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Web vs. Print Resolution

Once upon a noonday heated...Once upon a noonday heated, I drew at my table, seated, having many a dream of making comics no one's seen before;
Screen vs. Print - 03Photoshop -- this software, raster-- lets me make these comics faster, but there was one small disaster, one detail I did ignore:
Resolution. Nothing More."Not important", I thought, of this one detail I did ignore: Resolution. Nothing more.
People asking if I've printed books or artwork they could buy.Came the day my dreams had hinted, mild success-- lunch money, minted-- people asking if I've printed books or artwork they could buy.
But I found my sad self squinting...Eagerly, I took to printing all my comics, gold and glinting, but I found my sad self squinting at a mess of blurry lines.
"You printed it so blurry. Why?""What is wrong, you damned machine? You printed it so blurry. Why?" Quoth the printer, "DPI".
If you print web resolution....If you print web resolution, what comes out will cause confusion-- doctors HATE this one solution: draw at 300 DPI, or more.
300+ DPI for print."Dots per inch": what DPI means; 72 is default for screens; 300+ for print machines-- I've seen guys use 600 or more.
Printing issues: Nevermore.Always check your resolution! Now, you know what to look for. Printing issues: Nevermore.

Terminology

In regards to web vs. print resolution, one important thing you need to consider is the term PPI, or Pixels per Inch. People (including myself) tend to use the term interchangeably with DPI, or Dots per Inch. If you were to walk into a print shop right now and start throwing those words around, they will know what you’re talking about.

Technically speaking, however, DPI refers to the amount of ink (dots) your printer can fit onto an inch of paper. This number is usually a set range specific to each machine, and generally can’t be changed by the end-user. PPI, on the other hand, can refer to a couple of things. For example: computer monitors commonly have pixel densities that range between 72 to 96 PPI. High-density screens, like those found on retina iPhones, can go upwards of 400. In the context of this article, we’re discussing printing, so in this case PPI refers to the number of pixels that fit on an inch of paper. Any time you’re adjusting an image to be print-ready on your computer, you’re changing the PPI.

In all cases, though, a higher DPI or PPI always results in a crisper, higher quality image, and 300 PPI is the de facto standard for printing something to size. For those who wish to read more on the subject, check out this article at 99Designs, and this article at Digicam Guides.



3 Comments

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    Danyellerz92 Peculiar Nonsense 2 years ago

    I’m learning a ton!! This didn’t feel like a lecture at all. I had fun reading and really appreciate you guys taking the time to help out those that really want to create art, but don’t quite get the technicalities of it; like me! Thanks.

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    nox.fox 2 years ago

    That’s a great tutorial and I really, really dig this revamp of The Raven! You rock!