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How to Take a Web-Worthy Digital Photograph

Requirements and Recommendations

Class submissions for this project will include a digital photograph of the student collage and a text file of the accompanying writing component. Digital cameras make capturing and sharing images easy. However, your should keep a few guidelines in mind, so that the photos you take will meet our requirements and be of high quality. We want student artwork to look its best on the Web site!

Photos must be no larger than two megabytes (2MB). Standard point-and-shoot digital cameras should easily take photographs of two megabytes or less. To determine how big a picture is, upload the image to your computer, right click on the image file, and look at properties. The size of the image will be indicated. The photo below was taken with a standard 5.1 megapixel camera and is 560 kilobytes (KB). That's just over half a megabyte and well within the range we're requesting.

For better image quality, we discourage using a camera phone or any camera with a capability of less than 3.1 megapixels. Additionally, we need photographs to be in .jpg format. Most cameras save pictures as .jpgs, but you should confirm that your photograph is in this format before submitting it.

Taking the Picture

For best results place the camera on a tripod or another stable object. In your hands, a camera can take very blurry pictures. To achieve the best focus, most cameras require that the camera be a specified minimum distance from the subject you are photographing. Check your camera's user manual for more information. From your camera's suggested minimum distance, you can zoom to get a better shot.

With No Tripod With Tripod

Photo taken using no tripod.

Photo taken with a tripod.

Proper lighting is important when taking your photograph, especially if the student collage contains glossy elements. We don't want light glare to wash out important parts of the collage. To take the best photograph, position the camera body parallel to the collage. Use indirect light to cut down on glare and disperse light evenly over the whole collage. When framing the photograph, don't zoom in so much that the frame contains nothing but the collage; instead, include a two-inch border around the collage to make sure you get the whole work in the photograph.

With No Tripod With Tripod

Poor lighting and photo taken with camera body not parallel to collage

Proper lighting.

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