там больше USM. На вторую фотку повысил USM и сохранил заново – никакой разницы не вижу. Вы были правы.

          Сделал то же самое с Nik Software Sharpener и результат точно такой же!

          Спасибо за информацию, сегодня узнал для себя что-то новое, с Вашей помощью :) Changing the article now.

          • MarkL
            January 13, 2012 at 2:29 pm

            :) Не за что. Удачи!

  10. 10) Jorge
    January 13, 2012 at 11:01 am

    I noticed you image is on 72 ppi resolution before you down size it, which is not the case for me, my camera generates files at 240 ppi. Did you down size the resolution as well before starting the down sampling process? Thank you so much for the tutorial.

    • 10.1) MarkL
      January 13, 2012 at 11:05 am

      PPI inside a graphics file is just value; changing this value merely changes the number, and nothing else. Therefore, PPI is irrelevant unless you’re getting into printing.

      Read this:

      • 10.1.1) BenCK
        January 13, 2012 at 11:24 am

        That’s not quite true. The reason to output at 72 ppi for posting on the web is because our monitors only display at that approximate resolution (that’s not even quite correct for all monitors though, I think mine is closer to 96 ppi). It even says that in the link you posted:

        “Use the 72ppi standard when you want to post an image to the Internet (since most people will view the photo on a monitor).”

        Your monitor has to downscale the image if it’s displayed at a resolution that is higher than what the monitor can display. You’ll generally get sharper results if you output the image to the same resolution it will be displayed at, which is on a monitor in this case of course.

        • MarkL
          January 13, 2012 at 11:29 am

          There is NOTHING to downscale. 800×600 @ 72ppi is the same as 800×600 @ 300ppi. Exact same file size. Try it yourself in Photoshop.

          PPI is an arbitrary value for web display.

        • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
          January 13, 2012 at 12:14 pm

          Ben, I have to agree with Mark here – there is no need to set PPI to a higher value than 72.

          • Jorge
            January 13, 2012 at 12:51 pm

            Thank you for all the replies. Just to be clear: there is no need to set the ppi value higher than 72 ppi unless you are printing?

            • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
              January 13, 2012 at 1:30 pm

              Jorge, when you export pictures out of Lightroom or Photoshop, the ppi value does not matter. You can set it to 1 or 65000 and you will an image with exactly the same size.

              PPI is only relevant for print. Whatever ppi value you set upon export, whether it is Lightroom, Photoshop or any other application, all they do is write the ppi value into the file metadata. What this means is that when the photo is sent to print, the printer will already know at which ppi to print. But you can easily override this before you print.

              That’s why it doesn’t matter whether you set it to 72 ppi, 300 ppi or 65000 ppi. I set mine to 72 by default, but I don’t care if it is set to some other number – it is for the web anyway.

          • BenCK
            January 13, 2012 at 12:52 pm

            So why set it to 72 ppi? If it’s arbitrary, why not just leave it at 300 ppi upon export for everything since that’s what is used for prints? The monitor is only going to display it at whatever resolution the monitor was built to (which is commonly 96 ppi).

            • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
              January 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm

              Ben, please read my response above – yes, you can set it to whatever you want. The ppi value data is only written as metadata. It does not expand or reduce image size.

        • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
          January 13, 2012 at 1:40 pm

          Ben, you are confusing things here. In this case for images, ppi is not the same as pixel pitch or dotch pitch – it only relates to the printing process (well, it kind of is, but it is not :)). Your monitor can have a higher dot pitch than somebody else’s, but the only difference between the two would be that an image on your computer would appear smaller, because it has physically more pixels.

          17″ monitors 10 years ago could only squeeze 800-1024 horizontal pixels. Today, 17″ laptop monitors can easily have 1920 horizontal pixels. Physical pixels got smaller.

