I need a trick to create a Raw image!

I am selling digital printables and one image needs to be sold in various sizes. I wanted to use my images from Italy which are 2-3 MB but those aren’t big enough. I’m looking for a work around. For instance, my new iPhone 14 takes pictures ‘in the raw’ so I thought maybe I could snap a picture in the raw of my existing image inside my iPhone - but I don’t think it does that? Or…wondering if Photoshop could maybe save something in the raw? I’m sure everyone is going to rush to say I can’t do that, but if there is a way…please let me know. Thanks!

Your assumptions of how things work are a little skewed. I’ll try to explain.

RAW is a format (of sorts) that takes full advantage of a camera’s ability to record what it sees — even the things the human eye can’t pick up, such as the full dynamic range between shadows and highlight. RAW also doesn’t use an image-compromising lossy compression algorithm, such as jpeg, to make the images smaller. This complete set of image data enables the photographer to subsequently edit the image and adjust the imagery in ways that wouldn’t be possible without that data — for example, lightening up and pulling detail out of a deep shadow.

Yes, it’s possible to shoot a RAW photo of a compressed photo, as you proposed, but doing so is pointless since the camera will only capture what it sees; it won’t magically add the missing data back into the photo you shoot of the other photo. Once a RAW photo is converted to another format, it’s not possible to put the lost information back into the photo. That would require a magic trick or some ultra-advanced AI algorithm approximation that doesn’t exist yet.

I suspect you’re also a bit confused about RAW as opposed to image resolution, compression, and file size.

The 2–3 MB images of your trip to Italy were likely compressed to JPEG format by the camera. JPEG doesn’t reduce the resolution of the image, but it does reduce the detail in the image to make the file smaller. The amount of JPEG compression applied to the image by the camera determines how much image data is lost in the compression.

Resolution equates to the number of pixels in your image. To print a large photo, you need lots of pixels The number of pixels captured by a camera is a fixed quantity determined by the camera’s hardware Cameras capable of capturing more pixels worth of information are more expensive than the number of pixels captured by less-expensive or older cameras.

The problem you’re running into with creating large printables isn’t related to RAW format. The problem you’re facing is due to the camera you used not shooting the photos in a high-enough resolution (number of pixels). In addition, the JPEG compression the camera applied likely degraded the image quality in a way that becomes apparent when you print the photos at large sizes.

Unfortunately, short of buying a more expensive camera that shoots photos at a higher resolution, then heading back to Italy to reshoot the photos at that higher resolution (ideally in RAW), you’re sort of stuck. The only other alternative is to use something like Photoshop to enlarge the photos to a higher-pixel count, but that will result in larger photos that are blurry. I wish I had better news.

Wow! You just taught me a lot there. Thank you for taking the time to explain. Looks like I will be pulling out the oil paints to recreate (although it will take me forever!) since I won’t be going back to Italy any time soon! At least I’ll have something physical to take in the raw with a better camera. Thanks again for your help!

If you plan on photographing your oil paintings, use a heavy gesso to make a smooth canvas. Photographing art on canvas is a trick, and the lighting will kill you if the canvas has a heavy texture. Plus sometimes, even though you can’t see them in the real art, once enlarged you may be spending hours attending to little white “holes” in the paint (along with blowing up that texture so it looks like a grid pattern.)

PrintDriver you are so right! I just got took a million images of my oil paintings just trying to get one without the glare! It is a little nerve wracking in that a small white hole, fiber or brush hair can ruin the aesthetic. But once it’s cleaned up, it will be worth it. Thanks (again) for your advice. I appreciate it!