Batch Resizing Photographs
April 14, 2004 8:07 PM   Subscribe

This can't be that hard. I have thousands of digital images taken with high resolution cameras. I'd like to e-mail about 100 of them to various folks so I'm trying to convert them to an e-mail friendly size/resolution that doesn't assume everyone has high speed connections. I'd like to do this in some sort of batch mode - select a bunch of images and do this all at once. I've tried Graphic Converter and iView Media Pro - neither of which can do the trick. Oh they make an effort all right, but they don't really work. I'm still running on Mac OS 9 so I'm looking for something that works there or - can iPhoto do this and will it be the thing that finally forces that new purchase on me?
posted by dhacker to Media & Arts (20 answers total)
Perhaps you can explain what "they don't really work" means, in more detail. GraphicConverter is clunky, but I can usually make it do what I want, after enough struggling.
posted by xil at 8:09 PM on April 14, 2004

Do you have Photoshop (version 5.5 or later)? There's a "Save for Web" option that'd do it.
posted by amberglow at 8:11 PM on April 14, 2004

Response by poster: Photoshop will work but not in batch mode. Graphic Converter in non-batch mode will do exactly what I want - it scales the images and it works fine. In batch mode however there is no scaling option.
posted by dhacker at 8:18 PM on April 14, 2004

That's funny, I'm looking at GraphicConverter right now, and there's a Scale option in batch mode (not that I can use it -- need a registered copy).

File->Convert..., then click the Batch... button, select Scale from the functions, press the Add button, then set the scale parameters and OK. Then select your source files, press the Convert button, and there you are.

(Like I said, it's clunky as all hell, but it does generally work...)
posted by xil at 8:39 PM on April 14, 2004

ImageMagick will do batches easily. I don't know how funky the MacOS version is, but for us command line people It Just Works. And you don't have to pony up for Photoshop.
posted by majick at 8:39 PM on April 14, 2004

GraphicConverter is the way to go for Mac OS 9.

If you had Mac OS X, GraphicConverter or ImageMagick are both good.

In batch mode, it's easy to miss the button for adding scaling functions.

iPhoto will do this for you.

Perhaps though, since there are so many, you should be thinking about posting them to a website running some sort of gallery software (like Gallery) and sending out an URL instead...
posted by tomierna at 9:10 PM on April 14, 2004

Yes, iPhoto can do this, though I'm sure there's plenty of stuff in OS 9 that can do it as well.

I'm not sure how or if you can control the JPEG compression when exporting from iPhoto, but you can easilly control resolution. Select the photos you want and then go to File > Export > File Export and you'll see the controls to scaling the photos to any resolution you want.
posted by willnot at 9:13 PM on April 14, 2004

Oh, and if you upload them to ophoto, then your friends can view the down-sampled images, and they can order full sized prints if they want too.
posted by willnot at 9:15 PM on April 14, 2004

Actually, there is a BATCH function in Photoshop (it's in my 6.0.1... and if I recall, it's also in 5.5)...

Create/Record an action that does what you'd like... then, from the FILE menu, choose AUTOMATE > BATCH... then in the dialog, choose the action you've just recorded.

Pretty straight forward.

I've used it plenty of times to shrink images down to e-mail friendly sizes, as well as much more complex commands (rotate, scale, switch to RGB mode, sharpen, save as...).

Good luck!
posted by silusGROK at 9:24 PM on April 14, 2004

yeah why on earth use email it's not designed for it as you are finding out with the size problems. Sure, you can beat it into submission and hope everyone gets their email assuming each persons POP3 server is configured to accept large attachments and it doesnt choke their client software. There are better ways like willnot suggested.
posted by stbalbach at 9:24 PM on April 14, 2004

Mihov Image Resizer works great, and it has a batch mode. I use it all the time to resize pix to 640x480 for e-mailing or Web use.
posted by Vidiot at 10:01 PM on April 14, 2004

why on earth use email

Come on folks, stick to the question. dhacker probably has lots of personal moments he wants to share with the individuals who were there. Loading all 100 of them into the same ofoto page and spamming them all with a single link isn't going to be intimate. For all we know, some of the photos might be embarassing or otherwise inappropriate to show to everyone.

Dhacker - to my knowledge any of the above suggestions should get you where you're going. I'll mention Fireworks in addition to Photoshop. I guess it comes down to what you have available.

On second thought, you might try using iPhoto in the following way. It has the ability to export a "gallery" or "album" or whatever as a folder with html files and thumbnails. Instead of then putting that folder on a website somewhere, just weed out the resized photos.

Just get all the photos you want into one iPhoto album, then go to File--->Export. Click on the Web Page tab, set your desired "image" size, click "Export," and choose a folder. After that, you ought to be able to sort that folder's contents by size to find the resized images.
posted by scarabic at 10:03 PM on April 14, 2004

If you have a lot of photos that you think are particularly good, what about burning them onto CD and sending through the post. I'm doing this increasinly since getting a digital camera with family pictures to relatives. That way, the people get high res copies which they can keep forever and don't take up an enormous amount of space on their computer and that they can go through at their own pace without any worry about internet connections.
posted by humuhumu at 11:33 PM on April 14, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks for all the suggestions, scarabic's comment is right on. I certainly don't want to send all of the pictures to everyone or I'd put up a website. Out of the 100 "good" pictures I have I want to send different subjects to different people. I had missed the Scale command in Graphic Converter and Mihov Image Resizer seems worth a look. Oh, did I mention I'd like to make the filenames specific after conversion as well? One thing at a time though I suppose.
posted by dhacker at 3:40 AM on April 15, 2004

By the way, here's a less eye-popping website for Mihov Image Resizer. (same content, better design.)

And I know of no way to batch re-name...that's the one part that's something of a pain. Mihov IR does rename smaller pix to "mini-[original filename]", though.
posted by Vidiot at 4:19 AM on April 15, 2004

There are batch renamers for OS 9.
posted by Dick Paris at 5:25 AM on April 15, 2004

Graphic Converter can batch-rename with fairly sophisticated options (eg prepend/postpend an optionally zero-padded serial number to the base name, add the date, add an optional suffix, change the dot-extension). I use this a lot.

It's also got an image-sorting view: drop a folder full of images on the GC icon and you'll see. You can edit filenames by hand from this view, delete images, or open them for editing.
posted by adamrice at 7:07 AM on April 15, 2004

Easy Thumbnails. You can resize them to any size you want, not just thumbnail size.
posted by kelrae3 at 7:16 AM on April 15, 2004

I guess I should read the post fully before responding...Easy Thumbnails only works on Windows. Sorry....
posted by kelrae3 at 7:18 AM on April 15, 2004

Are you using the make>"convert image files..." option in Iview?

I use it all the time to resize images.

And there are several options to batch rename in iview as well.
posted by milovoo at 8:36 AM on April 15, 2004

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