Break winter blues with Valentine’s photo projects

Valentine’s Day comes just in the nick of time for me. Winter is starting to drag on with snow and endless cold. Right when I’m ready to throw in the towel, Valentine’s Day arrives with hearts and pinks and reds and chocolate.

We have some really cute projects in the Tips and Project Center where you can use photos to make Valentine’s Day gifts and decorations.

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A photo can brighten up the usual little bag of candy for the classroom exchange. The mini-prints at Kodak Picture Kiosk are perfect for this because you can print two photos on one 4×6 and fold it over the treat bag, then staple. You could even rotate the top image so it is right side up when you fold, but I didn’t think of that when I was making this sample. (Live and learn)

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This heart photo bookmark is not only easy to make but it’s quite useful too. Who wouldn’t like to see their favorite little face everytime they crack their novel open?

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Add some candy hearts to a vase with a photo and you have an colorful centerpiece for your dinner table or Valentine’s Day mantelscape.

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Save a few of those candy hearts and add them to a shadow box for a seasonal display.

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You could make this as a gift or for yourself. Match a map of your hometown, next to a map of your sweetie’s hometown and cut into a heart shape. Mount it in a frame with a heart shaped photo of the lovebirds on top. It’s putting your love on the map!

Valentine Heart Photos

Create a 3D effect by mounting photos cut out as hearts on a blank matt with mounting tape so they “pop” out.

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Place glass over a favorite photo in a frame and you can fill-in-the-blank with a white board marker and update it as the mood strikes you.

Valentine Foot Print

Wee footprints with a baby photo will melt Grandparent’s hearts or complement a nursery.

Hopefully these ideas will inspire you to celebrate Valentine’s Day with lots of photos and love!

You can make prints for these projects at Kodak Picture Kiosk – especially if you are in hurry – walk out of the store with the photos in your hand.

You can also use the My Kodak Moments app to print the photos on your phone either at the Kiosk or have them shipped to your home.

Pin to Win for Valentine’s Day

I love Pinterest! It’s my go-to spot for recipes, decoration ideas, crafting inspiration and more. Data shows that the average Pinterest user spends about 15 minutes on the site per visit.

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If you are going to be on Pinterest, why not pin something that might win you a prize?

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By pinning one of our ideas for a unique Valentine’s Day card, you can be entered for a chance to win a Bonnie Marcus gift package worth $100!

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So while you are on Pinterest looking for cute Valentine’s cupcakes or mantelscapes, why not enter the KODAK MOMENTS & BONNIE MARCUS Pin to Win Valentines’ Sweeps?

You can follow our boards on Pinterest here.

And enter the Sweepstakes here.

Guest blogger: Pro Photographer Elisa Bricker

“Film allows me to book more and spend less time at my desk!” – Elisa Bricker

Elisa Bricker

Elisa Bricker

Most photographers I know didn’t get into our field because they love spending time in the office. When I talk with other photographers, they share their love of people and stories, of documenting and sharing their work – not their love of editing! I share my love of film because I want more photographers to know how inviting the process is. I want to share how I was able to leave my desk to shoot more, without needing to reinvent my business.

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When I started photographing my clients using a digital camera, it was easy to over commit. My workweek was a mix of business tasks and hours spent at my desk culling and editing digital images. I loved the work I was doing, but I needed a better process, and I wanted to spend more time doing the work that really mattered to me – shooting!

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Film photography is an invitation to create with your subject. It’s an opportunity for thoughtful and intentional creativity, and it’s a way to streamline your workflow. The move back to film was an obvious one for me. It allowed me to book more work because I was spending less time at my desk. It freed my schedule for more personal projects, and simplified my week – meaning I had more time and energy for my clients and our work together.

To start 2015 we have an exciting opportunity to share our work, our lives and our love of film. We’ll be at Imaging USA, in the Kodak Alaris booth (#726). I’ll be in the booth twice: once on Sunday, February 1 at 2 pm and again on Monday afternoon at 1 pm. I’m looking forward to seeing you there.

If you can’t make it to the Kodak Alaris booth, then Edward and I (my husband and owner of Contax Rental www.contaxrental.com) are teaching a workshop in France.

This workshop is designed specifically for film photographers because we recognize both the allure of film photography and how intimidating it can be to try shooting on film without training. Learning film on your own can be a tedious and frustrating experience. Learning to use film with others is a liberating one.

For more information about our upcoming workshop in France this coming fall visit: http://elisabricker.com/workshop/

I cannot wait to meet you at ImagingUSA.

