How to Resize an Image in Photoshop

How to Resize an Image in Photoshop

In Photoshop Tutorials by Stefano CaioniLeave a Comment

While there are several tools that can help you with resizing and restructuring your images, using Photoshop to resize an image is perhaps one of your best options. This is probably the most used function in the software, even amongst casual users of Photoshop.

How to Resize an Image in Photoshop

Let’s explore how to do precisely that in this article.

Related: How to Crop an Image in Photoshop

How to Resize an Image in Photoshop Step-by-Step

Open Your Image

Step 1: Navigate to the menu bar at the top in Adobe Photoshop, and go to File > Open. Choose the image that you want from your computer and then click on Open.

Step 2: A new Photoshop file will be created where you can begin to edit your image.

Step 3: You may find yourself requiring a  layer using the image, as an extra step. You can do this by going to the Layers Panel and double-clicking on the ‘Background’ layer. This will open the New Layer window, from which you can rename the layer to something appropriate and then click Ok. 

How to Resize an Image in Photoshop

Step 1: Navigate to the top menu bar and click on Image > Image Size.

Step 2: This will result in a new window opening up, which will show you the current image size. If you want to make sure that the image will retain its proportions when scaling, then you will have to click on the chain icon.

Step 3: Choose the unit of measurement that you desire for the resizing. This can be done from the drop-down menu.

Step 4: Choose the resolution that you wish to use for the new image. 72 PPI will give you a miniature file size. If you’re looking to print, you will need to use 300 PPI, which creates a pretty large image. Once you have decided on the resolution, you can go ahead and click on Ok to finish the resizing.

Related: How to Use Photoshop Actions

Resize and Image Quality

While resizing images is quite simple, it is important to be aware of a few things with regard to maintaining the quality of the image. Typically, you won’t find any problems when you make an image smaller than what it previously was. However, you may run into problems if you’re trying to enlarge the image. Whenever you make an image larger, you will find that the image stops looking that great. You’ll notice that it looks blurry and soft, and has lost several details. The more you enlarge the image, the worse it’s going to get. This is because when you make an image smaller in Photoshop, it happens by basically getting rid of some pixels.

It turns out that the software is excellent at figuring out which of the pixels need to be removed, and which of them need to be retained such that the image quality is not hampered. This results in smaller images still looking good. However, when we try to make an image larger, we begin to face problems. If Photoshop removes pixels to make an image smaller, then it must add pixels to the image to make it larger. The software doesn’t know what the original scene was, and therefore doesn’t know where to get these extra pixels from. It just creates them on its own, using generative algorithms, in an attempt to make it look passably good.

Photoshop is a powerful software that uses complex algorithms to determine which guesses are the best, but in the end, it’s still not perfect by a large margin. So, the larger you try to make your image, the more the tool has to guess, so the quality of the image keeps dropping. You’ll get a dull, hazy, and soft image instead of a crisp and detailed version that you hoped you’d get. So, it is recommended that you never enlarge your image, unless you’re fine with having a poor quality image.

Final Thoughts

Resizing an image is one of the most fundamental operations you can perform in Adobe Photoshop and is extremely popular. We hope that this article has removed any confusion that you might have had, and you are now confident to go and try it out on your own.

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