Slides of the Future

Q. I recently took high-resolution pictures of my artwork on a digital camera. Unfortunately, the contest I want to submit my piece to requires that I send in a slide of my work. It took so much time to shoot the piece right the first time that I don’t want to retake the pictures. Is it possible to get slides made from digital images? I’ve asked some local photo shops, but they’re not sure.

A. With the advent of digital technology, many new options are available for artists and photographers that weren’t in the past. I recently spoke with a representative of Robin Imaging (, located in Cincinnati, and was told that it’s definitely possible to have slides made from digital images. In fact, they do it inhouse for a fee of $4.50 a slide if you’re looking to get your work back within two days, or $5.75 a slide for a one-day turnaround time. To make an order you must spend a minimum of $15; having UPS ship the slides directly to your door costs around $8.

To make the best quality slide possible, according to Robin Imaging, there are a few requirements for sending your digital work. Using your computer’s photo-editing software, you must make sure that the image is a minimum of 400 pixels per inch (also known as 400 ppi) and that its dimensions are exactly 2×3. You should then save the image as an RGB file. This means that the image will consist entirely of red, green and blue pixels, much like those found on your television screen. After you’ve completed this process, you must save the final image as a TIFF file, which you can either e-mail to the company along with the electronic order form or burn onto a writable CD and send to the company by regular mail.

Other photo processing companies like Pete’s PhotoWorld ( and Ritz Camera ( will perform similar tasks to convert digital images into slides. Instructions, requirements and turnaround times may vary, so check with the individual developer as to what the image and shipping requirements may be.

If you find that these options are too complicated or that you don’t have all the equipment necessary to make a high-quality slide, you can always send your images to a photo processing company like Kodak (, which can provide you with a variety of options, including a method that turns your digital image into a traditional photograph, which can then be developed into a slide.

Born in Utah and raised on a cattle ranch in the Big Hole Valley of southwestern Montana, Colleen K. Howe learned very early to love the wide-open landscapes of the West. She studied painting at Brigham Young University and raised a family, then turned her attention to pastels about nine years ago. Since that time she’s won a variety of awards and showings, including an exhibition with the Pastel Society of America. Now a regular workshop instructor and teacher based in Sandy, Utah, she’s president of the Pastel Society of Utah, and former president and board member of the Intermountain Society of Artists. Her paintings can be found in numerous galleries, as well as in private and corporate collections.

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