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Reach your 2015 goals with the help of photos

Statistics show that just 8% of the people who make New Year’s resolutions achieve them. 40% of Americans make resolutions, but keeping them is the challenge. Here are some ways that photos can help you keep your resolutions, as visual reminders and more.

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Create a photo calendar for 2015 and each month feature a photo of the goal you want to meet as a reminder and inspiration. Want to run a marathon? Use a photo of yourself running a race from the past year. Trying to cook at home more? Use a picture of a great meal you cooked in the past year.

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Trying to remember all the birthdays of friends and family this year? Even if it is just to send them a card or call them, a birthday calendar can help. Each month, use photos of people who have a birthday in that month as a reminder. It’s easy to make photo calendars at Kodak Picture Kiosk. Find one near you.

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Have you been promising yourself to do something with all the pictures you take? Don’t let them be forgotten on your computer hard drive or phone camera roll. Make a family yearbook (aka photo book) with your photos from the past year. Then make one each year after that. You can make photo books right on your tablet with the Kodak Moments HD app, download here.

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Planning to stay in touch with friends and family in the coming year is a great resolution. Photo cards make it easy to send a quick message with a picture that will make them smile and let them know you are thinking of them. You can make photo cards right on your phone using the My Kodak Moments app – download it here.

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Getting organized is probably one of the biggest New Year’s resolutions out there. If you have a box of prints that you have been meaning to do something with, the Kodak Rapid Print Scanner can help. You can digitize your prints, even memorabilia and art work, at a Kodak Picture Kiosk with a Rapid Print Scanner. Find a Kodak Picture Kiosk with a Kodak Rapid Print Scanner using this store locator.

So Much More Than Survival: Achieving Sustainability in Professional Photography

Guest blog post from Tim Kelly, M,Photog., IE, Cr., Fellow-ASP

I love the art and business of photography.

Photography was and still is “magical”. Running a business was, is and always will be a challenge. The rewards are both personal and professional, and often extraordinary for those who are serious and diligent.

The digital revolution took its toll on many of us and many studios could not survive because they didn’t adapt quickly enough. I began experimenting with digital a full decade before it really hit our profession even though I was told that digital would never be good enough for anything serious. It was so expensive! Because I wanted my business to have a future, I was willing to work, experiment and invest. Still, there are things I don’t love about digital, but it is the language of our industry, and for the most part, we must accept it.

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I say this as a film lover – understanding that many reading this may have never known the excitement and wonder of what can be created on film.

If you’re in Photography now, you’re likely shooting digital and 97% likely to be using a lab to print your orders. This has been one of the industry’s biggest changes and challenges in the last twenty years.

While most don’t print themselves, it’s imperative that the digital photographer understand profiles, color space, and the importance of calibration to produce a decent file for the lab to print. Serious photographers need to stay current with the latest techniques for shooting and handling image files so that we get the best images possible from digital capture. ‘

I’ve been a Kodak Mentor for more than twenty-five years and I’ve witnessed the positive effect that companies who train and educate can have. Largely speaking, our vendors want you to succeed and Kodak Alaris is providing products and software systems that help you get the most for your clients and from your lab. Take advantage of the support they have to offer.

Being the photographer is just one of the hats you wear. If you own your business, a lot more responsibility comes your way and good business practices and policies are just the start. You’ll need to work towards mastering sales and marketing too, another necessary cog in the machine. You’ll need to be the visionary for your company, bringing in new products and services, motivating clients and employees.

I’ve always felt there is a balance between what needs to be done now, and what I want to do next. Everyone’s list is different, but real growth comes from the extra hours you put in proof of the passion that you have for your craft. I hope that if your camera work needs improving, or your retouching skills need work, you’ll put that ahead of buying new studio lights. If your studio lighting or posing could be better, you won’t jump into digital painting just yet. I also hope that you go above and beyond for your clients, always bringing them your very best work. Bring new services and products forward once they are fully tested – once you’ve proven that they work – and when you have your pricing, delivery, and all your other ducks in a row. It’s good for you and good for our industry.

This is a fantastic business, as individual and unique as you want it to be. Take the time to develop as an artist and as a businessperson. Change is constant, adaptability is a must and enthusiasm is the fuel! Photography is equal parts art and science and disregarding either is a mistake.

As a Professional Photographer, I’m always looking for new ideas, things to get excited about, and that’s why I’ve started producing large format film portraits again. This format challenges me, and revisiting film, large format film in particular reminds me why I’m in this business. Learning and growing helps sharpen my skills so I can continue to offer new and fresh ideas to my clients.

