Preparing Images for the forum (or the web)



Many members have had difficulty in preparing images for use within the PaintDoodles forum.
The size of an image being uploaded to the forum is restricted to 50 Kbytes to ensure that the PaintDoodles web space does not get overwhelmed and that it does not become too costly to run the free forum service.

This tutorial deals with Irfanview which is a free viewer and image manipulation program that has better features than many commercial programs. Because it's free it's available to everyone that uses the forum. Tutorials on other popular photo manipulation programs may be done later.

You can download Irfanview from here


Reducing an Image size using Irfanview.

Load the file you want to reduce into Irfanview: File: Open and navigate to the file on your computer:

irfanview window

The file size in pixels is shown bottom left. The actual size of the file on disc is shown further along (4.24MB).
You may have to repeatedly press the zoom out button (magnifying glass with - sign) to fit the picture in the window.

From the image menu, select Resize/Resample:

Resizing an image

In the dialog box that opens:

Resize dialog box

Make sure that the Preserve aspect ratio box is ticked and the Resize (faster) option is selected.
In the Set new size box.
Make sure that DPI is set to 72.
Select the pixels option.

Input the new size for the image in either the Width box or the Height box. It's usually best to keep the longest side measurement (Width, for a landscape format picture and height for a portrait picture) between 400 and 500 pixels to make sure that the image will be below 50Kbytes: On the the picture below the new size has been set by altering the Width to 450 pixels.

Resize dialog

Press OK

Select File: Save As

save as dialog box

In the Save As dialog that opens, click the options button

save as


On the Save properties dialog that opens set the Save Quality slider to 50 and make sure all the other boxes are unchecked and press OK.

save properties box

Give the image a name in the file name box (don't use any spaces in the file name).
In the Save as type box,  make sure that JPG - JPEG Files is selected from the drop down list and click Save.

save picture box

The new size of the image can be checked either by using Windows Explorer or by opening the newly saved image in Irfanview where the size is shown on the bottom status bar.
In the picture below, the original file of 3072 x 2048 pixels with a size of 4.24Mbytes has been reduced to 450 x 300 pixels with a size of just over 40Kbytes.

New size

For instructions on uploading images see Forum Help


Enhancing an Image

Most Images of artwork that are produced by a digital camera will benefit from being enhanced to produce an image that is nearer to the original artwork.

Irfanview has basic facilities to enhance an image.

With the image loaded, select auto adjust colours from the image menu. It's better if the image requires cropping, to crop first then do the auto adjust colours.

Usually if the spread of colours is varied, the auto adjust colours will do a good job. If there is a large amount of the same colour in the image you may have to manually adjust as below

With the image loaded, select Enhance colours from the Image menu.
Use the controls to adjust the New Image so that it represents the artwork better than the Original Image. Press OK.

enhance colours screen

Cropping an Image

To Crop an Image to remove unwanted borders:
Use the mouse to drag a line round the portion to be retained and select Crop selection from the Edit menu.