For Members

Photo courtesy ASMP member Andy Batt

Digital Photography Guide

The Digital Photography Guide, previously The Universal Photographic Digital Imaging Guidelines (UPDIG), was first published in 2005 to help bridge the knowledge gap between analog film and digital capture. Workflows were being upended and a set of simple guidelines were urgently needed. Since that time, digital has taken over for all but a tiny fraction of the professional photography industry—old methods never entirely go away, of course.

Today, the digital learning curve has mostly been surmounted. Huge advances have been made in sensors, software, monitor and television design, and printing reproduction. While the original, urgent need for guidance has subsided, a set of simple guidelines forming a basic knowledge base is still valuable. As thousands of individuals enter the photographic profession every year, it is helpful to have this touchstone.

Main Principles

  • Digital images should look the same as they transfer between devices, platforms, and vendors.
  • Digital images should be prepared in the correct resolution, size and sharpness, for the device(s) on which they are viewed or printed.
  • EXIF, IPTC, IPTC Core Schema, and PLUS are the current standards for embedding metadata in image files. Embedded metadata should include creator and copyright information, as well as searchable keywords and license information. Including useful and relevant information in metadata adds value to an image.
  • Digital images should be protected from accidental erasure or corruption and stored carefully to ensure their availability for future generations.

To download The Digital Photography Guide, click on the button below.