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Photoshop Elements 6: The Missing Manual by Barbara Brundage

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Cropping Pictures

Whether or not you straightened your digital photo, sooner or later you'll probably need to crop it—trim it to a certain size. Most people crop their photos for one of two reasons: If you want to print on standard size photo paper, you usually need to cut away part of your image to make it fit on the paper. Then there's the "I don't want that in my picture" reason. Fortunately, Elements makes it easy to crop away distracting background objects or people you'd rather not see.

A few cameras produce photos that are proportioned exactly right for printing to a standard size like 4" x 6". But most cameras give you photos that aren't the same proportions as any of the standard paper sizes like 4" x 6" or 8" x 10". (The width-to-height ratio is also known as the aspect ratio.)

The extra area most cameras provide gives you room to crop wherever you like. You can also crop out different areas for different size prints (assuming you save your original photo). Figure 3-7 shows an example of a photo that had to be cropped to fit on a 4" x 6" piece of paper. If you'd like to experiment with cropping or changing resolution (explained on Changing the Size of Your Image), download the image in the figure (waterfall.jpg) from the "Missing CD" page at www.missingmanuals.com

When you print onto standard sized paper, you may have to choose the part of your digital photo you want to keep.Left: The photo as it came from the camera.Right: The results of cropping the image to make it the correct shape for a 4" x 6" print.

Figure 3-7. When you print onto standard sized paper, you may have to choose the part of your digital photo you ...

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