Advice for printing photos – a few things you want to know before ordering prints.

Just because I wanted a cute picture on top!

Sometimes, you might need a little advice on printing photos. It happens at least once every year. I get an email or FB message that goes like this – “Hey Rachel, I printed (senior’s name) photo for my wall and it cut off the top of his head. Why did it do that?” Then I ask what size it was printed in and if they adjusted the crop on the order. Sometimes people don’t realize you have the option to adjust the crop in your order.

It’s all about the ratio of your short edge to your long edge. But don’t worry, it’s not too complicated. When I deliver your images, they are all sized to be a 4×6. If you print a 4×6 there will be no cropping. However, when you print a 5×7, the top and/or bottom of your photo (if it’s a vertical photo) will be trimmed to allow for the short edge of your photo to fill the print. If you print an 8×10, more of the long edges will be trimmed.

If your original photo is a close-up, you’ll want to be aware of that when you’re printing. Good news – you can adjust where the crop is no matter where you’re printing from. All the sites are different but you should be able to see the option to adjust the crop somewhere close to the photo after you select the size. More good news, if you want a large print and you don’t want it cropped at all, good printers have plenty of size options in the 2×3 ratio.

The photos below show the centered crop for each size of this photo of my Levi. Notice how by the time you get to the 8×10 there is almost no space above his head and you don’t see the bottom of the cup anymore.

A note about printers

Your printer is IMPORTANT! Please use a quality lab to print your photos! You can order your photos through me. It’s not required but that does make it easy. I have options for prints, metals and canvases preset but there are a lot more sizes and products I can get you a price on.

If you want to order them from somewhere else, that’s fine too. Mpix ( and Nation’s Photo Lab ( are the two I have used and been happy with. Please do not order your prints from anywhere with a “Wal” in the name. Please. It’s about the quality of the ink the lab uses.

Think of it this way. You have two “color by number” pages in front of you. They are the same the picture. You color one of them using Crayola crayons. You color the other one using a box from the dollar store. The crayon names are the same: green, red, yellow, etc. But the final pictures do not look the same.

I hope this little tidbit was helpful!


leave a comment

Share page to:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *