We have two schools of thought for creating backgrounds. The first (and our recommended method), is the 'one size fits most' method. With that method, you create one preview template, and then as you print, the background has a bi-cubic crop to the center where we crop the image to fit the print canvas. The second approach is the 'multiple sizes for more detail' method. With this methodology, you create more backgrounds, but allows you to be more precise in desigining a background specific to anticipated print size.
The one size fits most approach is to you place your background image on your preview template. If you place the background on the preview template, you would create your background sized based on your largest anticipated print size.
For instace, we may create an 8x10 preview template because we anticipate our largest print size not exceeding 8 inches X 10 inches. This allows us to print to print templates up to 8x10 where the image will be cropped to match the preview template.
The multiple sizes for more detail approach is to create individual backgrounds based upon your intended final print size template. For instance, if you intend to print to a 5x7 (portrait) photograph, you would want to create your background to match the same aspect ratio (plus) room for bleed. Should you wish to print to an 8x10 (portrait) you would want to create an 8" wide x 10" tall canvas (plus applicable printer 'bleed').
With this method, you would create more background graphics; however, your anticipated crop could be more exact. The advantage to this method would be if you wanted less detail on smalaler sizes, or have writing you intend to place on the background; that information would remain.
The most important thing to consider when placing a logo on your image, is the resolution of your logo. We recommend your resolution (DPI) should match your print resolution. (Usually 300 DPI for most Thermal Dye Sublimation printers - learn more below). You will be able to place your logo on your preview or print template where ever you would like when you create your template.
Our recommended file format for logo images is PNG. Transparent PNG files allow you to place logos on your images and have them sized to fit.FULL PAGE OVERLAYS
A full page overlay is an overlay meant to cover your entire image and should stretch top to bottom and left to right of the image area. When designing full page overlays, it's important that you create your overlay with bleed (mentioned below with background). If you have important words or text on your overlay, you should make sure the words or text is sufficiently away from the edges so that the text is not cropped when printing.
We would recommend PNG files with transparency where you want your customer photos to fit in the middle.
It's important to leave extra room for photo so that the printer can print full 'bleed.' For many printers, we recommending an extra tenth of an inch to the printable region. For instance, for a 5x7 print going to a DNP printer, we would make the template (and subsequent background images or full page foreground images) 5.1" wide x 7.1" tall. The margins of the print will be cropped, but this allows your image to print edge to edge.
5 x 7 aspect ratio (portrait) 7" x 5" aspect ratio (landscape)
PORTRAIT 5" wide x 7" tall LANDSCPAE 7" wide x 5" tallAdd Room for bleed
PORTRAIT 5.1" wide x 7.1" tall LANDSCPAE 7.1" wide x 5.1" tall
Resolution is based on your intended printers final print resolution. Most thermal dye sublimation printers (like DNP) use 300x300 DPI. When working in pixels with your software of choice, you would take your print size (including bleed) and multiply by the DPI of your printer.
Many popular image editors allow you to work in both pixels and inches; however, some softwares only work in pixels. To convert inches to pixels, multiply your image size by your anticipated DPI.
PORTRAIT 5.1" wide x 7.1" tall LANDSCAPE 7.1" wide x 5.1" tall
5.1" x 300 = 1,530 pixels
7.1" x 300 = 2,130 pixelsFinal Photo Size (in pixels) with bleed:
PORTRAIT 1,530 pixels x 2,130 pixels LANDSCPAE 2,130 pixels x 1,530 pixels