Lecture 03.04: Scanning


The goal of this project is to intro­duce the prin­ci­ples and con­ven­tions used to scan images at set­tings appro­pri­ate for a vari­ety of formats.


Pro­duc­tion skills, while menial tasks, are a prime indi­ca­tor of crafts­man­ship in dig­i­tal files. Skills learned here will be used through­out your design career and as a foun­da­tion for future design classes. The objec­tive is to scan images for Lin­eart, Black and White, RGB and CMYK uses in mul­ti­color desk­top print­ing, pro­fes­sional repro­duc­tion, web and mul­ti­me­dia distribution.

Background Reading

  • https://​graph​ic​mama​.com/​b​l​o​g​/​b​e​s​t​-​n​e​w​-​i​m​a​g​e​-​f​o​r​m​a​t​s​-​2​0​2​1​/​#​n​e​w​-​i​m​a​g​e​-​f​o​r​m​ats

Artwork Types


Lin­eart: logos or illus­tra­tions in black and white only.

  • 1200 dpi Black and White (no grayscale) .tif

Con­tin­u­ous Tone: Pho­tographs or dig­i­tal cam­era images

  • 300 dpi Black and White (grayscale) or color (RGB) .psd, .tif, .eps
  • TIFF allows for com­pres­sion (LZW) and Mac/PC format.
  • JPEG is accept­able for tran­si­tions, but not the best for printing.


Lin­eart: Logos or illus­tra­tions in flat col­ors (no gradients).

  • 72 or 150 dpi. The less col­ors the bet­ter .gif, .png

Con­tin­u­ous Tone: Pho­tographs or dig­i­tal cam­era images

  • 72 or 150 dpi Black and White (grayscale) or color .jpg, .png
  • Both .jpg and .gif offer com­pres­sion options to reduce file size.
  • png files can have trans­parency, but also can be rather large.
  • New for­mats, such as .webp, .heic and .avif are higher qual­ity, but not well sup­ported across pub­lish­ing platforms.


Scan­ning is device depen­dent. Each scan­ner has their own set­tings and soft­ware, but these guide­lines, or some­thing sim­i­lar, should be used to select sim­i­lar set­tings avail­able within the menu system.