With the amount of sizes and customizations available in photo printing, selecting the "right" print size can be a bit confusing. We are all very well familiar with sizes such as 8x10, or 5x7, as these have been standard picture frame sizes for a very long time.
Now, with so many different ways of creating images, there really isn't a standard ratio, and the old sizes we are all familiar with cause sizing issues, and quite frankly are very outdated when shooting with modern devices.
As photographers, many of us are very selective, and quite careful when it comes to composing our shots, and do not always allow extra space around the edges to be cropped out.
As you can see in this photo, I wanted to fill the frame with the scenery. I did not allow, or want to allow room for cropping this image.
For example, at its native file size of 8x12", any change to this to try to cram it into a ready made frame severely cuts into the image at the top, and changes the shot significantly. The dark area is what would be lost.
So now what commonly happens, is people are so familiar with 8x10 sizes, that they will want to order it as an 8x10 print when in fact the actual size is 8x12", and you can see the loss from fitting it down to 8x10".
So here are some of the sizes you're most likely going to want to use, IF you do not want your images to be cropped:
If you're shooting with a DSLR camera:
4x6 | 8x12 | 10x15 | 12x18 | 16x24 | 20x30 | 24x36 | 32x48 | 36x54 | 40x60
If you're shooting with an Iphone, micro 4/3, and most compact cameras (4:3 ratio)
12x16 | 18x24 | 24x32 | 30x40 | 36x48
Old standard sizes, and some pre-made canvas on artwork:
5x7 | 8x10 | 11x14 | 16x20 | 20x24 | 24x36
Panoramic, square, etc, are typically considered custom sizes, and will require cropping in editing to achieve this.
So as you can see, if you're shooting with a DSLR, the standard sizes clash unless you want your image cut off on the sides, or top and bottom.
We always have a second set of eyes on this to double check everything once ordered, and for small standard photo prints (5x7") we correct the sizing, and for all larger sizes, if anything is off even a little with the sizing, we will let you know before proceeding and give you visual options from there. We typically won't even charge if the adjustment is minor.