Photo Projects for a Memorable Valentine’s Day

When it comes to crafting and holidays, Valentine’s Day is right up there for me. It’s all hearts and pink and glitter! I got pretty excited when we started working on some photo projects to share this season on the Kodak Tips and Projects Center. We love adding photos to Valentine’s decorations, cards and gifts because it adds a personal touch. Here are some of the fun ideas we came up with…

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My co-worker, Patricia made this adorable frame with an inexpensive frame, a hot glue gun, and real candy hearts. Bonus? It smells delicious!

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This is the world’s tiniest Valentine’s photo project! Mini-prints at Kodak Picture Kiosk are perfect for making this secret message clothespin.

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You can make this cute heart garland with photos and patterned paper for hanging in your house or even embellishing a gift.

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Hand out treats in these photo tubes. Super easy to make.

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This is where the glitter comes in. After you make a card at Kodak Picture Kiosk, make it extra fancy with glue, glitter, sequins or anything else cute you find in the crafting aisle. Right now all cards at Kodak Picture Kiosk are 33% off.

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We have had this project around for awhile but it’s a favorite. After you eat all the chocolate from your heart shaped candy box, turn it into a picture frame!

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Here is something for the photo adventurous. We have instructions for making heart shaped bokeh.

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Do you have kids that are exchanging Valentines at school? You can make photo cards at Kodak Picture Kiosk with their pictures on them. Get creative with the photo to personalize the cards even more. It helps that all cards are now 33% off for Valentine’s Day.

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This is an idea that really pops. Make prints and add a lollipop for a really cute card/gift.

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We have lots of ideas for taking photos that are perfect for making fun cards and photo books in the Tips and Projects Center. I hope these have inspired you to make this Valentine’s Day a memorable one! We had fun coming up with them for you. Any day you get to use a hot glue gun in the office is a good one!

Find a Kodak Picture Kiosk near you.

Film Friday: Film Box: A Lab for Photographers by Photographers

By: Brittany Price

 What defines a successful photographer? Raw talent, experience and an eye for beauty are among the obvious answers, as these skills are essential in the photographic arts. Ryan Bernal and Austin Gros, two Nashville photographers, entrepreneurs and the founders of Film Box, are of the opinion that it takes more than just skill and experience to make it in the photo industry. It takes a family.

The  Film Box Team - shot using Kodak Professional Portra 800 Film

The Film Box Team – shot using Kodak Professional Portra 800 Film

Film Box, a Nashville-based film lab, welcomes photographers and visitors in as part of that family. Situated within a charming, historic blue and white home, this film studio embodies something completely other than your run-of-the-mill, one-hour photo lab. At Film Box, there exists a striking balance between professionalism and comfort. This team provides the highest caliber of photo film processing, while inviting photographers to sit down, have a cup of coffee and engage with a warm community of fellow creatives. The Film Box experience feels like coming home.

Film Box from Film Box on Vimeo.

Image by Austin Grosl© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Image by Austin Gros© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

The vision for Film Box and an innovative, photographic community came from Bernal and Gros’ recognition that they were a part of an artistic circle with no place to go. Bernal explains, “We dreamed up the idea of a place, in Nashville, that brings photographers to one spot. There are a lot of photographers, but there’s no place that brings them together. We want to have this cornerstone of our community where, if you’re a photographer, you know about Film Box and you’re part of something, of what we’re doing.” This studio was created to support and expand the talents of photographers, to act as a backbone and hub for an artistic community.

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Film Box not only develops film, but photographers as well. This begins with their comprehensive ‘Custom Style Profile.’ When a new client walks into Film Box, he or she is asked to provide extensive information about who they are as a photographer: from style and personal taste, to cameras and stocks of film, down to metering and countless other small details. This ‘Custom Style Profile’ enables the Film Box team to begin an ongoing conversation with each individual photographer about his or her body of work, abilities and aspirations. It creates a ‘snapshot’ of the photographer’s professional and personal goals, allowing the knowledgeable Film Box staff to provide feedback and assist the photographer in working towards their dreams.

Image by Austin Grosl© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Image by Austin Gros© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

When a photographer hands a roll of film to the staff at Film Box, those photos are placed in the care of some of Nashville’s most talented, exceptional film specialists. As Bernal and Gros dreamt up Film Box, they spent countless months preparing, processing film, perfecting their abilities and knack for photo developing. Both of the Film Box founders understand film photography because both shoot almost exclusively with film. Bernal has shot and developed film since he was a teenager, rambling about Phoenix with a camera. Gros got a taste of film while shooting weddings and never looked back. Bernal, Gros and their staff are uniquely qualified to provide exactly the type of professional assistance and mentorship that was, prior to Film Box, far too difficult to come by in the photographic community.

