Understanding the Photography of Artwork & Media Submission

During the book layout process; images submitted are utilized in small and large layouts. Artwork submitted that does not have adequate DPI (dots per inch) and size cannot be utilized as desired. It is important when submitting artwork & photographs to us that it be the largest size possible. This page is to serve as a guide to artist or photographers with a desire to submit artwork. We always recommend to hire a professional photographer if you are unsure about the information below. Muddy and unsharp images will be rejected for publication. Please do not submit images taken with an iphone or camera phone as your work is more deserving of such replication.

Uploading and File Protection

We have successfully been producing books for over three years. During that time we have been handling print quality digital files of some of the most famous artist of our time. Our number one priority when receiving artwork files is the protection and integrity of the artist’s work. Image files received will only be used for the intended specific purpose & promotion of publication. A non-disclosure agreement can be made available upon request.

We recommend dropbox or hightail for submitting large files.

File Naming

It is important that all files submitted have the following structure. (artistname_paintingtitle) All artwork used in our publications contain a credit line for the artist and the name of the painting. Correct filenames will insure we have the correct spelling & name.

File Size

Regarding file size; it is not always safe to go by how big one particular file is in size. File types such as JPEG utilize compression; depending on how the file was saved it could be a variety of sizes. The most important size constraint is how many inches wide and tall an image can be utilized at a 300 dpi (dots per inch) scale. Our publications utilize sizes from 3in by 3in up to 14in tall by 24in wide. The only way to know exactly how your images scale is to utilize a photo program that allows you to see this information. I recommend if you are creating your own images to utilize a program called Photoshop Elements. It is a more affordable solution then the full scale Photoshop program used by professionals. NOTE: If you are available to email several images at once then you are over-compressing the images. (File sizes should be 5 megabytes or more).

Click here for more information on photoshop elements.

Oyster Man, oil on canvas by Michael Harrell.

Photographing Artwork

Often except-able results can be made by shooting artwork outdoors on a cloudy day. Be sure to utilize the highest quality settings on your camera (JPEG FINE / RAW).

Our advice when in doubt is to hire a professional. Photographing artwork for reproduction with offset printing is entirely different from other kinds of photography. Precision is the most important aspect. Precision is required in:

• Placement of the camera in relation to the artwork

• Placement of lights in relation to the camera and artwork

• Use of the camera to achieve the correct focus and exposure

Why does it matter that you shoot your artwork correctly? Because reproduction with offset printing is inherently an act of translation. There are inherent compromises at each step that may be perceived as a loss of quality.

Some problems that arise include:

• Color shifts

• Uneven lighting

• Distortion of the picture plane

• Specular highlights (gleams)