Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Watermarks on Photos

A comment was left in yesterday's post about how to do a watermark on your photo. Here is my method for adding the copyright information to my photos. I use an older version of PhotoShop, so your photo editing software may vary.

First I open my photo in PhotoShop. Next I adjust the photo to the size I want. Size in this case means the pixel dimensions I want my photo to be. I usually choose somewhere around 500 to 700 pixels for the longest side of the photo. This size tends to be a good choice for a photo that is to be shared on the Internet and if you want to share a photo through email. Photos that have really large pixel dimensions can be slow to load on a browser screen or send through an email system. Another bonus to reducing the size of your photos that you share online is that they are much smaller and lower in resolution so if someone does steal the photo, the reproduction quality of it is not very good. Sure they can show the photo online like you are, but printing it onto something won't give good results.

Once I have the photo to the size I want, I then click the text tool. With the text tool selected, click anywhere on your photo and you should then be able to start typing some text. In PhotoShop this step creates a layer above the photo layer, which is nice if you want to adjust or move the text around, it won't affect the photo layer.

Now type your watermark or copyright information. Once you have the text how you like it (such as font style, type size, color) you can then save your photo. In PhotoShop there is a selection labeled "Save for Web". This will automatically save the photo in the correct resolution for web viewing, which is 72 dpi. Oh, and make sure you have saved the original photo before making all these adjustments. Just in case you need it for something other than web viewing or email sending.

And that's all there is to it! So where do you find the copyright symbol? You can find this symbol in the Character Map on your computer. Open the character map and then scroll through to find it. Click on the symbol and then choose copy. When you are in the text entry mode in your photo editing software you can then paste the symbol onto your photo. Your photo editing software might have a special characters section also, you may find it there.

One thing that I have done to speed up the process above is to create a PhotoShop document with the copyright text already typed. Then when I have my photo open, I open my copyright document and then drag it to my photo. This saves retyping it every time.

I hope this helps those of you who are interested in adding copyright or watermark information to your photos that you share online. Sorry it was a no-photo post.