by: Ruth McIntyre-Williams
downloaded buttons and horizontal lines and other good
stuff from the web - but - it's not all exactly what you want.
Besides, you have some photos that would spruce up the site, and
you want to feel as if some part of the graphics were your own.
You can do it. Gather your photos. Draw a palm tree in your
paint program. Put them on the web.
is not a comprehensive graphics course. We're talking
basic, simple - words you want to hear. Two of these words are
acronyms: jpg and gif. What they mean, you don't care. Just
Use jpg when your graphic is a photograph or like a
photograph. b. Use gif for everything else.
Easy, huh? Onward!
check out your scanner software. Read the manual or
up your scanner software and start pushing buttons. Somewhere,
you should be able to choose the gif or jpg file format to save
your scan in. It could be under "Save As" or "Export," or it
could be in the box where you set up the parameters before you
scan. Experiment. Learn how to create the file format you want
before you go on.
going to start with jpg and photos. Computer monitors
show at a resolution of 72. So find out where you set the
scanning resolution, and put it at 72. If you print out your 72
scan, it will be terrible, so don't print it. On the web, it
will be beautiful. Trust me.
check your photo size. A two inch by three inch photo
web page is big! Shrink your photo either when or after you scan
it. You'll have to experiment with what size you'll want on your
scanned your photo at 72, and got it to the size you
want. You must now "Save As" or "Export" it as a jpg. You will
probably have the option of choosing "high," "medium," or "low"
quality for your jpg. If at all possible, save it as "low." If
numbers are given, try "3." . Use the lowest quality or lowest
number that you can and still have an acceptable photo. Which
brings us to an axiom of web graphics design:
graphics files mean faster loading when a viewer opens
your page. If the loading takes too long, the viewer will not
stay, much less buy something. Smaller graphics files means a
smaller storage needs for your page, important when you are
allotted limited server space. Sometimes web browsers balk at
loading huge graphics. Keep it small. Avoid headaches.
on to gif files. Gif is used for graphics that have
of flat color, like the palm tree you made in your paint
program. Read the manual, and check out your paint program. You
might have a paint program from which you can save or export gif
your paint program won't export the art work as gif,
problem. Print your art work out at a high resolution on good
paper and scan it at 72, size it, and save or export it as gif
89a. If your software just says "gif," I think you can safely
assume it is gif89a unless your software is very old.
is one important distinction between gif and jpg. In
you must be sure that your photo fills the picture window after
you scan. If there is white space around or on any side of the
photo, crop it off, or it will show up on the web. But in
gif89a, the background of your picture will be transparent. So,
if you scan your palm tree on its white background and save it
as gif, what will appear on the web is just the palm tree. jpg
would show a palm tree on a white rectangle.
saving or exporting in jpg, you had a choice of quality
for your finished product. In gif, you have no quality choice,
but you may have a choice of the number of colors to be used.
The fewer the colors, the smaller the file. So again, experiment
with saving or exporting your artwork with different numbers of
colors until your arrive at a satisfactory graphic with as few
colors as possible.
jpg is for graphics that are photographs or like photographs.
2. gif is for everything else. 3. All graphics should be created
in the smallest possible file size.
Got it? Go create!
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