How big should you make your art?

thefrogman:

I’ve noticed some digital artists out there who just kind of guess when choosing the dimensions of their artwork. Trying to understand ppi, dpi, print dimensions, and resolution can send you down a rabbit hole of complexity likely to break your brain.  

If you are creating an image only for the web, it is really up to you how big you want to make it. The only relevant dimensions are the pixels. Print size and pixels per inch are of no consequence. A 1920x1080 300ppi image will be the same as a 1920x1080 600ppi image. Your screen only cares about pixel dimensions.

If you plan to print your image, that is where things can get complicated.

Here is the simple version…

First you need to determine the maximum size that your work may be printed. Here are the most commonly used sizes for poster prints. 

image

Now you need to know the brand of printer that will be used. Typically it will be Epson, HP, or Canon.

For Epson printers…

  • Input the width and height. 
  • Input a resolution of 360 pixels per inch.

For Canon, HP, and most other printers…

  • Input the width and height. 
  • Input a resolution of 300 pixels per inch.

So let’s say you are in photoshop and you want your art to be printed at 11” x 17” on an Epson printer. This is how you should create your document. 

image

If you do not know how your work will be printed, I recommend erring on the side of “too big.” If you end up having to enlarge your work, it could result in some quality loss. 

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hey-how-ya-doing:

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