          Whether I extract an image in 72 ppi or 96 ppi, they will look identical on your monitor. The only way to increase resolution is to increase the dimension of a photo, so that it appears larger. So if we took an old 17″ monitor with 1024 horizontal pixels and played back an image with 1024 pixels, then took a 17″ monitor with 1920 horizontal pixels and played back an image with 1920 pixels, the latter would appear sharper and more detailed. Simply because we are dealing with a 1920 pixel image. If you took two identical 1024 pixel images and used them on these monitors, the high resolution 1920 monitor would simply show the 1024 pixel image smaller :)

          Hope this makes sense :)

          • BenCK
            January 13, 2012 at 1:55 pm

            Yes, I understand that after thinking about it more. I was basing my previous responses on not only the information in Mark’s link, but also information I had read elsewhere on the internet. All of those sources would say to export the photo to the resolution of the monitor for web use.

            • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
              January 13, 2012 at 2:25 pm

              Ben, perhaps I should write another article on PPI to clear things up? Looks like this is a famous topic that is misunderstood by many… (I have received lots of emails on topic so far).

            • BenCK
              January 13, 2012 at 2:32 pm

              Nasim, that’s probably not a bad idea. Or maybe even just adding a quick statement in this tutorial addressing the issue would make things clear enough. It does surprise me how much information out there does say to export to the monitor resolution when in fact it shouldn’t matter at all. It’s more important to export to the resolution (width and height in pixels) that it will be displayed at on the monitor. I think that’s particularly important for Facebook since we don’t have any control over how wide (in pixels) the image will be displayed. At least when putting an image on your own websites we can tell the site what width to display it at.

            • Profile photo of Nasim Mansurov Nasim Mansurov
              January 13, 2012 at 3:08 pm

              I updated the article and added a paragraph on the PPI setting :)

  11. 11) Jorge
    January 13, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    Nasim, thank you very much for clarifying this. I also think it would be a great idea to write an article on PPi. I read many of your articles and reviews and they are excellent.
    What is confusing to me is that in Photoshop, if I go to image size and have:
    Pixel dimensions: 29 mb
    Document size: aprox. 8×10 inches
    Resolution: 240 pixels per inch

    Then I change the resolution to 72 pixels per inch and I have this:
    Pixel dimensions: 2 .6 mb
    Document size: aprox. 8×10 inches
    Resolution: 72 pixels per inch.

    The image size or document size didn’t change but the file size and pixel dimensions became about 10 times smaller and the image becomes tiny after I click ok on the image size window.. This part is for me a bit confusing. I’m looking forward to your article. Thanks again!

  12. 12) Leslie
    January 13, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    Thanks, this is awesome. I’d love to see a tutorial on how to take two separate photos, edit them and save them as one for side by side shots.

  13. 13) Surinder Gill
    January 14, 2012 at 3:37 am

    Thank U Nasim Bhai, the way U explain stuff is just awesome.

  14. 14) Peter
    January 14, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    Другая статья, очень хорошо сделано. Я сделал копию и займемся.
    продолжайте вашу отличную работу, но не забывайте, чтобы ответить на итальянском языке.

  15. 15) Sudarshan Pol
    January 16, 2012 at 3:52 am

    Hi Nasim,

    This is my first post on your site. I recently purchased a Nikon D3100 camera as I am just a beginner in the DSLR world. Have been following your blogs for about a month now and I can already do wonderful things with my camera as well as in post processing. Thanks a lot for all these wonderful tutorials.

    I have a question regarding post processing the images. Can we have some kind of customized presets in Lightroom apart from the standard ones, for batch processing or may be processing images which were taken in similar conditions. Can you share some tips and tricks for creating such presets.

  16. 16) Bob
    January 17, 2012 at 5:49 am

    Thanks for following up on this request, Nasim. Great job as always.

  17. 17) Javi
    January 17, 2012 at 10:28 am

    Hello Nasim:
    I dont understand why dont you use the true resize or down-sample the imagen in Photoshop.
    That´s the way I do:
    in Image Size, you have to click off (yes, OFF) the”resample image”, that is the way you have got chained the 3 important dimension of the file: Width, Height and Resolution. Oh yes, now you can see the real and true relation between the PPI and width and height. If you change the ppi, you can see how change the other parameter at the same time. You know?
    Now, if you want the file for Internet, put it on 72 ppi. The dimension resize. Now, click on the “resample Image” and we have only chained the 2 dimension. Write the dimension you want to upload to internet, and you see above the new weight of the file. Also choose your favourite option in “resample image”.
    I am not worried about noise in my photos because I am still a photographer of slide and B/W film, but I digitalize with scanner that i can afford.
    Perhaps this year I will become digital with the new Nikon D 800 and its 36 MP sensor. I wonder if it will be close to the slides. The film photo is going expensive and loose many many time in going and back from the lab.
    Very good web site, Nasim
    Hasta pronto. I´ll see you later. Do oskorogo
    Javi, from Spain

