Creating an E-mail File

E-mail files are generally created to send a file so that it can be viewed on a computer screen. These images should be small enough so that they can be viewed on a typical computer but still large enough to show sufficient detail. Also, most E-mail systems have a limit on the size of attachment of about 1-2 MB; this limits the size and number of files that can be sent.

1 Duplicate your image file (this preserves the layers and color space of the image file). Select Image>Duplicate Image. In the Duplicate Image dialog, provide a useful name and check the "Duplicate Merged Layers Only" option.

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2 If necessary convert the E-mail image to sRGB using Edit>Convert to Profile. See Convert to sRGB on page 107.

3 Resize your image; select Image>Image Size. In the image size dialog, set the resolution to 72 pixels per inch and set the Pixel Dimensions to your specific desired pixel size by changing the Width or Height. For a typical E-mail image, set the longest dimension to 500-800 pixels.

4 Sharpen the image by selecting Filter>Sharpen>Smart Sharpen. Set the Amount to 50%, the Radius to 1 pixel, Remove to "Lens Blur" and check the More Accurate option. Use a Radius of 1 pixel for web images. Sharpen smaller image files less - too much sharpening can make small files appear blocky.

5 Save the Image to the Web by Selecting File>Save for Web. In the Save for Web dialog set the File Settings; set the file format to "JPEG", the quality to "High", turn off Progressive and turn on ICC Profile. The File Information will display the file format and file size, a file size under 100 K is good for E-mail files.

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Press the Save button and Photoshop will provide you a Save As dialog to save the file.

6 It is possible to resize an image in the Save for Web dialog directly rather than doing this using the Image Size dialog in step 3 above. Select the Image Size tab in the Save for Web dialog and provide size dimensions as you would using the Image Size dialog. I prefer to resize my E-mail images first, then sharpen, and then save the Jpeg files.

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