PT Featurette: Make Your Low-Res Photos into Half-Tone Poster Art!

Posted by Personal Throws on 9/2/2014 to PersonalThrows
  Next Post
PT Featurette: Make Your Low-Res Photos into Half-Tone Poster Art!
PT-Featurette-Rasterbator

It goes without saying that most people have one or two images they'd like to use for print that don't fit our strict image file-size requirements. After all, it's not always easy to obtain the original high-definition version of a photograph. Sometimes, one doesn't even exist.

Needless to say, we can more than understand how frustrating it can be for our customers who don't have access to such files but want a specific image on their blanket, towel, or canvas to be told their image will not work. Our team has dedicated a good deal of time to trying to find a worthwhile solution that exact issue because we sincerely want to make our customers happy. It is now thanks to Matias Ärje – a Finnish Internet enthusiast and connoisseur – that we are able to offer a working solution for you, the customers.


The solution comes in the form of The Rasterbator. In spite of its iffy name Rasterbator is a powerful, free-to-use online tool that blow up ANY picture or photo you have to enormous-size dimensions (although, it does have limitations on how big you can scale the image, but that shouldn't be a problem with the size of the layouts needed for our products)

The solution comes in the form of The Rasterbator. In spite of its iffy name Rasterbator is a powerful, free-to-use online tool that blow up ANY picture or photo you have to enormous-size dimensions (although, it does have limitations on how big you can scale the image, but that shouldn't be a problem with the size of the layouts needed for our products).

We encourage you to try the tool out of for yourself – as it will work on any photo, low or high resolution – and can produce a number of desirable effects when processing your image. However, we've decided to include a quick tutorial in this newsletter to give you, the customers, an idea of how Rasterbator works and what it can do. If you wish to skip past this and go directly to the specs chart for our products to use with the tool, just click here.

We've selected an smaller image of Kabosu the Dog. This file looks clear on our screen, however – like most web images ­– is too low resolution to print as a larger blanket. We ideally want this image to be big enough for a 60” x 80” Polar Fleece Blanket, so we're going to use Rasterbator to make a layout to that exact size.

Kabosu is ready for her close-up.

We'll start by going to The Rasterbator's site and clicking “Create Your Poster.” We'll start by going to The Rasterbator's site and clicking “Create Your Poster.”

This option will take you to an upload page where you can upload your image, either by clicking “Choose File”/”Browse” which will allow you to browse your computer's hard drive for the file, or by dragging and dropping the file into the box with a dashed line border on the right side of the screen. We're going to drag and drop our photo of Kabosu..

This option will take you to an upload page where you can upload your image, either by clicking “Choose File”/”Browse” which will allow you to browse your computer's hard drive for the file, or by dragging and dropping the file into the box with a dashed line border on the right side of the screen. We're going to drag and drop our photo of Kabosu.

After your image finishes uploading, the tool will display options for the size of your layout. Several presets are already there, but we're going to ignore those and choose “Custom.” We're also going to uncheck “Add Margin” since the layout won't need one. The Output size should also be set to 1 sheet (wide or tall, depending on the orientation of your image).  We're going to input our values for a 60” x 80” layout. Unfortunately, the tool only accepts metric measurements, so we'll need to convert inches to millimeters – which will be entered as 2032 mm by 1524 mm. As you can see, the tool as automatically cropped any slight differences in size to the entered dimensions. Once's everything's in order, hit “Continue.”

After your image finishes uploading, the tool will display options for the size of your layout. Several presets are already there, but we're going to ignore those and choose “Custom.” We're also going to uncheck “Add Margin” since the layout won't need one. The Output size should also be set to 1 sheet (wide or tall, depending on the orientation of your image).

We're going to input our values for a 60” x 80” layout. Unfortunately, the tool only accepts metric measurements, so we'll need to convert inches to millimeters – which will be entered as 2032 mm by 1524 mm. As you can see, the tool as automatically cropped any slight differences in size to the entered dimensions. Once's everything's in order, hit “Continue.”

