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Chapter 4. Editing Photos > Uses for specific aspect ratios

Uses for specific aspect ratios

  • Use 1280 x 1024 (Display) before you crop the image for use as a Desktop picture. These numbers are specific to your monitor's resolution.

  • Use 4 x 3 (Book) to crop a portrait image for use in an iPhoto book; 4 x 3 (DVD) gives you a landscape image for a DVD slideshow created with iDVD or for use in an iPhoto book.

  • Use Square when you want a square selection; I've found it useful for making images for use on the Web.

  • Use a custom ratio if some external use, such as a Web page, calls for a specific aspect ratio (Figure 4.17).

    Figure 4.17. For an unusual custom aspect ratio, choose Custom and enter the desired aspect ratio in the Custom Constrain fields in the dialog that appears.

Switching between Portrait and Landscape Orientation

You may often find yourself wanting to switch between the portrait (vertical) and landscape (horizontal) aspect ratios as you crop different photos, and you may also find yourself cursing a specific aspect ratio as you try to select a person's eyes to reduce red-eye. iPhoto has two hidden features to assuage your annoyance.

  • Press while dragging to switch between portrait and landscape. This trick has the same effect as toggling the Constrain As menu item but is much more fluid to use.

  • Press while dragging to switch temporarily to None so you can more easily select eyes for red-eye reduction.

✓ Tips

  • iPhoto assumes you want to crop in the same orientation as the photo, but you can change that. For instance, to create a portrait orientation selection in a landscape image, choose Constrain as Portrait or press while dragging.

  • iPhoto has some duplicate aspect ratios, presumably for people who don't realize that aspect ratios are ratios between numbers and multiplying those numbers by some value doesn't change the ratio. For instance, 2 x 3 and 20 x 30 give you identical results.

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