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  • Writer's pictureBiv Jones

What Are Image Ratios?

Quick Guide to Image Ratios

First thing’s first, what is an ‘Image Ratio’?

An image ratio (also called ‘aspect ratio’) describes the shape and orientation of an image. It is shown as two numbers, which describe the proportion between the width and height of an image.

For example, a square image would be 1:1 (equal width and height).A landscape image has a longer width and shorter height, so the first number would be larger than the second.Whereas a portrait image has a shorter width and longer height, so the first number would be smaller than the second.

Before starting any photography shoot, it’s important to know which image ratio you would like your photographer to shoot in, as it will determine how the photo is composed.This could be important for both technical and aesthetic reasons.

If your photographer shoots in a portrait image ratio, it would be very difficult to try to fit that image into a landscape frame.


What Are Image Ratios

So what are the most common image ratios?

Let’s have a look at the four most common image ratios:

1:1This is a square shaped image, with equal width and height.Commonly used on Instagram or Amazon listings.

4:5This is a common image ratio with a portrait orientation.Often used for Instagram images with a vertical/portrait ratio.

16:9This is a long landscape or rectangle ratio.You would use this for widescreen formats, such as a YouTube videos.

9:16This is a long portrait or vertical rectangle ratio.Most commonly used for Instagram Stories, Reels or TikTok videos.


While there are more to choose from, these four will cover almost any situation.And as always, if in doubt, just ask!


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