Definition: (1) To use part of an image -- i.e. not the entire image -- for one or more of the following purposes (a) improving composition (b) fitting image to fit space in publication (c) fitting image to broadcast format (d) squaring up image to correct horizon or vertical axis. (2) To scan only that part of an image that is required: this reduces the resulting file size from what it would be and can reduce the scanning time. * The crop is set after the initial or pre-scan.
Some photographers abhor a crop and may go so far as printing blank negative around image to prove it. This is a bit silly as all cameras - even large-format and certainly viewfinder cameras - crop the image a bit, so what you see is less than what you get. But the resulting image could then easily be cropped by the slide mount or, indeed, the negative carrier.
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