Avoiding Blurry or Out of Focus Prints

Have you ever wondered how this happens? Especially if the image on your screen appears sharp and clear.  Its a problem can artists face with reproductions and can also occur with photographers, especially when they are making larger format prints.

It is important to understand the problem is not with the printers. Printers do not have focus controls like a cameras does. They simply print the digital image sent to them. So what is the problem? The problem lies with the image file. Many times people fail to “study” their image file up close. The best way to go about this is open your file in a program that lets you really study the image. You will likely want to do this on a desktop or other device that has a large screen and one in which you can get a sense of scale that you are viewing the image at.  An application such as Adobe Photoshop is ideal to expand your image so that you can thoroughly check for deficiencies. This is especially important when ordering large sized prints.

In most cases, the problem occurs when artwork is photographed. The first thing to check is the lens of your camera. An unfocused lens can be easily corrected. If you are using a manual focus, try the auto focus instead or try various shots with minor adjustments. On the other hand if you are using auto-focus, try manual. It could be the auto-focus is slightly off.

Again remember, when you enlarge an image slightly out of focus shots are amplified so it could be your auto–focus is not working as proficiently as it should. In that case, and assuming you have the ability to do so, switch to manual focus and test some shots that way. On rare occasions, the problem lies with the lens itself which means you will have to take your camera or lens (if detachable) in for service. Most often, however, the cause is camera shake. This is something difficult to avoid without a tripod. Even on a tripod, the very act of pressing a button to snap a picture can shake a camera sufficiently enough to produce an out of focus image. This is why most artists opt on using the timer-mode to capture their image ‘hands-free’.

These tips should improve the quality of the image being submitted. In summary, make sure you review your image by zooming in and if the image appears out of focus, follow some of the above tips to improve the focus of your shot.

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