Creating large format, high quality files for printing iPhone art
Ever wondered what your finger paintings would look like at 3 feet/1 meter high? This little guide will show you how to download the source file of your Brushes paintings, open them with the Brushes viewer, and save them out at high quality suitable for printing.
Before starting, I highly recommend downloading the Brushes User guide and reading from page 26 on. It covers everything we’ll be going over in steps 1 and 2 of this tutorial.
Step 1: Getting the source file
To download the source file of your painting(s), you’re going to need the following:
- Your iPhone/iPod Touch
- Brushes 1.1 or newer
- A computer with web browser
- A Wi-Fi connection
The first thing you want to do is launch Brushes and make sure you’re looking at the Gallery of all your paintings. In the lower left corner is the button for the Connect Panel which let’s you share your gallery with other computers on the same Wi-Fi network (see figure 1). Tap this to launch Brushes web server.
Once the connect panel is open, the web server will be running. Other computers on the same network can connect to your Brushes gallery at the url address displayed ont the connect panel (see figure 2). If you’re having problems, check page 26 of the Brushes User guide.
Using a computer, open a web browser and type in the address shown on the connect panel. Once connected you should see the online gallery of all your paintings (see figure 3)!
Below the thumbnail of each painting will be links for downloading a png file, and for any painting created after the 1.1 update, a Brushes file. The Brushes file is the source file that you will want to download and save to your computer (see figure 4).
Step 2: Exporting a High Resolution copy
To export a high quality file of your painting you will need the following:
Once you have the Brushes Viewer installed, open the .brushes file. There are options for image export and movies, we’re only going to look at image exporting for this tutorial. Check the Brushes User guide for details on everyting you can do with the Brushes Viewer
Next, click the Export Image button in the toolbar.
The Export Image Dialog box will display. Change the Export Size to 6x, and the format to TIFF (highest quality) (see figure 7).
Click Next, name your file, Export, and let the viewer do its work! Then, move on to Step 3!
Step 3: Resizing your image for printing
To save your file for printing you will need the following:
- The TIFF file created from step 2
- An image editor such as Adobe Photoshop
Open the tiff file you created in step 2 in an image editor (This tutorial will use Adobe Photoshop). When the file opens, view its image size (see figure 8).
You’ll see the Image Size Dialog Box (see figure 9).
Notice the width and height? Brushes Viewer exports the TIFF file at 26″ x 40″ inches (Note: I’m using inches for this section, users not in America can switch to centimeters using the drop-down menus).
Huge, right? The only catch is the resolution below the width/height which is 72 dpi. The resolution is how many pixels or dots-per-inch (dpi) printers will print at, and most printers will need a resolution of at least 150. The more dots/pixels per inch, the better quality your image will be. I recommend going with at least 300 for quality results, and some printers prefer an even higher dpi such as 600 or 1200. If you have a printer in mind, contact them and ask what dpi they prefer for image files.
To set your file at print quality, change the resolution (in this example, 300), and then change the width/height to the size you’d like your painting to be printed at (in this case 16″ x 24″).
Click OK and let Photshop do its work. Once complete, you’ll have a file ready for the printer! Note that the file size will be quite large because you’ve increased the resolution.
I like to save this higher resolution as a copy (TIFF file) so I can go back to the original TIFF created by Brushes Viewer and make other files at different sizes if I wish.
You’ve just taken a painting made on a 3.5 inch screen and can now hang a 26 x 40 inch canvas or print on your wall! It should be noted that you may need to work with your printer to adjust colors and/or other issues to get the perfect print, this tutorial is only inteded to show you how to save large, print-ready files.
So far, I’ve had a 8 x 12″ and 12 x 18″ canvas printed from canvasondemand and the quality has been wonderful.
Have you had large prints made of your paintings? Let us know the printer used and share your experience in the comments!