Preparing images for SppDb

One of the key ideas behind SppDb is that it is used to store images of plant species that will be specified in landscape design work. If the image has been adjusted to the correct size ready for incorporation into CAD drawings and the local path to the image has been stored in SppDb, it is a simple matter to quickly insert images into CAD drawings to illustrate planting ideas.

If you double click on the image in an SppDb record, the image will open in the currently configured image editor. We use and recommend IrfanView as our image editor as it is a high-quality shareware product.

Here are the recommended steps to clean up an image.

Tip: These notes refer to images that you have taken yourself, not those ‘borrowed’ from the Internet.

1. Adjust image size

We recommend that you use an image editor such as IrfanView to adjust the image size to a maximum of 800 pixels wide – that will produce an easily managed image file of an appropriate resolution, even for printing onto A1 size sheets.

2. Adjust color balance

IrfanView has a tool to automate this step.

3. Add species name and your landscape practice details

It is a good idea to add the species name to the image. We like to do this over a block of color that matches our corporate color as shown below. The IrfanView plugin is most useful in this regard. Using our corporate font, we also like to add the name of our landscape design practice to the image. That helps brand our work and prevents others from using our hard-won images. An example is shown below.

The figure below shows IrfanView in use adding a solid paint section to the bottom of an image, in readiness to add some text.