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Shrink photos for e-mail or the Web

Whenever you e-mail a photo or post in on the Internet, you’ll want to reduce the file size because large digital images take a long time to view/download online in a browser. To reduce file size, you need to change the number of pixels in the image. This can be done in many free and easy image editing programs, including Paint Shop Pro, Photoshop Elements (shown below), and even Microsoft Office Picture Manager (available with Office 2003 and 2007).

Here’s how to do it:

First crop the image the way you want it. A width of 700 is a good target for e-mailing. Then use your software’s zoom tool to make it appear the size you want on the screen—maybe you prefer a small thumbnail, or maybe you want to fill the monitor. Either way, take note of the percentage size of the image. Then use your software’s “image size” tool to reduce it in pixels to that percentage. Important: Do not save over the original file. Save it in a “Web+email photos” folder designated for this purpose.

Reduce the number of pixels in a photo before e-mailing or posting it online.

Now you’ve created a much smaller file because you’ve reduced the number of pixels in the image. It won’t be as good for printing, but it’s much better for e-mailing or putting on the Web.

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