With the release of our Online Mosaic Tool, we gave the users a sizable amount of power when creating their own photo mosaics. But as we all know: with great power comes great responsibility! True photo mosaic design isn’t something that just happens. It requires plenty of practice and a keen attention to detail. Throughout the years, we’ve seen a number of mosaic shortcuts that result in cheap, false photo mosaics. A number of factors go into the process of creating a mosaic, but I’m going to focus on the top three DON’Ts of photo mosaic design.
Too Much Colorization
Avoid colorization! Sure, a highly colorized photo mosaic looks nice and smooth from a distance. But upon closer examination, you’ll see that heavy colorization simply does not pay off. Superimposing the source image will wash out the cell photos, leaving them faded at best and completely unrecognizable at worst. Take a look at the examples below, with and without colorization:
Low Photo Count
Getting ready to make your photo mosaic? How many unique photos do you have? Less than 150?! Time to start digging! Insufficient variety of cell photos can require boosted colorization, which can compromise the overall photo mosaic (see above!). A great photo mosaic relies heavily on a diverse set of cell photos to fully capture the clarity of your source image. This brings us to our next DON’T:
Complex Source Images
This might be the most common mistake, simply due to the fact that choosing a source image is the first step when creating your photo mosaic. Stay away from group shots or objects at a far distance. Try to keep your source image very simple; close-up photos of faces and simple silhouettes work well. Simple logos and large text can create pretty interesting photo mosaics as well. If you want to include people, make sure the photo is cropped tightly into their faces if you want to achieve any facial recognition.