Each image has a unique shape- this is called aspect ratio. The aspect ratio of an image is the relation of its' width to height. For example, your HDTV at home most likely has a 16:9 aspect ratio- for every 16 inches of width we gain 9 inches of height thus creating the widescreen format/ display. Most cameras these days take images in a 2:3 aspect ratio.
How to find the Aspect Ratio of an Image
First, you want to find the pixel dimensions of the image you are using. Click this link to our guide on Locating Image File Specs/ Pixel Dimensions.
Once you locate the Pixel Dimensions you want to divide the long side by the short side and make note of this resulting number.
Example: Image A measures 4000 x 6000 pixels. 6000 divided by 4000 equals 1.5. This is the aspect ratio-by referring to the chart below we can see this image has an aspect ratio of 2:3 (common form). Print Sizes in this shape (listed below in blue) will offer the closest full frame crop.
*A downloadable copy of this chart is available at the bottom of this article.
Q: What if I divide my pixel dimensions (long side divided by short side) and cannot find that number on this chart?
A: If your resulting number cannot be found on this chart it is of an unconventional shape and will experience cropping/ image loss.
Q: Can I change the shape of the image to fit a common/ different print shape?
A: We strongly advise against doing this as the image will appear skewed/distorted.
Q: If I cannot change the shape, what is the best course of action?
A: If the image in question is cropped from an original image, simply revisiting and re-cropping from the original image file is the best method to pursue.
Q: I have the image shape and know the pixel dimensions- what do I do with them?
A: Check out the article "Determining the Best Print Size- How large can I go?" for a helpful look at deciding your print size.