Thu 16 Jan 2014

Take More Pictures: New Year’s Resolutions

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resolve to take more photos

Continuing our series of New Year’s Resolutions from the previous Get In Shape article, Take More Pictures is next. Most people enjoy looking at pics on Facebook, Picasa (or other preferred photo viewing option) and reliving some great memories. As much as I enjoy doing this, I often wish I’d taken more pictures during trips, events, and especially everyday pics.

Here are some reasons I didn’t take more pictures throughout the year and the possible solutions. Maybe you can relate?

Problem: Wrong camera
If you’re bummed about how your camera is too slow, too bulky, poor-quality pics, not enough features, low battery life, etc., then a camera upgrade is going to be a weight off your shoulders. How do you know which camera is for you? Common sense wisdom: evaluate what your needs are and choose the best camera for you. Read the specifications and other people’s reviews and pay attention to their details (e.g. Did it capture good in low light? Quick to boot up? Easy to navigate menu?) Also, start asking your friends about what they do and don’t like about their digital cameras. The Amazon carousel o’ magic below can also help you find the perrrfect camera.

Problem: Don’t get to ENJOY digital photos
Not everyone is computer savvy and can manipulate digital photos into works of art, or simply print one out to frame. You can buy your own printer and photo paper and try it on your computer, or you can visit a web site, upload some pictures and have them delivered to you in many different forms. Some of my favorite ways to enjoy my digital photos are to have them printed out in different formats and displayed around the house to become a part of my everyday life.
- ImageKind: They offer framed prints, canvas, posters, cards, laptop skins, water bottles, and other fun surfaces for your favorite photos.
- Snapfish (first 50 prints FREE!)

Problem: Forgot the camera
Okay, this one’s easy. You always remember to bring your phone with you, right? Make sure your phone has a good camera, so even if you forget to bring your primary camera with you, you have a reliable backup.

Problem: I’m not a good photographer
Yes you are! You just don’t know it yet. I promise, the more you take pictures and flip through them with your favorite software the more you’ll become aware of what looks good and what doesn’t. Besides, the point of the photo is to capture a moment in time, not to see who can take the “best picture”. Believe me, getting an oddly cropped/slightly blurry photo is still better than getting no photo. But if you feel you need some training, you can take a FREE digital photography class online. How easy is that?

For more choices and crazy-awesome digital camera deals be sure to check out eBay!

Now get out there and take some pictures!

New Year’s Resolutions

Photo Credit: Edwin Pijpe

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Mon 17 Dec 2007

Last Minute Gift Idea: Turn Your Digital Photos into Gifts

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Free Shipping on Photo CalendarsJust last night I stood impatiently at the local Target Photo Center to get my digital photo prints and I asked myself “Why aren’t I at home in my comfortable pajamas doing this online? It’s probably cheaper too.” Guess what? It is cheaper, plus if this is your first time ordering, with the right timing, you can get your first 10-20 prints free.

If you’re like us you accumulate some good pictures from your handy digital camera throughout the year. Well now half the work of sending out photos, or creating some quick and easy gifts is already done. With just a handful of pictures you can create a 2008 calendar (the recipient would have to remember your birthday), photo books (great for long distance relatives), mugs, stationary, mouse pads, puzzles, and more. You know, the classic customizable products. All this can be done in a few minutes, resulting in quality gifts getting shipped directly to your gift recipient and you never had to leave the house. Double Gift Score!

Snapfish – Has some great gift options at low prices. They claim to be #1 and you get 20 free prints when you first sign up. FREE upgrade to Expedited Shipping at Snapfish! Select standard shipping upon checkout. (free upgrade valid 12/18 only) – More focused on photo sharing, and organizing, but has just as many options to print photos to gifts. This is a site for the photographer, amateur or pro, it’s a definite crowd pleaser.

Wallhogs – These guys are for your bigger wall covering posters, canvas prints, and vinyl. I’m talking up to 7 feet long removable vinyl wall decorations from one of your awesome photos! That’s a gift!

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Fri 02 Feb 2007

Digital Photo Keychain

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Digital Photo KeychainPhotos make great gifts, photo albums are even better, but neither are as portable as this Digital Photo Keychain. As a gift, I would load it up with all my favorite family photos and send it off to a family member who doesn’t get to visit often.

The Digital Photo Keychain holds over 50 digital photos, displays them on a 1.4″ LCD screen, fits on a keychain and provides 2.5 hours of viewing time on a single charge. Everything you need to transfer your favorite digital photos is included with this special product from Brookstone.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’m thinking this would make a great gift for that special someone if it was loaded with lots of loving memories you’ve shared together in the past. If it’s a newer relationship, why not take suggestive photos of memories you’d like to create in the future. *wink wink*


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Sat 16 Dec 2006

Unlimited Photo Storage & Sharing Online

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Unlimited Photo Storage and SharingImagine if you could upload your favorite digital images to one place online and easily share them with your friends and family. Sure there are a lot of services out there that do this, but SmugMug stands out from the rest; as affirmed in glowing reviews from real users. If you are like us a good chunk of your digital photos are considered priceless and your only copies are on your PC. It’s frightening to even think of what would happen to your images if your hard drive was to crash or your computer was to catch fire. That’s why SmugMug allows unlimited storage and saves 4 copies of your high-res photos in 3 different states. Once uploaded to SmugMug you can sleep well knowing your memories are safe.

Pictures of your family are some of the best gifts long distance family members will get this year. SmugMug also makes it easy to purchase prints of any photo you or your family might choose. When purchasing prints there are options to get the printed on photo paper, mugs, shirts, postcards and more.

Visit SmugMug today for your free trial and see for yourself how easy it really is.

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Wed 19 Jul 2006

Home Photo Studio

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As usual, my day started by perusing a mile long list of blogs and feeds to see what was new and awesome on the interweb. Never one to disappoint, MAKE blog linked an article that explains how to make your own photo studio for less than $100. Although the finished product is impressive, my first reaction was $100? Surely there must be a cheaper way to take professional looking digital pictures for selling items online. OK, I was also trying to picture myself locating the seemingly long list of items necessary at Home Depot & Joann, and getting prematurely bored with the whole idea.

Tabletop Photo StudioAfter a little more searching I found the Tabletop Photo Studio from Hammacher Schlemmer for $79.95. I almost always advocate the DIY method, but when the store-bought alternative is cheaper and easier, I’m sometimes forced to whip out the Paypal card. C’est la vie.

From my barely PC-literate relatives to my dot-com e-commerce buddies, I almost can’t think of anyone in my life who doesn’t sell items online at least every now and then. And since better pictures always equal better sales (and/or higher auction end prices), I’m thinking home photo studio products like this are going to become popular, and would make a very useful gift. Making a more proper photo studio for Mable’s headquarters is on our to-do list this year, but I’m still undecided as to which route we should go. If you have a solution that works well for you, please share in the comments!

UPDATE: MAKE does it again with the $10 DIY Photo Studio!

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