How to buy from artist C Ribet | Crop or Position Images for Printing | Fine Art Papers

Fine Art Prints print on a sheet of paper larger than the printed image dimensions.
For example, if you order an 8x10 Fine Art Print and the image exactly fills the 8x10 positioning area in the configuration tool, you will receive a print on a sheet of paper larger than 8x10. This is true for all Fine Art Prints because of the nature of the print process and to allow for proper framing and matting of the Fine Art Print. You may wish to specifically configure the image to add extra white space around the image for Fine Art Prints. The examples and discussions here show this method.


It took me a while to understand the way the Zenfolio system works for positioning the photographic image on the paper during the order process for a print (the configuration dialog screen is used to adjust image position for any print process, Canvas Gallery Wrap, Fine Art Print, etc.). At first it seemed that there were no sizes that matched many of my images. I was worried, but once I figured out the system I saw there was not a problem. Here is an explanation and a few examples of the process of selecting an image and configuring the image for printing on a selected paper size.

When I first started out doing my own printing, framing and matting, I tried very hard to standardize my final print sizes and image aspect ratios to fit what were the most common sizes of prints, mats and frames. This kept costs low and made a lot of thing simpler than otherwise. It worked well when I was primarily doing Caliifornia Landscapes and even the mushroom and fungus photography, because most all of those photographs I could frame very well in the viewfinder of the SLR (as I learned photography back in the days of film). It all just worked out, because photograph aspect ratios for full frame film negatives effectively defined the 'standard' photo aspect ratio and hence the mat window dimensions with the framing following on in turn.


That was all well and good for a long time,, and I continued to work this way initially when I started to do more abstract work in the dewscapes / mizzlescapes genre I was inventing. However, as I started to create more abstract and unconventional photographs,.eventually I felt very stifled to be forcing my ideas into the bounds of the standard 8x10, 11x14 and 6x9 dimensions that I had used previously. As I was doing all my own printing, matting and framing, while it was more labor intensive and cost more, it was possible to ignore those restraints. So I did. I have been very happy since then.

The result however, is that this makes it a little less than obvious sometimes how to use the Zenfolio configuration tool for arranging any given image on a virtual piece of paper so the printer knows how to print it.

The following examples help to explain the work around this apparent problem. In hindsight, it seems more obvious to me now, but at first this was not clear at all how to use the drag and drop and sizing rectangles to make things work!

I hope these examples save you time in figuring it out yourself.

How to buy from artist C Ribet | Example | Wide Images

This example works with a horizontally wide and vertically short image that is in approximately a 1:2 (H:V) aspect ratio - but NIOT exactly 1:2 and not close to 1:3. I want to ensure that I do not crop the image at all and see the entire image on the paper. I want to create a Fine Art Paper print suitable for me to frame myself (or give to a brick and mortar frameshop).

I choose one of the Planetary Alien Spaces of the Dewscapes / Mizzlescapes genre. It is between 1:2 and 1:3 in aspect ratio. This image, as many others of this series of planetary images, has very non- standard dimensions. If I had cropped the original full frame image otherwise however, it would not have been acceptable to me, so the result is this non-standard format. We need to work around that. I click on in Featured Products the 12x24 Fine Art Print option on the image details page:

The resulting screen is worth showing, because Zenfolio for reasons I do not understand sometimes shows this intermediate screen instead skipping right to the configuration screen. Hmmm... I need to click on 'Fine Art Prints' even though I already clicked on the 12x14 Fine Art Print product. Hmmm...

Crop Example Dewscape A 2

So, clicking on 'Fine Art Prints' gets me to this page:

Crop Example Dewscape A 3

This is the page whre I want to be, as it gives me the link to 'Preview and Configure' (I seem to have lots of things in my cart too). I click on the Preview and Configure link. I will always want to do this even to just verify that things are OK as guessed by the computer system for all prints I am ordering. This gives me the following screen:

How to buy from artist C Ribet | Example | Tall Images

This is very similar to the example of working on a short and wide image which is in between even the quasi-standard 1;3 and 1:2 aspect ratios. Once again, it comes as no surprise that it is one of the Plantary Alien Space dewscapes which lend themselves to these kinds of usual dimensions to capture the spirit of the image.

It is worth running through the example, because it shows some quirks of the Zenfolio gallery system where sometimes intermediate dialog pages come up unexpectedly and to apparently no purpose (as in the short and wide example previously).

We start with the image detail page for the alien spectacle:

We then select the best match for the Fine Art Paper print type from the Featured Products list at the bottom right and a size we like which in this case is 24x36 inches. This time, for whatever reason, the Zenfolio system pops up directly with the 'Add to Cart' screen without the intermediate screen in the previous example (which seemed to have no purpose in that example).

To get to the configuration scree we hit the 'Add to Cart' button:

Crop Example Dewscape B 2

You can see in this screen capture that we are now at the page where we can do the 'Preview and Configure' process. We've also in all these examples now got a lot of things in our cart. We don't care! It is just a few clicks to get rid of anything in the cart and there is no 'one click, oops did I buy that' button to worry about. There is no way you can 'accidentally' but anything. We just keep sticking things in the cart as we do the 'Preview and Configure' options for them without worrying.

© C Ribet 2013