11 Dec 06
23 Jun 07 3:16 am
Assuming your picture is from a digital camera - the photos are nearly always much larger than the size we view them at and contain lots more information than our screens can show. The process of reducing the amount of data without detracting from the images appearance is referred to as "Optimizing". There are two basic methods of doing this:
1. Resize the image. Most graphics software has a resize function. Open up the image and resize it, this is not the same as a zoom function. This actually compresses the image into a smaller area (zoom just alters your view, not the actual image itself). Now save the resized image as a JPEG or JPG file. This file format will save the image in the least number of colours and pixels to give that same image when reloaded. (For simpler images like logos that require less tonal graduations - use GIF format - it cuts down on the colour graduations to produce a smaller file again).
2. Image Compression - this is a separate function that alters the algorithms used to store the picture data in a file. Top end Graphics software has a separate function for this - usually an option called Optimise. This is either accessable from the Image commands (Ulead or Adobe)or as an one of the Options in the file save process (eg Paintshop Pro).
The Gimp that was suggested is a "Top End" graphics program - don't be fooled that it's free - it has ALL the bell and whistles of Adobe (for a very good reason - but that's another story)