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Fit photo to a print size for printing. without loss?


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I recently tried to have a digital photo printed via an online vendor (MPIX) and found that my photo would be chopped off at both ends because it didn't match the proportions of the paper sizes they offer. The photo is 5283 x 3419 pixels. I am a casual photographer; I do not print photos at home, but I do minor editing, which sometimes entails cropping and/or stitching photos to form panoramas.

The ends Mpix would cut off contain people in a wide group photo shot, but they could not print the whole width of the photo on an 8x10, because their equipment always fills the shorter dimension (height in this case). None of their paper sizes allowed full width. That seems ludicrous. I am perfectly willing to cut a mat to cover the borders above and below a print to frame it, if necessary, but I can't accept their truncating a photo.

To me, the obvious way to resolve the mismatch is to digitally add strips above and below the photo to make the pixel count proportions match the frame proportions, then print the 8x10, and cut a mat to mask the added portions (with border additions to both height and width, a mat would not even be needed). Searching the net, I could not find a way to add border strips to my photo.

Surely there is a simpler way to print the entirety of a digital photo with a L x W ratio that doesn't conform to standard paper sizes, what am I overlooking?

I use Windows 10.  The tools I have on my computer, in approx order of usage, are PhotoScape, Paint.net, PhotoImpact 12, and Paintshop Pro X8. To me its not worth the multi-bucks for fancy photo edit programs like Photoshop.


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Yes I did. I only came across you today, via the article you reference, but it didn't seem to directly address my issue, except for solution 5, which didn't really tell me how to "add the artistic border"; that discussion usually leads to PhotoShop, much too expensive and complex for my needs. I am trying to help out my sister, who is only a small step away from being computer-illiterate; Mpix has sizes that would work for printing the photo, but sis wants to fill the width of an existing 8x10 frame. That led me to the idea of using borders as you suggest, but I couldn't find a way to do it without PhotoShop. Anyway, as I got into the issue (adding uneven borders), I find I'd like an answer for myself as well.

I see now that I can probably download a trial version of PhotoShop to avoid buying it, but I'm certain the learning curve would be steep, even just to accomplish the border task (I can't even handle the simpler tools I already have).

I'm looking for a way to create a frame in the LxW ratio I desire, and place a photo where I want it inside that frame.

BTW, the need for fitting the photo into a larger border was brought on by a similar dilemma, where I was trying to add a border on another photo she wanted to have Mpix print on a raised canvas frame; MPIX wraps the edges of the photo around the sides of the frame, which would have cut off people's toes. I was able to find a way to add a border using layers in Paint.net (but it was a uniform width border all around the photo, with no way to change the centering of the photo, so would work for the canvas frame and not for the 8x10 frame issue because it would only make the photo smaller, not change the proportions)  



Edited by Wayne
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I did come across a software product that can do what I want (add to the height or width of a photo to bring it to the 8x10 ratio I want). That program is iResizer, and it allows you to mark the part of a photo you wish to preserve unchanged, while specifying the pixel count in width and height that you desire. In my case it added more sky above the subject of the photo.

It is a chargeable program (but inexpensive), downloadable at iResizer.com. When I tested the free download version, it seemed to degrade (just a bit) the part of the photo I wanted preserved, but perhaps I might be able to find ways around that if I play with it some more.

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