How to convert a photo to a PDF file without problems

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One of the strangest questions I’ve been asked in the past is how to convert a photo to PDF format. It is something that surprised me at first because I always used image formats, both for viewing on the computer and for printing. Over time I realized the virtues that this format can have, so let’s see how we can do it well.


A photograph in PDF format can solve many problems, especially if we have the idea of ​​taking our material to a printer. But it is also a good solution to share our files. There are many ways to do it, and not all of them give the best result. So we are going to recommend two or three methods that work without problems.

The advantages of delivering our photographs in PDF format

It is not a good idea if you want to set up an exhibition and you are looking for the highest possible quality. But if you want to print a book, don’t have direct visual control, or just want to share a file with multiple photos, this is the format for you.

It is easier to share if you want to send multiple photos together. It is a format that allows you to greatly reduce the weight of the file without losing quality, since it only keeps what we see, and rejects everything else.

pdf vs jpeg

There are no differences between the jpeg (left) and the pdf

A pdf (portable document format) file eliminates any problems with unsupported fonts. There is no need to be afraid of losing a design because the program you are working with does not recognize a font.

And above all, what interests us photographers the most is less likely to give color problems. What you see is what you get. You can even convert it to CMYK (in fact it is highly recommended) and you will not get into eleven-yard shirts if you are just a humble photographer.

How to convert to PDF with Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is one of the default programs for a large number of amateur and professional photographers. Y its conversion to PDF is extremely complete, to the point that it can scare a layman in the matter. But if you know which keys to play, the result will always be excellent, better than any other option on the market.

It is the printing format par excellence. If we send a jpeg to a printer, the colors will be saturated by default if we don’t know how to work with color management. So if we want to end one of the biggest headaches, don’t forget to follow these steps.

Save Pdf

Window to save as PDF

We open the photograph in Adobe Photoshop. It should already be revealed, so we can go to File>Save As and choose Photoshop PDF to open the settings window by clicking the Save button. Here we have to take into account many options.

In General we indicate the print quality. How can you intuit, the most logical thing is to choose high quality printing, although if we want more precision we mark PDF/X-1a (a pure CMYK) or PDF/X-3 (much more versatile if we are color freaks) to guarantee the maximum possible compatibility. And within the options, check ‘Optimize for fast web preview’ if that is your final destination.

In the Compression window I am not fond of touching the pixels per inch except for printing, so I always leave it at 300 dpi. And if I want to save space I leave Compression>jpeg and Image quality>Maximum. Here we can obviously play according to our final needs.

Comparative Pdf

A TIFF vs. a PDF

In closing, Output is the key to avoiding color problems. In Color conversion we put Convert to destination and among the options that appear in the Destination box, we mark the one that the printer asks us for. Whether it is RGB, Adobe RGB 1998, or sRGB; if we are asked for CMYK, the most common spaces are Coated FOGRA27 and Coated FOGRA39.

And it would be In Security I would not mark anything to avoid problems Compatibility and Summary tells us all the settings. We give Save PDF and everything is ready.

How to convert to pdf with other free options

We can find hundreds of programs and applications to transfer our files to jpeg format. I haven’t found one that has as many options as we just saw. It is true that many times we will not need all the settings, so here I will tell you how to do it for free and easily, without having to install anything.

The page that I like the most is that of the inventor of the format, which is none other than Adobe. In your page we have the option of downloading a photographic file and it returns it to us in pdf format, automatically.

adobe acrobat

All the online functions of the Adobe Acrobat page

yes, we we must create a free account from Adobe to be able to download the resulting file. Thus we will have access to all the functions of the Adobe Acrobat online page. Among them, the possibility of joining several pdfs to generate a single one, for example.

And if we simply want to do it from our mobile phone, the easiest thing to do is to install Google Photos, select the photograph in question, click on the three dots and choose the Save as pdf option. It is fast and automatic. Although again, without any choice. If you have to do it from time to time, it is your best option.

In Xataka| ‘Photoshop doesn’t work miracles, but it can help you improve a blurry photo: a step-by-step guide’

One of the strangest questions I’ve been asked in the past is how to convert a photo to PDF format.…

One of the strangest questions I’ve been asked in the past is how to convert a photo to PDF format.…

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