Formats and sizes for printing photographs

Main dimensions

10×15. The most popular photo size is, of course,

10×15 cm. Fine

size – 102mm x 152mm. In different laboratories it can vary from 98-102mm to

width and 148-152mm in length. It depends on the setting of the printing machine and

the photo paper you are using.


We come across the term “format” when printing photographs. Of course, they can be printed in any size and with any aspect ratio. For example, you can stretch or compress it yourself in Word and print such an image. But will this printout look high quality or even adequate?

To avoid ambiguities and inaccuracies, standard parameters are now used to determine how to work with images. The aspect ratio in most cases is the same for matrices of modern cameras, photo frames and photo album pages (2:3, 3:4, etc.)

That’s it

Today we looked at the main photo formats for printing and found out that it is very important to take into account the linear parameters of the image before printing. I wish everyone bright and joyful moments that you want to save in the good old way – in the form of a printed photograph.

It’s great to have photos, especially when they were taken by a professional photographer. Do you print pictures or prefer electronic media and cloud storage?

Write in the comments, it’s very interesting to know your opinion about printing photos. Maybe you have some questions? By the way, if you don’t know where to get cool photos for free, I can tell you! And that’s all for today, have warm days this summer!

Ivan was with you.

Ready-made templates

1. Save the picture with the desired size: left-click on the picture – click save image/picture.

2. Open the downloaded image in any photo editor (for example, Photoshop or Paint) and paste your photo on top.

3. Done! Can be printed.


Inconvenient to handle and store.

20×30. Old format ideal for printing with

large photographic films

fingerprints. Often used for portraits along with the 21×30 format.

Non-standard photo formats for printing

There is a group of non-standard formats, for example square, which are becoming increasingly in demand today, due to the popularity of the social network social network. The most prominent example is images taken with Instax instant cameras.

Фотографии квадратного формата


  • Ideal for artistic photos. Basic format for training in

    photography schools. Allows you to see all the shortcomings and errors when shooting;

  • This format is well suited for hanging a photo on the wall, so

    how well we can see it from a distance of up to three meters;

  • Suitable for frames, folders, A4 size “files”.


Ideal for printing artistic photographs from film.

Photo size in inches

Standard Size in inches
9×13 3,543 x 5,117
10×15 3,937 x 5,907
13×18 5,117 x 7,087
15×20 5,907 x 7,873
15×21 5,907 x 8,267
15×22 5.907 x 8.66
15×30 5.907 x 11.81
15×38 5.907 x 14.96
15×45 5,907 x 17,717
18×24 7.087 x 9.45
18×25 7,087 x 9,843
20×25 7,873 x 9,843
20×30 7.873 x 11.81
25×38 9.843 x 14.96
30×40 11.81 x 15.747
30×45 11.81 x 17.717
30×90 11.81 x 35.433

Photo sizes for documents

  • Standard sizes are established for photos for Russian passports and other documents. They are also subject to a number of other requirements.
  • For a Russian passport: 3.5×4.5 cm. People often encounter a problem when their photo is not accepted at the passport office. This often happens because many people bring 3×4 cm photos “for old times’ sake.” Now this is no longer relevant.
  • For a foreign passport: 3.5×4.5 cm
  • A 3×4 cm photo is required for a medical book, student ID, pension certificate, temporary registration, grade book, pass, certificate, military ID
  • For Schengen visa 3.5×4.5 mm

Also for document photos, the color, size of the head and margins above it, the presence/absence of a corner, requirements for the background and paper texture are set. All these aspects are clarified by the organizations receiving the documents.

Photo sizes

When collecting various documents, everyone took that same “three by four” photograph. Let’s look at examples of what a photo format is, what it depends on and what it affects.

When preparing a photo for release, its resolution should be taken into account. It depends on the number of pixels that make up the image. For printing, the resolution is usually 320 pdi. But we’ll talk about this another time.

A pixel is the smallest two-dimensional element of a digital image. Pixels are squares or, less commonly, rectangles.

From them, like from honeycombs, digital pictures and photographs are built. The more pixels an image contains, the higher its resolution. A photo with a low resolution (low number of pixels) can be printed as large as you like, but its quality will be lost as the size increases.

Therefore, when preparing to print a large photograph, it is important to consider its resolution so as not to end up with a “pixelated”, difficult to read picture (see example below). We take a photograph; in miniature it seems to be of good quality.

Форматы фотографий размеры1

We stretch it – it doesn’t look very good anymore. This image is not suitable for an advertising banner or large poster. You can’t even print it out into an album because its resolution is low.

Next, it is important to determine the linear “dimensions”. The format of the photograph that will be printed depends on them. It represents the numerical value of the width and height of a physical image on paper.

Most photo editors and graphics programs allow you to set the file size in pixels, millimeters, centimeters, etc. The resolution is also indicated there.

Free size

Modern digital printing machines are not limited to the set indicated

formats and can print any size from 10x10mm to 305x450mm. But for printing

non-standard sizes, you must separately contact the laboratory operator and

discuss the terms.

Special sizes

9×12, 13×18. Formats that were once popular are now all available

less often. What is it with

connected is difficult to say. No advantages over their counterparts 10×15 and 15×20

they do not have. But they have a drawback – smaller size.

11.5×15, 15×22.5. Special formats. Appeared due to various things

ratios for different

cameras: 3 to 4 or 2 to 3. At the beginning of the era of digital cameras, the aspect ratio of the “digital”

it was exclusively 3 to 4.

Exact dimensions in cm and pixels for photo printing in digital photo labs. – holiday photography and computer photo processing in Adobe Photoshop – poems, articles on holiday, greeting and wedding themes – photo services, slide shows, presentations, videos.

When printing photographs in digital darkrooms, proper preparation of photographs for printing in accordance with standard print formats is of great importance.

Table of exact dimensions in cm and pixels for standard photo printing formats in digital photo laboratories or minilabs.

Exact size in file
Size in pixels


Files for all print sizes must be prepared at 300 dpi. Photos /images/ are accepted in RGB mode, in *.tiff (uncompressed), *.jpeg, *.bmp, *.gif formats; 8 bit/channel.

When printing digital files, the following printing options are available:

Fill – a part is cut out of a photograph (image) in accordance with the proportions, with the possible loss of the top and bottom parts of the photograph (image) on the larger side.

Fit – the photograph (image) is imprinted into the format, with white margins possibly appearing on the left and right (on the short side).

No resize – the photograph (image) is printed “pixel by pixel” relative to the center. If the photograph (image) is prepared according to the table above, then the entire photograph will be printed on paper.

Color corrections when printing files.

sRGB mode – the image is converted to this space and color and density correction is automatically made.

No Convert mode – the image is not subject to any processing. This mode is recommended to be used if the monitor is calibrated and the required color profile is used.