Banner on roll logo

How to Prepare Your Images For Large-Format Printing

One of the most important aspects of any eye-catching large-scale visual is the use of high-quality photos and imagery. Whether you’re creating a small poster or a massive 50-foot roll banner, it’s crucial to choose the right images to represent your brand effectively. However, selecting the perfect photos can be challenging when it comes to large-scale graphics. You must ensure that the images are vivid and clear even when stretched to larger-than-life proportions.

Here are some essential factors to consider when submitting your photos to a print solutions provider. By following these guidelines, you can set your artwork and your business up for success:

What's the Right Size and Resolution

When it comes to printing solutions, it’s crucial to ensure that your images meet the required specifications. Although your print vendor will typically provide you with their preferred specifications, it’s essential to understand some of the terms that can be confusing.

Pixels per inch (PPI) is the standard measurement for image resolution, and it refers to the density of pixels per square inch of space they occupy. A larger PPI leads to higher image resolution, creating sharper images for large-format graphics.

Most commercially printed materials require roughly 300 PPI, which is also the minimum number of pixels per inch to create a high-resolution image. In contrast, smaller photos found on the internet are often only 72 PPI, which can lead to pixelation and blurriness when enlarged on a computer screen.

Increasing the resolution of these images results in less pixelation and distortion, as more pixels per inch provide greater clarity when the image is enlarged. To ensure that your images look their best, consider asking your print solutions provider about their PPI preferences and use higher resolutions whenever possible.

How Do I Account For the Image's Viewing Distance?

When it comes to large-format graphics, the distance between the audience and the image is crucial. Different viewing scenarios require different image sizes. For instance, viewers will look at a menu image closer than a billboard image. As images become larger, their effective resolution decreases, making viewing distance and audience proximity important considerations.

While a photo may appear pixelated up close, it will look fine when viewed from across a room. However, enlarging the image inherently decreases the number of pixels per inch. For example, a photo with 300 PPI in a magazine would only have 14 PPI when stretched across a 15-foot banner.

Although 300 PPI is the general industry standard, your print solutions provider can help determine if a lower resolution is acceptable depending on the nature and venue of the graphic.

Which File Format Should I Use?

Choosing the right image file format can be a tricky task, especially with the abundance of available options. Here is a brief overview of some of the most practical formats for your consideration:

  • JPEG – This is the most commonly used format that uses lossy compression to reduce the image file size. The quality of the image may decrease with multiple edits, so it’s best to avoid excessive modifications. However, it’s still a great option for most photo needs, as long as the size and resolution remain high.
  • TIFF – The tagged image file format is ideal when image quality is a top priority, and file size is not a concern. Professional photographers prefer this format because it uses lossless compression, allowing for unlimited edits without sacrificing image quality or introducing compression artifacts. Although the file size may be larger than JPEG, it’s worth the tradeoff.
  • PNG and GIF – While the portable network graphic and graphics interchange format may have their uses in digital formats, they are not recommended for print.

Where Can I Find a Provider to Print My Large-Format Graphics?

Whatever your large-format printing needs may be, Banners on a RollⓇ has you covered.

Our team of experts can help you achieve your business goals through a variety of visually stunning solutions. From upgrading your customer experience to building your brand identity and beyond, we offer personalized services tailored to your specific objectives.

Trust us to create and print custom-made graphics that will take your business to the next level.

Learn more by emailing us at