The next step is choosing the Style the tool will output your image in. Several options are available, including the standard Rasterbation, which creates a poster-styled half-tone of your image with dots. We're going to keep this option selected and hit “Continue.”

The next step is choosing the Style the tool will output your image in. Several options are available, including the standard Rasterbation, which creates a poster-styled half-tone of your image with dots. We're going to keep this option selected and hit “Continue.”

The following step allows you to customize the color of the image the tool creates. You can select standard black, or another color for a two-color layout, but we're going to select “Multicolor” to try and preserve some of the image's original color. Hit “Continue.”

The following step allows you to customize the color of the image the tool creates. You can select standard black, or another color for a two-color layout, but we're going to select “Multicolor” to try and preserve some of the image's original color. Hit “Continue.”
In the Options section you can control half-tone settings that control the size of the dots and their density. We're going to leave “Interlaced halftone” selected for our pattern, and “Circle” selected for the shape used in our pattern. “Grid Size” controls the size of the circle (or other shape) used to create the pattern, with a minimum of 5 mm and a maximum of 25 mm. We're going to leave it at the default 10 mm for this. “Raster size” controls the minimum and maximum density of the dots on the grid – we're setting it to 25-125% to get fill in the grid a bit more than the default settings.

In the Options section you can control half-tone settings that control the size of the dots and their density. We're going to leave “Interlaced halftone” selected for our pattern, and “Circle” selected for the shape used in our pattern. “Grid Size” controls the size of the circle (or other shape) used to create the pattern, with a minimum of 5 mm and a maximum of 25 mm.

We're going to leave it at the default 10 mm for this. “Raster size” controls the minimum and maximum density of the dots on the grid – we're setting it to 25-125% to get fill in the grid a bit more than the default settings.

The following step allows you to customize the color of the image the tool creates. You can select standard black, or another color for a two-color layout, but we're going to select “Multicolor” to try and preserve some of the image's original color. Hit “Continue.”

The following step allows you to customize the color of the image the tool creates. You can select standard black, or another color for a two-color layout, but we're going to select “Multicolor” to try and preserve some of the image's original color. Hit “Continue.”

The tool will begin outputing a file, which can take a few minutes. When it finishes, your browser will automatically start downloading a PDF. Name this file what you wish, and save it.

The tool will begin outputing a file, which can take a few minutes. When it finishes, your browser will automatically start downloading a PDF. Name this file what you wish, and save it.
Open the saved PDF and zoom in. This will show you how the converted image will print. As you can see, Kabosu now looks like a poster. You've successfully created a high resolution file our team can work with.

Open the saved PDF and zoom in. This will show you how the converted image will print. As you can see, Kabosu now looks like a poster. You've successfully created a high resolution file our team can work with.

If you decide to give The Rasterbator a try and create your own artwork to the measurements of one of our products, you can simply upload the PDF file created as your image when placing an order. Our team will take care of the rest. It's as simple as that.

However, if you're not computer savvy and you wish to have our art team apply one of these effects for you simply send us an email and we'll be happy to assist you.

You can get to The Rasterbator from Here.

Product Size (Inches): Dimensions in Millimeters
30" x 40" 762 mm by 1016mm
50" x 60" 1270 mm by 1524 mm
60" x 80"
1524 mm by 2032 mm
54" x 38" 1321 mm by 851mm
60" x 54" 1511 mm by 1321 mm
70" x 54" 1842 mm by 1334 mm
30" x 60" 762 mm by 1524 mm
Note: Some sizes here may be conversions of our art team's desired size for production files and not ext conversion of the dimensions shown. These measurements will work for the products they correspond to regardless of this fact and it's highly recommended that you use them.

If the dimensions you need aren't shown here, please visit Metric-Conversions.org to get the measurements you need. Happy creating!