Your camera can help you frame your photo so that it fits within the confines of a specific social media crop. 

Cropping info is seen when framing the photo, here a 4:5 crop was selected to assist with composing an image suitable for instagram.

Add cropping info

Deep in the custom function menus is the add cropping info option. This is particularly helpful for mirrorless cameras, but also useful for DSLRs when shooting in live view mode. This cropping info is in the form a pair of guides that show where the chosen crop fits within the whole frame. Say you are shooting images in portrait orientation and want to use them on Instagram. You’ll need to create 4:5 images as that is the largest that Instagram allows, seeing the cropping guides helps you frame your shot and avoid the need to extend the canvas after you have edited the shot.

Added cropping marks set the default crop in DPP, and some other applications such as Photoshop and Lightroom. You can readily change the crop to anything else, all the way to an uncropped image. This setting works for RAW and JPEG images.

Cropping/aspect ratio OR Still image aspect ratio

Depending on the camera you may see Cropping/aspect ratio OR Still image aspect ratio terms used in the menus, but they mean the same thing. This setting is in the shooting section of the menus, and usually offers four aspect ratios, the default 3:2 plus 4:3 16:9 and 1:1. The key difference is that if you save your photos as JPG then they will be cropped and the pixels outside of the chosen area will be lost forever. If you shoot in RAW, then the crops are similar to cropping info above, the files have the crop preset in most software, but you can extend back to see all the pixels that were in the original 3:2 frame. Cameras offer a choice of adding black bars to hide the parts of the image that will not be captured, or having marker lines similar to the cropping info.

There can be only one

If you choose to use the still image aspect ratio, then cropping info cannot also be added and vice versa. If you attach an RF-S lens or EF-S lens and adapter to a full-frame EOS R-series camera then cropping info is also not available since the still image aspect ratio is set to 1.6x crop.


Advent Calendar of Tips

This year I’m writing a quick tip each day up until the 25th of December, here’s some of the others I have already posted.