  18. 18) Justin
    January 19, 2012 at 4:09 am

    Hi Nasim,
    I’ m a newbie in photography and I have a lot of preconceptions. One of which is that a Mac computer is a must for the pros. I was surprised that you mentioned you don’t use it. Can you please share what are the requirements for a good photography computer (hardware, software, etc)?
    I know you’ve been told numerous times but i need to say it too: you’re a gift to the photography world! Keep up the good work!:)

  19. 19) Kathleen McCulloch
    January 22, 2012 at 11:44 am

    Dear Nasim, I love your work, reviews, feedback to us, just everything, thank you so much.
    I have enjoyed and learned a lot by this resizing article.

    Can you please make one just like it with the step by steps for preparing photos to upload to stock agencies for submission? Or would this one above work? Or direct me to a good tutorial?

    I would so very much appreciate your help and thanks for your timely and consistent weekly emails, love them, read them faithfully. I shoot Canon products but love and learn from Nikon as well.
    Thanks very much, Kathleen.

  20. 20) Zsolt
    January 24, 2012 at 2:21 am

    Nasim, enjoyed your article very much, quite useful as any others. I am eager to read your promised article about image down-sampling with LR, as well, as I am rather on the natural photographer side, who prefer to minimize image manipulation and for this reason I need and use LR instead of PS.


  21. 21) SHARAFI
    January 25, 2012 at 1:15 am

    What the best size to print 8r photo

  22. 22) Tom Sweet
    January 26, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Your articles and postings are extremely helpful. I can’t thank you enough for sharing this information. Also, your photographs are absolutely breathtaking.

  23. 23) frederick rico
    January 30, 2012 at 4:42 am

    I have to say…..thank you very much. I have learned so much from you and lola….like me,, i dnt have the luxury of extra money to hone my skills,, but because of you,, i am learning fast to improve my hobby in photography. Hope someday i will be able to repay your good deeds to people like us. This is all i can do right now …to thank you and include you in our prayers…

  24. 24) Srikanth K Iyengar
    January 30, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    Nasim, Thank you so much for this very informative blog & you made my life easier :)

    Srikanth K Iyengar

  25. 25) Goran
    February 9, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    thank You for this tutorial, I’ll try with my photos as well. There is one small comment on that “Save for web” in Photoshop for which I dislike this function. With Save As function in Photoshop You can control quality only with big steps but it keeps EXIF information while Save for web does not as I like to embed my data and photo information. It’s a pity that Adobe ommited a checkbox Keep EXIF information in Save for Web dialog :(


  26. 26) Babu G S
    February 24, 2012 at 4:57 am

    Dear Nasim,
    I’m using the script……Image processor mode to convert JPEG & raw files to convert in to small JPEG files …is this a safe way ??? am i doing other way round ??? please guide I’m a regular reader of your blog.. its always awesome…
    helping me in many ways…..
    thanks a ton for that…

  27. 27) Christoph
    April 1, 2012 at 5:07 am

    As you do not mention gamma in your article, I wonder whether Photoshop can now resize images correctly. See:

  28. 28) Murat Mutlu
    April 11, 2012 at 6:48 am

    another great review,
    here is my humble experience for sharpening Nasim:
    unsharp mask tool
    for sizes around 1000 pixel (web purposes)
    most natural and eye catching sharpening results achieved by:
    amount >100 can go to 150 easily
    radius = 0.3 (this number is critical and 0.3 is best for around 1000 pixel; as much as photo sizes gets bigger this number can increase like 0.4 for 2000 pixel; radius 1 is good for more than 5000-6000 pixel sharpening)
    try it please and you’ll see considerable difference in the sharpness quality compare to above numbers…
    it seems simple but gives a huge edge! trust this is tested and approved!

    here is an example what I mean:

    • April 12, 2012 at 11:48 pm

      Murat, excellent examples and very helpful advice, teşekkürler!

