Need Assist with Jagged Text Added To Photograph

Posted By
Jan 7, 2008
Greetings All,

I tried to add text to a full-sized photo I shot wanting to use it on the cover of a group of photo’s to be printed. When I added the text using Adobe Photoshop, I created a new layer each for both lines of text. The font is Cotillion True Type, 150 pt. Sharp. No matter what size I use for the text, it appears very jagged.

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I then reduced the photo to 4 x 7, and tried again, and the text looks smooth – no jagged lines.

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Why is the text on the larger full-size photo jagged? I’ve tried using Anti-Aliased settings of Sharp, Smooth, Crisp, and it still appears as jagged when I save it with the text.

I’m concerned if I print the smaller photo, the color / vibrancy will not be as rich as on the larger format photo’s I’m submitting to the printer.

All feedback as to how to make the text lose the jagged edges on the larger photograph would be appreciated.



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Jan 7, 2008

Are you viewing your text at 100%


Jan 7, 2008

When I view the text at 100% in Photoshop, it looks smooth. The first link in my post is the original size of the photo I opened using Photoshop.

Jan 7, 2008
I’m not seeing any jagginess on the larger photo when viewed at 100% in the browser (95 ppi); when I look at it at 200% I see pixels, obviously. What size are you trying to print it? The image is 1200×1600 px, so at 300 ppi resolution it would print to 4×5.3". At that size, there would be no jagginess. If you are printing it at 8×10" it would be 150 ppi and the text still should look ok. However if you print it at 24×30" poster size, there will be only 50 ppi resolution, and the pixels will definitely be visible from a few feet away.

This is not a real high-resolution photo, at 1200×1600 px — just short of two megapixels. Unless you resample to a higher resolution, there will be some visible pixel effects in text superimposed over it when it’s enlarged beyond snapshot size.

One way to minimize the pixel effects is to use more antialiasing (antialiasing smooths out the pixelization). You say you used the "sharp" setting. Try using Crisp, Strong, or Smooth, which provide increasing levels of antialiasing. Here are examples of the various settings — the word "Savannah" in a similar font (Englisch 157 BT; I don’t have your font) and size at each setting, above yours:

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But things change if the image is resampled to a higher resolution. Here is the same image as above, but with the image resampled to twice the ppi. I’ve resampled using "nearest neighbor," which one doesn’t usually do with photos, in order to keep your text showing the jaggies exactly as before, but at twice the resolution, while showing how text at the new resolution will look.

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Since this keeps the photo, as well as your text, pixilated as though at the original resolution, I’ve now resampled using "bicubic smoother," which will show you how the text in my font will look when your image is also increased in resolution (but your text appears blurry because it was resampled).

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