How To Display Photographs In A Grid
How to display photographs in a grid. This is another project where you’ll use photographs that you’ve already taken and processed.
The idea is to put nine, or sixteen photographs together into one new image. Actually you can use a different number if you like, but these are the ones I’m using.
This could be achieved by adding full photos together in rows across and down. That would be an enormous, and probably impossible file size to work with.
It’s better to reduce the original photographs to a much smaller size. I end up with a normal size file to display photographs.
It’s easy to shoot photographs, load them on to a hard drive, and then forget about them.
You can have an ever increasing accumulation of photographs just sitting there. It can grown into thousands in a short time.
Occasionally it’s good to go back to them and do something with them. It’s better when you do something creative.
Starting a creative project
One idea is to show some of your images in a grid. This grid can be the same size and shape as a photograph, but be a mosiac of photos.
They can build into one or more great images. You can do it at a large enough scale so that it can print at an interesting size.
Just try to keep the file size small enough for you computer to handle it easily.
First I’m going to display photographs in a nine photo grid, and then in a sixteen photo version.
The easiest way to achieve this is to reduce the original photos to fraction of their original size. To do this you scale the images in the nine photo grid to 33.3%.
The ones used in the sixteen photo grid are reduces to 25%. I know this doesn’t sound right, but it is.
Building a nine photo grid to display photographs
I’m going to use Graphic Converter to do these. There is probably other software that will do this also, but I don’t know any.
You can paste photos into a Graphic Converter image to display photographs in nine different positions. It’s perfect for what I’m doing.
First choose the nine photos you want to show. These can be chosen at random or by a theme of your choosing. Then choose the order you want.
A nine image grid is easy. Paste them; top left, top centre, top right, left centre, centre, right centre, bottom left, bottom centre and bottom right.
This can be done in one grid. Use photos that are all the size or at least the same aspect ratio.
That means that the height and width have the same relation to each other. This could be 3 x 2, that is; the width might be 3,000px and the height 2,000px. Or it could be 4 x 3, say 4,400px x 3,300px.
Reduce them all to 33.3% and paste the smaller versions into a new canvas at the original size.
If some of the photos are of different sizes to others, reduce them to 33.3% of the blank canvas. Now, if some are of a different aspect ratio, crop the bigger ones to fit.
Showing images of stones and trees
I have two nine image grids here, and they’re both on a theme. One is of rocks and the other is of trees and shrubs.
I have a series of photos that consist of close ups of stones. The entire canvas is filled with them and nothing else.
The idea I had was to have nothing else in the photographs. That way there is nothing against which you can see what size they are. They could be big rocks or tiny stones.
Actually they are very small. They were arranged like a still life rather than shot in their natural surrounding.
The second of the nine grid display of photographs is of trees and shrubs. Again I focused in close to fill the frame with foliage.
This time I shot the trees as they were, just growing naturally. They show almost all green but there is an odd glimpse of sky showing through.
Starting the sixteen photo grid
To start your sixteen image grid project, select sixteen images. Again make sure that they’re all the same aspect ratio and it’s easier if they’re all the same size.
Apart from the aspect ratio it doesn’t matter how you choose the photographs. They can be totally random images, or display photographs according to a theme.
Use your creativity, or your sense of design while you work. Depending on the photographs you have it’s possible to build great images like this.
While all the photographs I used in the nine image grid, fitted straight in, they won’t in a bigger grid. You’ll have to fit smaller grids into a bigger one.
Use four, four photo grids to display photographs
The first thing to do, and that I did, is to select the photos you’re going to use. This is the same as for the nine photo grid image.
For the first example I used landscapes. Of the ones I used, some are rural, some urban, and some are of the sea.
I reduced them all to 25%, that’s 25% of the length and height, not 25% of the area.
The way to construct a sixteen panel grid in Graphic Converter is to create to create four, four panel grids. Then fit the smaller grids into the bigger one.
I made four blank canvases. They were 50% of the size of what the finished photograph was going to be. These were all capable of holding four of the reduced photos. When full they were all able to fit into the finished work.
Once I had chosen the sixteen photographs I was going to use, I began pasting them into the smaller grids.
The order in which you paste them will determine how to display photographs in a grid. It’s a simple matter of choice. I just pasted them randomly, filling all four panel grids.
Make more than one sixteen grid image
When I had the four smaller grids full, I then pasted them in to the larger grid. I pasted them in the order that they appear in this blog post. That resulted in the first of the finished sixteen grid images.
As I wrote earlier these were just randomly chosen. I went through the photos from one camera and these are all close to each other, time wise.
I have three other images of the same variety. These are more thematic and look a little better.
When you start to do this project it’s possible to spend a very long time choosing the photos to use. You can plot to have similar photos in various ares to balance each other.
That could take a long time. It will be worth it if you want your finished image for a particular reason.
For now just pick photos quickly and fit them in randomly. You’ll probably be surprised with what you get. When you finish one or two like this, then you can try to be more ambitious.
If you allow yourself to get bogged down in the first one, you might give up altogether. Finish one and others will be easier, like most things.
Display photographs by theme
The second image I constructed was on a theme. All the shots are of waterways in or around Galway. They include shots of The River Corrib, The Eglinton Canal, Galway Docks and Galway Bay.
The displayed photographs are randomly inserted, but I think the finished image looks good.
First I opened up all sixteen photos and reduced them to the size I needed. After that I created four blank canvases, each to include four photographs.
The open photos were stacked behind the blank canvas, and listed in a drop down menu. I chose the photos from the drop down menu without looking at them, and inserted them as they came.
One of the cameras I have is a ten year old Canon point and shoot. I usually stick it in a pocket when I go for a walk.
All of these photos were taken while I was on one of those walks.
Water seems to be everywhere around Galway so it’s not easy to take a walk and completely avoid some.
The final two images
The other two grid images are themed also. One is composed of various still life images, the other is football themed.
Still life is an easy subject to try. All you need is a table or something similar to display things on, and items to group there on.
Considering still life can seem limiting until you try it. Then you realise that it’s a genre with almost limitless possibilities, where anything goes.
The only limitation is your imagination and finding some items you can visualise.
Regardless of where your imagination brings, you can get started with what’s at hand.
The next image is on the theme of football. These photos are from the only game that I’ve photographed so far.
The team in white is Galway United and the red team is Carlow. Galway won it four goals to three.
The finished image is what’s important
This idea can be implemented in other ways. You can crop the images into squares and display the photographs in a square image.
Another variation of the idea is to say group them four across and two deep. Perhaps three across and six deep.
It’s also possible to start with a blank canvas and fill it with different size fragments of photographs. The fragments could be of different sizes.
When you decide to display photographs in a grid, be as creative as you want.
The important thing is to finish with the image you want, not how you make it.
How to display the finished grids
When you finish building grids to display photographs, you can decide how to use them.
One way is to use one as wallpaper on your computer.
Another way is to print some and use them as wall art. If you’re going to display photographs like this, you can make the final image a bit bigger.
As long as individual photos are being used at their original size or smaller, they should look good. Just remember that the file size could be enormous and hard to work with.
They can also be used as postcards or greeting cards.
You can just leave them on your hard drive and construct a slide show with them.