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Archive for December, 2008

How Are You Going To Save Your Holiday Photos?

Holiday ScrapbookThe Holidays are now over. Your fridge is filled with leftovers, the wrapping paper that littered your house is all picked up, and you can finally breathe a sigh of relief that everything went off without a hitch. However, with the holidays ‘wrapping up’, there is a new project left that you must attend to – organizing all those holiday photos!

Don’t fret, this project can be done from the warm comfort of your own home, and doesn’t require you to venture into the centers of consumer madness that you’ve come to hate during these past few hectic weeks! All you need to do is gather all the Holiday pictures, find a cozy spot in your home to get settled, and get to work. Oh wait! You’re going to need Photo Albums, Scrapbooks and Scrapbooking Supplies as well. Here’s a short list of what could be useful when organizing your Holiday memories.

- First you have to find the right organizer. If you have a have a ton of photos, it may be easier to make a Photo Album than try to sort through which ones would be absolutely best for a Scrapbook. Organizing your pictures in a photo album instead of a scrapbook can still produce a uniquely beautiful story – it’s all about arrangement!

- If you go the route of a photo album, you’ll need to find the perfect one to fit your needs. If you want to make a traditional Photo Album with only pictures, you should choose one that will give you enough space to neatly organize your photos without being left with many empty picture sleeves. A little planning goes a long way toward a full and clean-looking album!

- If you’re planning to make a Scrapbook, you will be looking at a little more work, but a lot more room for creative input! Start by gathering as much holiday flare, ribbons, wrapping paper scraps, cards, etc, as possible and choose a layout that would best display your holiday photos. Each photo should have a theme all to itself. So if you have a picture of your child opening a gift, include on the page a piece of wrapping paper or bow from the gift in the photo. Do this with each page and your scrapbook will be a hit!

Now that you’ve finished this little project, you can kick back and relax. Until you begin New Year’s Eve preparations!

Five Landscape Photography Tips

Landscape PhotographyIf you’re lucky enough to get a new camera from Santa this holiday season, you can be sure that on the first nice day, you’ll be out and about taking photos of your favorite winter landscapes. Before you go out shooting, here are a five landscape photography tips to help you get the best shots. Enjoy!

Tip #1 – Putting the Focus in the Foreground
A foreground object will help to frame the scene and add a look of three-dimensionality. Select an object in the foreground (or front) of your scene and frame it so that it becomes the center of interest. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s in the center of the picture (think Rule of Thirds), but just make sure you have the focus on a single object. This draws in the viewer’s eye and makes in interesting.

Tip #2 – All about Lighting
Interesting lighting that is moody, dramatic or diffused usually pays off in a memorable photograph. Knowing the types of light present during different times of the day can help simplify your landscape shooting process. Check out times for sunrise and sunset, because often, these two times offer the most dynamic of light scapes.

Tip #3 – Using Flash
Ensure that your camera’s flash is turned off when shooting landscapes, unless you require it to brighten a foreground object. Flash in a dusty, misty or foggy scene may cause flare by reflecting off the droplets of moisture or dust particles.

Tip #4 – Capturing the Elements
When the wind is blowing or water is moving, capturing that movement by using a slow shutter speed to create blur can add great interest to a landscape. When selecting a slow shutter speed, be sure you retain proper exposure by adjusting your camera’s aperture. Many cameras will do this automatically for you in a shutter priority mode. More advanced techniques will require use of the manual mode. Look in your viewing screen to get a better idea of how the shot will look.

Tip #5 – Storage
For storing your landscape photos, be sure to choose an album that offers archival quality. StorePhotos.com has a very large selection of Photo Albums to choose from, giving you the flexibility you need to store your favorite prints.

Secret Santa Gifts for Your Office

This year, you don’t have to dread the Secret Santa exchange at work. Here are a few ideas that can make gift giving at the office easy, inexpensive, and enjoyable this holiday season:

Everybody Loves A Treat

Put simply, who doesn’t love food? Cooking or baking something for your gift exchange could be the perfect way to solve your holiday giving woes. However, before you run off to the kitchen, make sure the person that you are giving to doesn’t have any specific food allergies. This may take some detective work, but in the end, it’ll be worth it. Don’t have any time to bake? Try getting them a gift basket or a restaurant gift certificate.

Make Those Memories Last

Photo Albums and picture frames make for fantastic gifts, especially for people who have children. This holiday season, try looking at StorePhotos.com for some great Secret Santa gifts that your co-workers will love. From photo storage boxes to scrapbooks and scrapbooking supplies, StorePhotos.com has everything you need to shop for someone who enjoys capturing his or her favorite memories.

Bring a Little Green to the Office

Small houseplants are an ideal choice for Secret Santa exchanges. Besides being an appealing gift, house plants also add to the overall beauty and décor of your office space – a welcome change during the barren, cold winter season. Try to choose hardy plants like cacti, rubber tree plants, or lucky bamboo stalks that don’t require a whole lot of care.

Winter Wonderlands

Winter photography can be incredibly beautiful, even when the weather outside is frightful. If you’re a photographer, or just someone who enjoys taking pictures now and then, consider cataloging your winter photography in a special Photo Album. Not only can this act as a portfolio of your work, it’s also a way for you to share your work with others. Here are a few tips on taking beautiful winter pictures:

Exposure

When doing an outdoor winter shot, your camera will tend to think that the scene is too bright, and may want you to adjust to exposure, which can make the snow seem grey or a different shade of white. Instead, try adjusting your F-stop and taking different shots. When you put them on your computer or take them to be printed, you can decide which stop works best with your camera for taking winter scenes. On my camera, I keep my F-stop for winter shots on a +1.

Keeping Warm

This may sound like a no-brainer, but it is important to keep warm while doing outdoor photography! In addition, make sure you bring a camera bag or other protective gear for your camera. This can prevent your camera or other equipment from getting wet as it snows.

Let There Be Life!

Batteries are the life support system of your camera. During cold weather, batteries will drain much more quickly, making for less camera time. Be sure to throw extra sets of batteries into your bag before heading out.

Be Creative

In all things, this is paramount. When taking winter photography, be creative! Use different angles or modes to capture various frames. Remember, it’s not so bad if you take 150 photos! Most professionals will take hundreds of shots only to keep a handful of exceptional ones. It’s all about trial and error. Take a chance and play around with different shots while you’re outside.