Best Resolution For Digital Art

Configuring the resolution in your digital illustrations is important because it dictates the visual quality and “crispness” of the details.

The best resolution for digital art is 300 DPI as it allows for a high level of detail without adding much overhead for your drawing software and hardware in your computer or device. It is also the standard resolution for printing photos.

Continue scrolling down below, as I have explained all about resolution and other terms you need to know about. 😎

What Is Resolution And How Is It Measured?

Resolution determines the visual quality and crispness of photos, illustrations, and other visual media. It is measured in PPI (pixels per inch) or DPI (dots per inch).

The higher the PPI or DPI of a photo, the more details it can contain.

I recommend everyone to use 300 DPI or PPI as their standard resolution for the best quality and drawing experience.

What Is The Difference Between PPI And DPI?

PPI or pixels per inch is usually used to describe resolutions displayed in monitors and screens.

The higher the PPI of a digital photo, the more details you can zoom in on without it pixelating.

DPI or dots per inch is usually used to describe resolutions in physical prints of media.

The higher the DPI of a digital photo, the more details it will include in the printed copies.

So, Which One Should I Use?

The terms can be quite confusing, so I would recommend you use whichever is the default term used in the drawing software that you are using.

However, if you are planning on printing your digital art, definitely use the 300 DPI resolution to be safe. Most printers can produce high-quality prints at 300 DPI without slowing down too much.

Can I Use More Than 300 DPI/PPI?

Yes, but you should be wary of your devices’ RAM capacity because it might slow down your device if dimensions are also large and do more harm than good.

For devices with low spec hardware, you might be experience delays in transfer from drawing tablet to screen, in stylus recognition, application of filters, switching brushes, etc.

In other words, it might make your drawing experience less optimal.

The higher amount of details also means storing a lot more information, which means much larger file sizes, and saving or opening those files will take a longer time. You may even risk crashing your software which may ultimately lead to losing your drawing progress.

Going beyond the 300 DPI/PPI resolution is unnecessary for most cases. Unless you’re making something incredibly detailed for professional purposes, 300 DPI/PPI will do without a problem.

What Is The Minimum Resolution Recommended?

If you for any reason can’t use 300 DPI/PPI, an acceptable resolution for both prints and online displays would start at 150 DPI/PPI.

Anything lower than that might appear pixelated and cease to produce a clear print-out of the illustration.

What Is The Maximum Resolution Recommended?

Going beyond 300 DPI/PPI is unnecessary if you’re only drawing illustrations with few details.

If you think that 300 DPI/PPI is not enough for the level of detail you plan on putting on your drawing, you can go up depending on your devices’ capacity.

I can’t pinpoint an exact number, but a lot of professional artists use up to 600 DPI. If you think your device can handle it, you can try.

Test it out for yourself to see if your device can handle it smoothly. Just make sure that you saved your progress before playing around with the resolution.

Configuring Resolution With Canvas Size

Canvas size is entirely different from a resolution. Some artists might confuse these two so let’s make this clear.

Canvas is the measurable size of the surface that you are drawing on. The resolution would dictate how much detail you can draw in that space.

Example: if two canvases with the same size differ in resolution, the image quality would also differ since the canvas with a higher resolution can hold more detail.

You can learn more about canvas size for digital art here.

About the author: My name is Marcus, I am a lawyer (LL.M.) and the founder of this website. Besides sometimes doing lawyer stuff, I like to draw and improve my skills as a “digital artist”, and I write about what I learn on this website. If you want to know more about me or reach out, then you can click here.

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