In fact, I’d love to get your feedback, meet you and talk about the future of film and digital capture. I’ll be making a special appearance at PPA’s ImagingUSA 2015 in Nashville, and Amherst Publishing will be releasing my new book on B&W portraiture there. I’ll also be sharing ideas from my new book at the Kodak Alaris booth #726.

This is an invitation. Come on by – Kodak Alaris #726.

– Tim Kelly, M,Photog., IE, Cr., Fellow-ASP
timkellyportraits.com

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My Kodak Moments Holiday Twitter Chat & Giveaway

Join us from 9pm to 10pm EST, Monday, December 1st for a Twitter Chat about the holidays, photo inspiration and photo gift ideas! Learn more about the current holiday photo contest where you can win $100 worth of cards made on the My Kodak Moments App and the 10 free prints offer.

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We will have tips on how to use photos for holiday decorating, gift giving and memory making. Joining us for the fun will be @EnlistMoms, @BarbLikos, @StacieinAtlanta. Also, stationery designer, Bonnie Marcus @bonniemarcus will be joining in the chat too so you can ask her how to create a holiday card this year that will make the best spot on everyone’s mantel.

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We will also be giving away three fabulous Holiday Gift Baskets during the Twitter Chat! Valued at $100 they have everything a you need to display your favorite photos and cards for the holidays, plus a couple other items to spread cheer! Win it for yourself or surprise someone else with it!

To join the chat just follow @KodakCB, @EnlistMoms, @BarbLikos, @StacieinAtlantaand the hashtag #MKMholiday from 9 to 10 pm Monday night. Hope to “tweet” you there!

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Kodak Alaris Holiday Gift Basket Twitter Sweepstakes

OFFICIAL RULES – NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN.

1. ELIGIBILITY: The Kodak Alaris Holiday Gift Basket Twitter Sweepstakes (“Sweepstakes”) is only open to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia (excluding Puerto Rico), age 18 or older at the time of entry. Void in Puerto Rico and where prohibited by law. Employees and members of their immediate families and households of Kodak Alaris (“Sponsor”), its subsidiaries, affiliated companies, advertising and promotion agencies, electronic media firm, and anyone involved in the production, development or handling of this Sweepstakes are not eligible. All federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply.

2. TIMING: Sweepstakes begins at 9:00 p.m. on 12/01/14 and ends at 10:00 p.m. on 12/01/14 (“Sweepstakes Period”). All times are Eastern Time or “ET.” Sponsor’s computer is the official time-keeping device for Sweepstakes. Limit of one (1) entry per person or email address per day. A day for the purposes of this Sweepstakes begins at 12:00 a.m. and ends at 12:00 p.m.

3. HOW TO ENTER: Sign into your Twitter account at http://www.Twitter.com (“Sweepstakes Website”). You must have a Twitter account in order to participate; there is no fee to open an account. Your participation on Twitter must comply with the Terms of Service posted on the website. This Sweepstakes is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Twitter. If you choose to enter via a mobile phone, standard message and data rates may apply and entrants should contact their wireless provider for pricing plan details.

4. STEPS TO ENTER: Entries generated by script, macro or other automated or mechanical means will be void. Any attempt by any participant to submit more than the stated number of entries by using multiple or different email addresses, identities, registrations and logins, or any other methods will void that participant’s entries and that participant may be disqualified. The collection of entry registration information by Sponsor is subject to its privacy policy found at http://www.kodak.com/ek/US/en/Privacy_Policy.htm. By participating in the Sweepstakes, entrants agree that Sponsor shall have the right to use all personal information provided to Sponsor in accordance with the Privacy Policy posted on the Sweepstakes Website. 3. PRIZE and Approximate Retail Value or “ARV”: a Holiday Gift Basket ($100.00 ARV). Any expenses not mentioned above are the winner’s responsibility. Taxes are the winner’s responsibility. Prize is not transferable or redeemable for cash. No substitution for prize except as may be necessary due to unavailability, in which case a prize of equal or greater value will be awarded, at the Sponsor’s sole discretion. Odds of winning the prize depends upon the number of entries received. 4. WINNER will be selected in a random drawing to be conducted on or about 12/01/14 by Sponsor whose decisions are final on all matters relating to the Sweepstakes. Winner will be notified via Direct Message on Twitter to the account provided at the time of entry within three (3) days following the random drawing. Then the winner will be required to complete a Prize Acceptance/Address Verification Form, which must be returned within seven (7) days of the date on the notification or an alternate winner will be selected. Any prize notification or prize returned as undeliverable will be awarded to an alternate winner.