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Though Bernal and Gros currently work with a large number of well-established professional photographers, their dream is two-fold: to not only cultivate a thriving photographic community amongst existing photographers, but to also educate and inspire new photographers and the creative community at large to keep the medium of film alive. The Film Box team cannot help but get excited about those who want to make the transition to film. Gros was one of those photographers, as he recounts, “When I first started shooting weddings, I was shooting digital. Film seemed like this big, scary thing. My advice to people who are interested is to just try it. You’ll be surprised how quickly you will be able to make the jump.”

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The Film Box staff believes that film is here to stay. Bernal insists, “People are turning back to film. Not only does opinion support that it often looks better, but photographers are better off training themselves to be film photographers because it trains us to be better.” He believes that all artists are looking to grow and improve. He sees film photography as that next step. Photo printing, educational ‘photo walks’, workshops, maybe even a community darkroom are in the works for Film Lab. This team will do anything to make sure film sticks around.

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 160 Film

Image by Ryan Bernal© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 160 Film

Like any good support system, the Film Box team is there to assist and guide those new to the world of film. They even recommend the essentials, to help new photographers move in the right direction. Both Bernal and Gros are fond of KODAK’s PORTRA 400 film. Gros explains, “The exposure latitude of PORTRA 400 is better than anything else that’s out there right now. For someone who hasn’t shot film before, it gives them the ability to miss a little and still get great results.” He recommends pairing this with the cheapest camera body that works with a photographer’s preexisting digital lens, something along the lines of a Canon EOS 3 or Nikon F100.

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Image by Austin Grosl© shot using Kodak Professional Portra 400 Film

Film Box opened its door to the public in February of 2013 and within a period of a few, short months, word spread across the country about this innovative new venture. Bernal and Gros have created a business “by photographers, for photographers” and the artistic community has leapt to its feet in support. Bernal recognizes that people want to join the film box community because it provides exactly that: a community, “We don’t just process and scan people’s film, we become a part of their team, their photography family, I suppose. They can’t do it without us, and we can’t do it without them.” After all, it takes a family to raise a photographer.

- Brittany Price

CameraAce puts a fresh spin on mobile picture management and sharing

Sometimes the built in mobile camera just isn’t cutting it. When it comes to taking pictures on a mobile device you not only want some technology behind the lens, you want options.

The app market has become so saturated with photography apps that it can be near impossible to find one that will retouch your images just right. Even with so much competition, the company TecAce has produced one of Android’s most popular and highly rated photography apps called CameraAce.

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Since I couldn’t say it any better than the app itself, “CameraAce is a sleek, edgy, and elegant way to create and share impressive slideshows as well as perfect your picture collection.” CameraAce allows you to create photo collections with themes and effects of your choice and you can even share all your moments in a slideshow.

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Also, CameraAce is partnered with Kodak Alaris, which means enhancing your photos and getting prints all happens from the familiarity and comfort of your android device.

You can either take photos and organize them yourself or preselect the theme (gallery) for the photos you are about to take.

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Cool Features:

  • CameraAce offers more filter affects than I’ve ever seen on a photography app. There is even a before and after feature to see the difference between the original picture and the filter you have selected. The app also has a fun horizontal and vertical flip-flop of photos, which creates a mirror image of the original picture
  • There is a large selection of borders that can be added to photos
  • The app has a very professional feel and is easy to use
  • Fully customize each individual theme or gallery the way you want it
  • I found this to be an interesting touch; the app adds music to your slideshows and you also have the option to add your own music
  • Easily create collages with the collage feature. You simply select pictures from your themes (galleries) and it pulls them together in one image for you. You can even add a border or filter afterwards
  • CameraAce is partnered with Kodak Alaris and allows you to professionally print your images at a local Kodak Picture Kiosk.
  • You select the photos you want printed from your galleries and add them to your cart. You can easily crop the photo, select the quantity of prints you want per photo, select the size of your prints and even select a glossy or boarder glossy finish.  The shopping cart’s cost per photo also updates in real time as you adjust the options on your photos.

CameraAce features photo collection with quick and simple organization to help you share your photos. CameraAce is a great photography app that lets you fully customize and personalize your photos the way you want them.

- Noah Wexler

Chatting with Melissa Love for #KodakMoment

Melissa Love Photo

Selfie of Melissa Love

Mother, graphic designer and photographer, Melissa Love was the very first person we featured in our #KodakMoment series in the UK, where we ask people to tell a story in three photographs. Melissa moved from Brighton to the beautiful fishing village of Fowey in Cornwall two years ago and finds that photography provides her with the perfect opportunity to be creative and relax. We caught up with her to ask her what makes her tick…

You can see Melissa’s three #KodakMoment photos below:

Probably the most photos I take are of my kids when they don’t know I’m there. I tuck myself out of the way. They don’t pose – they’re bored of me!

