One of the many things that it’s valuable to test is optimum scale. Images affect us differently at different scales. Small prints draw you close to them providing an intimate experience. Large prints envelope you in an immersive experience requiring a greater distance to see the entire image. One of the things my workshop students do is find optimum scales for their images. While there are many practical considerations that may modify their final choices (like final presentation space), determining an optimum scale reveals an artist’s intention and the nature of their work more clearly. How do you determine optimum scale? Test it! There’s no substitute for fully experiencing the effects of changing scale. Make different sized prints and compare them side by side. Alternately, projecting an image on a wall at different scales can be similarly revealing. Here, again, side by side comparison reveals more. Then, put your impressions into words – verbally or in writing.

Here veteran professional landscape and garden photographer Roger Foley shows two prints of the same image at different scales. While he feels a larger scale is ideal for his imagery, he’ll sometimes make smaller prints to accommodate smaller presentation spaces and client requests.

Find out more about Roger Foley here.

Look for my upcoming article on Scale in Photoshop User magazine. Find out about PSU here.

Find out about my Fine Digital Print Workshop series here.

Find out about The Fine Digital Print Expert workshop here.


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