5. GENERAL TERMS: Sweepstakes entrants agree to be bound by these Official Rules. Prize acceptance constitutes permission (except where prohibited) to use winner’s name and likeness for publicity purposes without additional compensation. Participants, by participating in this Sweepstakes, hereby waive and release, and agree to hold harmless the Sponsor, its subsidiaries, affiliates, advertising and promotion agencies, electronic media firm, Twitter Inc. (“Twitter”), and all of their respective officers, directors, employees, representatives and agents, from and against, any and all rights, claims and causes of action whatsoever that they may have, or which may arise, against any of them for any liability for any matter, cause of thing whatsoever, including but not limited to any injury, loss, damage, whether direct, compensatory, incidental or consequential, to person, including death and property, arising in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from their acceptance, possession, use or misuse of, or inability to use a prize in the Sweepstakes, or their participation in the Sweepstakes, or their participation in any Sweepstakes or prize related activity. Sponsor and its agents are not responsible for lost, late, misdirected, damaged, incomplete or illegible entries or Internet technical, hardware, software, telephone, or transmission failures of any kind, which may limit a person’s ability to enter the Sweepstakes. Sponsor and its agents are not responsible for any injury or damage to Sweepstakes entrants’ or any other person’s computer related to or resulting from entering or downloading any materials in the Sweepstakes. Sponsor reserves the right to cancel or suspend advertising the Sweepstakes on the Internet should a computer virus, unauthorized intervention or other cause corrupt the integrity or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any Sweepstakes entrant found to be disrupting the operation of the Sweepstakes or its web site. If the integrity of the Internet portion of the Sweepstakes is compromised in any manner, Sponsor reserves the right to modify Sweepstakes and randomly select a winner from valid entries received that are unaffected by the problem. In the event of a dispute as to the identity of any online Sweepstakes entrant, Sweepstakes entrant will be deemed the individual named on the online entry. All submissions become property of the Sponsor and will not be returned. All issues and questions concerning these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of the Sweepstakes entrant and Sponsor in connection with the Sweepstakes, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of New York State, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules (whether of New York State or any other jurisdiction), which would cause the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than New York State.

6. WINNERS LIST: For a winners list, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Kodak Alaris Inc. 2400 Mount Read Blvd., Rochester, NY 1461

7. SPONSOR: Kodak Alaris Inc., 2400 Mount Read Blvd.; Rochester, NY 1461

My Holiday Motto

This year my holiday season motto will be Plan Ahead. Well, really, my holiday motto will be Peace, Joy and Goodwill towards Men, but my holiday preparedness motto will be Plan Ahead. We all know how crazy it can get during this time.

There’s so much to do in December—shopping, wrapping, baking, decorating… you know the drill. Last year, I tried a different motto: Simplify. I didn’t bake, culled my Santa collection, putting fewer on display, and cut back on the decorations. Turns out, I don’t like to simplify. I missed my Santas and wished I had put up the time-consuming decoration on the dining room light fixture.

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This year I’m hoping Plan Ahead will let me do all the things I want to do for the holidays without the stress and craziness of cramming it all into a few weeks. I have to admit that it goes against my nature to start Christmas too early. It kind of drives me crazy to see Christmas lights on the day after Halloween. And Thanksgiving always gets short-changed. But I figure that as long as I keep my early work under wraps until December, it’s acceptable. No one has to know that I’m doing my Christmas cards in early November since I won’t mail them out until December.

So this week I’m doing my Christmas cards. I’ve already selected the pictures of the boys I’ll use and have started looking through the card designs available. I’m going to use the My KODAK MOMENTS App on my smartphone to create my cards. The pictures I want to use are already in my photo stream and the convenience of using my smartphone can’t be beat. Standing in line at the grocery store, waiting for the kids to finish sports practice, a few zone out minutes with my smartphone at the end of the day—all perfect times to open up the App and check out the card designs. What will it be—trendy chalkboard, vintage appeal, whimsical polka dots or traditional cheer. There are literally hundreds to choose from!

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We make it quick and easy to make your holiday cards and other photo products. There are a variety of convenient options from which to choose. Walk into a store and use the KODAK Picture Kiosk or try the KODAK MOMENTS Apps on your smartphone or tablet wherever you are, to create photo gifts which you can pick up on your way home from work or have delivered right to your house.

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Another benefit of planning ahead—I can take advantage of the great discount being offered until November 15th: 33% off all premium photo products. While I’m getting the jump on my holiday cards, I should probably also get my act together and do the annual photo books and calendars (also on sale!) for the Grandmas too!

(And for those of you who choose to go with a different motto this holiday season, we also offer New Year’s cards!)