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If you want to send an image via e-mail to someone, you might want to downsample that and save it as an e-mail- friendly file format like a JPEG. So, here I have an image that's probably too big to send on an e-mail, so we want to learn how to do this very efficiently using Photoshop's Save for Web command. Under the File menu is Save for Web & Devices, and that will open up this very large dialog box where you have a lot of control over how this image gets sampled and saved down for a web-friendly format, whether that be a GIF file, a PNG, or a JPEG.
The default view for this is to show up in the Optimized tab. What's helpful is that should you see the 2-Up display where you can see the original image on the left, and you can just click and drag to pan both of them at the same time, then the image on the right about what it will look like when you're all done. Right now, this image is set to be a GIF. And if you click on the left or right section in this 2-Up display, you'll see the information on the right-hand side changes based on which pane you have selected. So, I'm going to choose the image on the right, the one we're optimizing. For my file format, I'm going to choose JPEG.
From here, you get to choose your quality setting, so you can choose Low, Medium, High, Very High and Maximum. If you're doing a image that's going to be posted on a web page or going to be e-mailed to someone, High is usually a good place to start. Very High and Maximum tend to give you file sizes that are little bit larger than you actually need. So, we'll go with High. The Quality setting is just a slider that the High Medium quality acts as presets for. So, if I go Quality 86, that changes that to Very High. So, if I change this back to Medium, you'll see the Quality setting changes to 30. So, let's get this back to High.
One thing you might want to be able to do is actually change the size of the particular image to fit certain pixel dimensions. So, if I want this to be e-mail size, I might want to make the Height a little bit shorter. So, let's make it, let's say, 800x600. So, it's 600 tall, and that will change the Width appropriately to fit within and stay at that proportion. The Quality lets you choose which algorithm is used, just like in the Image Size dialog box inside Photoshop proper. I'm going to choose Bicubic Sharper, because I'm making the image smaller.
If you were making your image larger, you would choose Bicubic Smoother, but we'll go ahead and choose Bicubic Sharper. This gives me a preview of what the image would look like. Once I click in the Preview again, it shows you the new size. Down here, it gives you a preview of what the file size will be. So, we started with a 703K full-size file, and we're getting this to 68.35K, simply by changing the image size and choosing a different compression setting. There are lots of other options. One that's nice is that images that are going to be viewed on a web page or sent via e-mail are typically constrained to the sRGB color space.
So, Save for Web can actually automatically convert your images to sRGB if they're not already in that working space. So, that's pretty handy. When you've got the options set the way you want them, you can go ahead and hit the Save button and save this out to your desktop or wherever file location you plan on saving this. I'm going to go ahead and choose the Desktop, and we'll call it MyJPEG.jpg and go ahead and hit the Save button. That's it. You're done. When it's finished, it closes the dialog box and takes you back to Photoshop. One thing to note is that you're not actually saving over your original file.
You're saving a copy. So, your original file here is untouched, and you can just continue doing whatever it is that you need to do.
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