View Full Version : Working HUGE! 8 feet inches by 9 feet

03-01-2014, 09:27 PM
I've been hired to paint a mural digitally. I'm using Corel Painter X and the final art is supposed to 8 feet inches by 9 feet. It's going to be printed on vinyl to be applied to an interior wall.

I've started the art in my computer at approximately one third of the final print piece. Let's say it's 32 by 34.5 inches to keep it simple. The resolution is 300 ppi. So it has to be enlarged by the printer to 8 feet by 9 feet.

How's that going to look? It's supposed to be (almost) trompe l'oeil. Will there be any problem with pixellation? Does anybody here have any experience creating this kind of extra large art digitally?


03-01-2014, 11:10 PM
The printer should be able to tell you what resolution will be required.

That should have been in the specs for the job.

If it isn't contact them immediately.

03-03-2014, 01:03 AM
The people who hired me had no idea about how to print it. I chose 300 ppi because I knew that was the minimum for a good image that my machine could handle. I've talked to two printers about it and they tell me 300 ppi is fine. But since my contract requires ME to pay the cost of printing, I'm concerned about what might go wrong.

Either way, your answer isn't really an answer, although I appreciate your help. My question is: When the printer takes my 300ppi file and enlarges it 200 percent, will it look blurry and/or aliased?

Thanks again for your reply

Airbrush Mel
03-03-2014, 08:49 AM
Hi Saxdragon,
Yes if you start with an image of 1m x 1m at 300dpi and then enlarge it 200% it will start to look pixilated/blurred. I can't do feet and inches so lets say your end canvas will be 300 x 300cm then you can make a digital canvas of 100 x 100cm at (300dpi x 3) 900 dpi so when you enlarge it the pixels will be roughly 300dpi when printing at the larger size.

The larger the canvas and the higher the dpi can effect how the software works (lag) depending on your hardware.

It is always better to be on the higher side of dpi when printing. I suggest you contact the printers you are going to use and ask them what file settings they need to be able print the final project. They must know.

I hope that makes sense. If I'm wrong and someone else knows better please say so because I'm not an expert. Enlarging percentages are not simply 100% or 200%, A5 to A4 enlargement is 142%.
Cheers Mel

03-03-2014, 09:01 AM
The primary thing to consider is how far away you intend for people to be when they see the mural. 300 dpi is what you typically find printed on paper, where people are seeing things up close. Murals are something people see from farther back, and so dpi is often a bit less. However, yes, it will be pixelated if you blow it up, for sure. However, that's like basically all oversized prints displayed on a wall. What would be most useful is to print out a section of the mural at different dpi, and see what the experience is like at 300, 200, and 150 dpi from, say, 2' away, then 5', etc. Then you and your client will know what res is acceptable.

If you still want 300 dpi, but find your computer choking on the size of the file, you can start at lower res to lay your foundations, then use a program like Perfect Resizer it blow up in res. Then you can go in only for detail at a higher res.

03-10-2014, 01:13 PM
there are not that many printers which will be able to print 96 x 108 in a single go. Most will want to do it in 2 or 3 panels. Likewise you might work on the image in 3 "panels" as you create it and then stitch them together in PS for the final render. This will allow you to work at a higher resolution that your machine could handle if you tried to do the whole thing at once.

as an aside I recently used MuralsYourWay.com to print a 60 x 48 piece. They were fast with good quality and a competitive price.

03-20-2014, 07:42 PM
I see I might be late to the party on this one, but I hope it helps.

Have you ever heard of Bert Monroy? He's a digital artist that works huge.

He works by breaking his paintings down into their elements in multiple files - example being http://www.bertmonroy.com/damen/damen.html a 3ft by 10ft mural comprised of 50 psd files. Then putting them together at the end to render. Granted it was a 1.7gig final image, but better that than a really massive working file.

Depending on your computer power and subject matter it may be an option
to work in pieces at actual size and put them together at the end.

03-26-2014, 08:59 PM
bert monroy seems lackluster for the time and care he puts into his images they seem underwhelming in all regards, like someone's hobby they have to post to social media

04-02-2014, 11:42 AM
New to the forum. Greetings!

I did a backdrop for Postal Instant Press, their vendor convention at the Las Vegas MGM, back in the late 90's

The final output was 20 feet by 60 feet. It was printed in five 12 foot wide panels.

The initial drawing was done in Illustrator at a quarter scale. That illustrator file was rasterized to 24 DPI in those 5 segments with 2 inches of overlap.

At the time it pushed our Risc processor based Power Macs to the very limit, taking a LONG time to rasterize. But it worked.

Large Format printing uses much lower resolution, so as initially suggested, the first thing you'll need to do is consult with the printer.

The material you print on will make a difference too.

Building-sized graphics are usually viewed from a distance so you can get away with a lot. Keep in mind that in modern super-graphics, a transparent medium, a scrim, can be used as well. Those are often printed at 12 DPI.

05-09-2014, 05:59 AM
The larger you print, the smaller dpi you need. No need to go over 50DPI when you print that large.

05-23-2014, 10:50 AM
This is an interesting and informative thread.

06-17-2014, 02:36 PM
It's worth remembering that a hundred bucks of memory and another bit for an SSD - which you should have already - will give you the ability to work on absurdly huge images as long as you're not trying to do stuff like max quality depth of field blur on the whole shebang. Even an uncompressed 64000x64000 pixel image is only going to eat around 20gb. You shouldn't be RAM or storage limited these days; capability is insanely cheap.

07-01-2014, 11:53 PM
when i do art for billboards and such, it wont be a problem if I do it in vectors but once rasters come into the picture, you'll have to work out the specs with the printer and study things like viewing distance, ink tolerance, longevity, etc. For commnercial ads, we usuallt drop to arounf 50 dpi whenever we';re working larger than 10 feet