How big can we go?

Megapixels, resolution, dpi, RAW, bit depth... blah blah blah all things that are relevant to image size and quality. I am going to propose a question and a little activity. When printing images the viewing distance is one of the most important factors. Did you know that I could take almost any size image (4-5mp) and turn it into a billboard image? Kinda makes you think for a second why thats possible... if it doesn't make you wonder... well at least you have some silly images of buffalo to smile at! :)

Blog: How big can we go?

Blog: How big can we go?Blog: How big can we go?

This is possible because we are so so far away from the billboard. Proper viewing distance is key. 2010 will be a year of printing for me among other things. I am getting into what my camera and gear are capable of printing. I have been playing around with genuine fractals lately and have been amazed by its upsizing capabilities. Above is an image that full size is roughly 4000x3500.


The Images attached are at a MASSIVE 12,000 x 8,000 which would print 40 inches wide and 27 inches high. The images are 281% larger than its original.


I would like you (if you are up to it) suffer the wait of downloading the images and view them on your computer. Once the image is downloaded go ahead open it full screen. Now imagine your display as a print or framed image. The more you zoom in the more artifacts you see. One you zoom in a bit you can take a few steps back and see what I mean about viewing distance. So if 25% of the image is filling your entire screen it will give you an idea how a print would look 4x the size of your computer monitor. I have a 24" iMac so I smile at this.  The further you are away from the image more sharpness / clarity it gains. Once you find the right size you will know where in your house the image would fit based off of how far you will be viewing it from. Photo nerds like myself love to check out the image inches from my eye but this will be very few people who view this close.


This is obvious to most but if I made a single person smile at buffalo or learn something about printing than my time has been well spent.



Original Buffy 1

Original Buffy 2

Original Buffy 3

Xtra Large Buffy 1

Xtra Large Buffy 2

Xtra Large Buffy 3


Side Note:

I really really love these big monsters. In a perfect world I would have one as a pet.


Edit: Screen dpi isn't nearly as great as good quality print dpi. consider this.