  29. 29) Alexandros Dimitriou
    April 16, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Can i do the same with capture Nx2?

  30. 30) Robbo
    June 21, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Thanks mate. Very informative.

  31. 31) Louise Diamond
    July 13, 2012 at 1:25 pm


  32. 32) Matt C
    July 30, 2012 at 9:37 am

    Forgive me if this is in the comments–there are quite a few of them and I did not read them all. I’m looking for the best method to up-sample an image, that is, make it larger. I’m often given drawings that need to be converted to vector. In Photoshop I can use the magic wand or select color range tools to create selections which can then be converted into paths. Small images, though, result in poor/inaccurate paths. Making the image larger rectifies that, but the line edges become soft as new pixels are interpolated, which results in inaccuracies all their own. Any suggestions?
    Matt Clara

  33. 33) Rick
    August 1, 2012 at 3:00 am

    An Awesome Step by Step Tutorial, Ive been wanting to create 980 x 300s that “Stand Out”…..

  34. 34) Rumi S
    October 2, 2012 at 5:21 am

    Nasim, did you ever end up writing the article on preparing images for Facebook? I was not able to find it on your website. I’ve tried various techniques, but Facebook turns most of my beautiful photographs to fecal matter. I have read many articles and tried different Apple scripts, but have not been able to get it quite right. Please Help!

    • 34.1) Mark S
      February 17, 2013 at 9:46 pm

      Rumi S,

      Did you ever get a response or solution for your facebook resizing question?? If so, can you kindly send me the link to a tutorial..??!! Please!


      Thanks, Mark

  35. 35) Ian
    October 28, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Hi Nasim,
    Thanks for your work and teaching. Superb.
    I am having trouble ‘resizing’ a RAW 8.1 MB image (NEF from D3s) to a JPG measuring 600 height and 400 width at 72 pixels per inch. When I do it I keep ending up with an image around 200 kb and I am trying get an image around 1MB or just under. what am I doing wrong?
    Can you help?

  36. 36) Rick
    December 14, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Hi Nasim, Extremely awesome post

    I have a question on vertical images for the web, is there a common pixel format size, because a lot of vertical images posted seem squashed and elongated? Is this occurrence to do with monitor values or pixel formatting? Ive cropped vertical images like portraits through CS5 on a 23″ widescreen monitor and had them posted, but seem to look squashed and horrible on “some” other monitors?
    Horizontal formatted images are fine? Would really like to get this sorted to understand if its the process through my own monitor resolution or its a wider problem…

    With Regards


  37. 37) brenda
    December 24, 2012 at 1:55 am

    If i want to crop the image, at what stage would i do it?

  38. 38) Janet
    February 10, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    Trying to figure out how to do a batch re-sizing of images so I can get uncropped work prints at Costco

  39. 39) Mark S
    February 17, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    Great article, and thank you.. …BUT…

    WHERE IS THE RESIZING ARTICLE SPECIFIC FOR FACEBOOK THAT YOU PROMISED..? I really need it …if you haven’t written it please direct me elsewhere on the net for a tutorial!

    thanks in advance, Mark!

  40. 40) Mark S
    February 17, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    By the way, how does this resizing (downsampling) technique for multiple files…??

    thanks, mark

  41. 41) madelyn
    March 5, 2013 at 11:42 am

    thanks for the downsampling article, it really made clear the issues around it. I was just wondering why not change the size to 1024 pixel width and choose downsampling method to bicubic best for smoother right in the “save for web and devices ” dialog box? would this not save a step in the processing? I’m in photoshop cs5 by the way, if that matters.

    thanks, Madelyn

  42. 42) Ahmad
    March 9, 2013 at 1:40 pm


    I have tried and did the same way, Its really impressive and worked out very good as here such samples from my page :

    Thank you Nasim for such great tips to overcome this real challenge!

  43. 43) Henry
    May 3, 2013 at 5:07 am

    Dear Nasim,
    May I ask you a question about downsizing images?
    I use photoshop. I nearly only use JPG. Until March 2013 the Nikon D700, now the D800.
    I make my photo-editing (usually, auto-colour, auto-contrast, many times slighlty brighter or darker,
    sometimes slight colour changes, often cutting, often dirt retouching [my kids …], and nearly always sharpening).
    At the end, when I want to save the edited photo, photoshop asks me about the wished quality.
    For the D700 photos I usually took high quality, “11”.
    Maximum is “12”, but it increases file size.
    For the D800 I use between medium and high quality, between “5” to “11”.
    I have never used the downsizing technique as recommended by you here in the article.
    I have nearly never problems with noise so I do not see any need for noise-reduction (however,
    my D800 photos sometimes suffer of lack of sharpness).
    My question: Is this downsizing technique at the end offerend by photoshop (“quality”, “5” to “11”) ok?
    Thanks for an answer,

  44. 44) Helen Bradshaw
    May 12, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    Great article. I’m experiencing a bit of an issue with resizing. I hope someone can help. I have a photo which I export from Lightroom sized at 4480 x 2520. I need the image to be 940 x 452. When I resize the image in PhotoShop and input my height, the width becomes 680 not 940. I’ll force the image to the size I want but the image becomes stretched.

    • 44.1) MattC
      May 12, 2013 at 5:06 pm

      Hi Helen,
      4480 x 2520 doesn’t convert directly to 940 x 452, it converts to 940 x 529 (that’s if you resize and set the width to 940 pixels), 0r 804 x 452 if you resize and set the height to 452. Where you got the 680 number, I don’t know. In order to get it to 940 x 452, some of the height is going to have to be cropped. To make it fit exactly without cropping you would have to stretch the image by turning off Constrain Proportions when you resize in Photoshop, which is likely what you did and why you ended up with a stretched image.

      So, resize (make sure you tick that Constrain Proportions check box when you do) to 940 pixels wide and crop some of the height to make it 452 pixels high.

  45. 45) François
    May 20, 2013 at 2:53 am

    Hi Nasim,

    Thank you for this article, and for all the other one : I’m really spending a lot of time on your website ! So many useful informations…

    I have a question about resizing ratio : do you get a better result with a “simple” ratio ?

    For instance, I have the intuition that you get a better result if you down-size the image to 1/4 of its size. This way, you just take 4 pixels to make a new one, wich is simpler than having an image 7.352/10 of the orignial size. I know nothing about algorithms : is there some sense in these thoughts ?

    Thank you

  46. May 22, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Dear Nasim
    I have spent a few days surfing the web to learn about down-sampling and I must admit that this is the best article I have read. Very impressive indeed but I wonder if you could develop on this and let me know what if we want to crop that picture in different sizes for the web?

    Let me explain:
    We have purchased high resolution (above 8,000 x 6,000 px) royalty-free stock images for our new website. We intend to show each image in 4-8 different sizes, all with a different ratio (e.g. 3:2 or 3:3 ratio, etc) which means we may have to resize or crop or both. Of course we want to maintain quality and there are over a thousand images.

    Thus, using a high resolution image, what would be your workflow to create different sized images for the web. Your views and suggestions will be highly appreciated.

    I am travelling to the States tomorrow so it is likely that you may not hear from me but I promise to reply immediately on my return end this month.

    With kind regards
    Harish Kohli

  47. 47) Irfan
    May 23, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Thankx Mr Nasim for sharing knowledge…. :)

  48. 48) Hnao
    May 29, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    Hello Bro. can u help me to resize image for 50 x 15 feet flex, how i can increase the size of small image for that flex ?
    if the image size is 10x 10 inch. and i want to use this image for flex?

  49. July 2, 2013 at 8:45 am

    Thank you so much! Great information! Keep it coming! :)

  50. September 10, 2013 at 10:10 am


    I have a simple question I hope you can answer.

    Let’s say I import a RAW image into CS5 with a resolution of 360 ppi and an image size of approximately 20 x 13 inches.

    Then, I want to crop from the image a 15 x 11 portion without changing the resolution and without resampling/interpolation.

    Next, I enter 15 in the width box, 11 in the height box, and 360 ppi in the resolution box, and turn off resampling in the image size window.

