You might have heard about responsive design, adaptive design, fluid layouts and similar. Those terms usually refer to website and app design. Other graphic elements can also have several mutations. Elements such as logos, photography and illustration must often ‘respond’ to changes in dynamic artworks they are part of.

The coloured rectangles in the presented picture of Hampton Court House symbolise the A4 crop-frames at 300dpi. The House fits perfectly in those frames as the whole image has been optimised for that paper size, commonly used in Europe and the UK.

To be responsive-ready image must be large. Large enough so the focus point has sufficient resolution for e. g. litho-print. It also need to have plenty of neutral space, sort of hyper-bleed area, that can bee cut without loosing any important elements. Such images also require to have only a single, preferably central focus point or focus points put relatively closely together.

The image in the example has been composed from 2 images of the same site – one panoramic and the other at about 50mm focal length. Following there are examples of various applications of the same image. Responsive image application examples

Important side notes

  • It is handy to use link functionality of design software such as Adobe Illustrator or InDesign, rather than embedding the same, huge image in every single artwork, saves on disk space and also saving times
  • It is best to plan the photo-shooting with responsive design in mind. Widen your frame to include plenty of neutral ‘surrounding’, don’t worry if it is not relevant or even clash with the main subject – it is much easier to edit it out in post-production than adding ‘fake’ background to images cropped too tightly.

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