Advanced technique for creating Diptic "photo tiles"

I like to use Apple Aperture to prepare ready-made “photo tiles” that are the perfect size to add to the panels in a Diptic layout. That said, some photos can’t be cropped to a size of say 1024 x 1024 pixels square without losing critical parts of the photo. Here’s a solution that is both simple and elegant — it’s called “round-tripping.”

I set Aperture’s “Export” preferences to hand-off a copy of an image file to an extrnal photo editor. I’m using Adobe Photoshop, but a much less expensive application such as ImageWell works too. I selected an image in my Aperture Library (see Photo 1 of 3, below), chose the Crop tool and “Square” Aspect Ratio, and selected an area that is 1723 x 1723 pixels square (see Photo 2 of 3, below). From the Aperture menu bar, I selected Photos > Edit with Adobe Photoshop…; Photoshop opened and I changed the image size to 1024 x 1024 pixels square. From the Photoshop menu bar, I selected File > Save; voila, the re-sized image appeared in my Aperture Library (round-trip completed)! Finally, I exported the re-sized photo from Aperture as usual (see Photo 3 of 3, below). Now the photo tile is ready for use in a Diptic diptych. Simple, huh? Really, it’s simpler than it sounds and best of all, there’s none of the loss in image quality that would occur by opening/editing/saving a photo in two-or-more applications. Now that’s cool!


Tech Tips: When cropping a selected area from a photo that will be re-sized, be sure the dimensions of the selected area are larger than the intended dimensions of the re-sized version. Otherwise you may see “jaggies” in the final image.

Photos © Copyright 2011 Walter Sanford. All rights reserved.

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