A Small Primer on Resizing Pictures
using FastStone Image Viewer

This exercise presumes you have FastStone installed on your computer.
If you do not, it can he downloaded HERE. It is a well-designed free image editor and my choice for day to day image work that does not require the sophistication and advanced capability of Photoshop CS5 or the like.

If your image is not as nicely framed as the example used below, you should first take a look at
A Small Primer on Cropping Pictures.

Open FastStone. In the left hand panel, browse to the folder where your image file is stored and select it with a left click

Figure 1

In the main panel, you will see thumbnails of the images in the folder. Double click on the image you wish to open

Figure 2

With the image open, move your cursor to the left side of the screen and the main editing menu will open. Select Resize/Resample by clicking it or using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl +R

Figure 3

In the resize screen make sure Preserve Aspect Ratio is selected [1]. Next, change the pixel width to the recommended 640 [2]; you will notice that the height will change proportionately. Click ok [3].

Figure 4

With your image now resized, you need to save it. Open the editing menu again and select Save As or type Ctrl +S.

Figure 5

Before actually saving the file, you need to set the level of compression to use. Click the Options button

Figure 6

In the File Format Option screen, move the Quality slider to around 50% [1]. As you can see in the before and after pictures, the file size will be a good deal smaller, but the image will remain clear and sharp, provided it was to begin with. If it does look bad, increase the quality level, but only as far as needed. Once adjusted, select OK [2].

Figure 7

Back on the Save As screen, select where you wish to save the file [1], change its name, if need be [2], and click Save [3]

Figure 8

Your image is now ready to upload to Photobucket or whichever site you are using to host your picture.

Final resized image

It is worth noting here that while you can upload your images and edit them directly on several of the image hosting sites, I have found the tools provided quite confusing and the results often more guess work than actual user control. I highly recommend taking a small bit of time learning to do such things for yourself; the effort will repay you well.

If you find FastStone as efficient and easy to use as I do, please consider making a donation to help its developers keep up their excellent work: Support FastStone

23 June 2010
© Wm Erik Voss 2010

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