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Aspect Ratios: Images & Video

Aspect Ratio is the ratio of the width to the height of an image, video, or screen. Understanding aspect ratios can help you better prepare your images or videos for the web or social media.

A common aspect ratio in still photography is 3:2. It is the default setting for many cameras, including Canon, Sony, and Nikon. In this horizontal orientation, the image would be 3 units wide and 2 units tall.

Covered Bridge Knights Ferry, California
3:2 Aspect Ratio (300W x 200H)
Covered Bridge Knights Ferry, California
2:3 Aspect Ratio (200W x 300H)

If the ratio is reversed to 2:3, the image would be 2 units wide and 3 units tall, as seen above.

Common horizontal aspect ratios include 16:9, 5:4, 4:3, 3:2, and 1:1. The vertical ratio is the opposite of the horizontal number, and 16:9 would become 9:16. Instagram Stories and Reels use the 9:16 aspect ratio.

Covered Bridge Knights Ferry, California
16:9 Aspect Ratio (300W x 168H)
Knights Ferry Covered Bridge 9:16 Aspect Ratio for Instagram Story.
9:16 Aspect Ratio
(168W x 300H)

A 3:2 aspect ratio is the default setting on many cameras, but modern cameras and iPhones have the option to select 16:9, 4:3, 4:5, 3:2, or 1:1. To reverse the ratio, turn the orientation of the camera vertical or horizontal.

Various ratios can be achieved by cropping your images in photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop. Cropping images to their appropriate dimensions before posting them will result in higher-quality photos, and a better user experience, for your website or social media followers.

If you’re editing photos on your Mac and need to transfer them efficiently to your iPhone, try using AirDrop. For organizing images in folders and sharing them in the cloud, check out Drive by Google Workspace.

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