    After cropping, will my 15 x 11 image at 360 ppi be created without resampling/interpolation…e.g. without the addition or subtraction of new pixels?

    In other words, will all the original pixels that were in the RAW image be unchanged… even though there are less of them?

    Thank you for considering this question,


    • 50.1) Matt Clara
      September 10, 2013 at 10:47 pm

      If you are cropping EXACTLY 15 in. x 11 in. out of your picture, then of course that bit will be 360 ppi. If you crop out something more or something less than 15 x 11 and then resize it while insisting on 360 ppi, then of course interpolation will take place. In other words, you could use the marquee selection tool and choose exact size, which you can set to 15 in x 11 in. Then click in the image and a selection exactly 15 x 11 will be selected. You can drag it around to get it where you want it and then use the crop command to crop the image down to your selection and that will give you exactly 15 x 11 x 360 ppi of unaltered/uninterpolated pixels. If by chance the 15 x 11 selection isn’t exactly what you want, maybe it crops out too much or maybe too little, you can set the selection tool to 15 x 11 ratio, drag the selection to contain what you want and then crop, but you will have to resize to 15 x 11 inches while maintaining the 360 ppi and interpolation will take place. However, 360 ppi is more than you need to make a great print, so if you choose the later course, when you resize, turn off interpolation and see how many ppi it wants to give you when you tell it to be 15 x 11 inches. Anything over 240 is going to be fine from normal viewing distances and no interpolation will have taken place.

  51. 51) Nick
    September 13, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Thank you very much or your feedback…much appreciated!

  52. 52) Stacia
    September 17, 2013 at 11:39 pm

    Howdy would you mind sharing which blog platform you’re working with?

    I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having a tough time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution
    and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your design seems
    different then most blogs and I’m looking for something unique.
    P.S Apologies for being off-topic but I had to ask!

  53. 53) john smith
    October 13, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Great article Mr NASIM … please I have a question … I read on a website that I should resize the image ( in pixels ) before making any adjustments or processing ( photoshop cs6 ) is this right ?


  54. 54) Lloyd
    November 11, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I just want to ask if all cameras does “downsampling”? What I mean is, how does all cameras produce “medium” and “small” images from their native size of “large”. For example, a dslr has a 24mp sensor. So when set to “large”, the sensor will utilize all pixels. Now what i want to know is how does the “medium” and “small” images produce? Does the camera use only 12mp when set to “medium” and there is a mechanism that block the rest of mp in the sensor? or does the camera uses all of the 24mp and downsample it to the users setting of “12mp” medium and “6mp” small.

    Hoping for your response.


  55. 55) Axel
    July 18, 2014 at 9:17 am

    I know this is a very old post, but still, thanks!

  56. 56) Craven Greene
    January 18, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    Nice, but it doesn’t explain how i, essentially, need to create a whole new image by taking a “landscape” shot and turn it into a “portrait” shot and still keep the integrity of the original shot. Example: I’ve a shot by our bass player’s wife on a cheap Kodak digital that by default gave us a 10.xx by 8 image from which I want to make a standard letter size poster. (10×8 landscape to 8.5×11 portrait.) resizing makes it all “pixelly” and I can’t have that.

    • 56.1) PasserBy
      February 7, 2015 at 5:29 am

      Hi, I don’t think sharpening works that way. There is no magical method to replace details that your cheap kodak failed to capture. You can try reducing the PPI value when you crop to 8.5×11, but that will probably lead to a blurry print too.

  57. 57) barb
    February 14, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    Hi ..i take images using a microscope i want to be able to enlarge those images to wall size canvas’ least 1900×1500..i am not very ‘literate’ when it comes to resolution and pixels and all that..I am trying to learn and read as much as i can online to try and understand it..!..are you able to tell me if its possible to resize or do something to my images in photoshop to then enable me to enlarge them to big scale wall art?..any help or suggestions greatly appreciated..

  58. 58) Laura Winn Smith
    June 17, 2015 at 11:41 am

    Thank you!! This is fantastic – just what I was looking for! I was doing many of the steps, but not enough. Can’t wait to try it.

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