Q: What drives you to take photographs?
A: Once you start seeing something you get into the habit of good composition, and with my graphic design background you see everything with a good frame. I find it very relaxing.

Q: What cameras do you use? Film vs digital?
A: I use both film and digital. I have a digital SLR Canon 5D MK2, and sometimes my smartphone is easily enough for my needs – I have a lot of camera apps on my phone. I’m a big Instagrammer. I like the discipline of using film too, and I also have an old Polaroid camera.

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Melissa’s daughter Grace having fun with the sprinkles during a baking session

Q: What inspires you to get out there and shoot?
A: What doesn’t! I usually get inspired when I’m out somewhere with my kids, taking them to the beach. I also do a lot of street photography – any situation can inspire me. It can be mundane, or it could be a shot of dream weather. I have to consciously not take the camera with me sometimes.

Q: What are your favourite subjects to photograph?
A: Probably the most photos I take are of my kids when they don’t know I’m there. I tuck myself out of the way. They don’t pose – they’re bored of me! They’re used to it, as I’m not up in their faces. Grace is a complete show-off, and Lily doesn’t want to be left out.

Q: Which photographers do you admire and why?
A: Alain Laboile. He takes pictures of his kids – he lives on a muddy farm and his photos are stunning and very different. He has really inspired my work. My favourite photo of all time would be one of his.

Larking about in the rain photo

Grace larking about outdoors during stormy weather

Q: Do you like having your photo taken?
A: I’m trying not to mind it. There’s only one photo of me together with my children, and my new year’s resolution is to ask a photographer to take a photo of all of us together. I love looking back at old photos of my Mum and I want my children to know how I looked at various points in my life, too. You can’t wait forever – you just need to get on with it.

Q: What is your guilty pleasure?
A: I eat lunch at my desk – as I don’t have that much time due to working within school hours, I will be eating a bowl of noodles while working, while being on the phone to a client – sometimes they can hear me slurping.

Q: What would be the first thing you’d rescue in a house fire?
A: After my children, my Mac!

Q: Tell us a secret about yourself.
A: I can make balloon animals, including a sausage dog, a cat and a bird on a swing!

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Grace signalling to a family friend that changing nappies is a smelly business

To see more of Melissa Love’s photos visit: Website www.melissalove.co.uk Twitter @melissarachlove; Instagram @melissalove

Want to get involved with #KodakMoment? If you can tell a great story in three photos, get in touch with us on the UK Facebook page

Get organized with the Kodak Rapid Scanner II

On the list of top10 New Years resolutions, “Getting Organized” is number two. Was it on your list this year?

The end of January is when a lot of people have either given up on their resolutions or they are taking steps to reach their goals. If you had “Getting Organized” on your list here is something you can do and be able to cross something off!

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Gather up all your loose prints and shoeboxes of photos and head to a Kodak Picture Kiosk with a Kodak Rapid Print Scanner II. A Kodak Rapid Print Scanner II can scan your prints and turn them into digital files that you can use create photo products or Archive DVDs.

The Scanners are so easy to use that you can do it without the help of a sales assistant. They are fast too. You can feed the scanner stacks of 20 pictures at a time and it scans FIFTY 4×6 photos in about a MINUTE! You can also be assured that you will get great image clarity and color from the Kodak Rapid Print Scanner II.

Once you have your photos scanned and digitized you can create a photo book that organizes them however you please. An Archive DVD is a good way to store your photos and transfer them to your computer. You could even cross some other items off your to-do list and use your photos to make thank you cards or photo gifts like calendars.

Kodak Picture Kiosk and the Kodak Rapid Print Scanner II can take care of your printed photo collection so quickly it will assist you in the #10 top New Years resolution for 2014… Spend More Time with Family.

Find a Kodak Picture Kiosk with a Kodak Rapid Print Scanner II using this store locator.

Lightbox photography in the NYC subway: Current exhibit at Bowling Green Station

Today’s Film Friday post comes from  Lester Burg – Senior Manager, MTA Arts for Transit and Urban Design

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Lester Burg

 

Lightbox photography in the NYC subway: Current exhibit at Bowling Green Station

Sponsored by Kodak Alaris

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) moves 8.5 million people each day through its subways, buses and commuter rail systems.  Making art a part of the experience is important – it adds a humanizing element, provides an enhancement that is accessible to all, improves the visual environment and sets a tone that the system is cared for and the customers are considered.  Since travel involves moving people efficiently through various spaces, the more we can do to improve that experience, the better the spaces are treated and enjoyed.   Arts for Transit commissions permanent art in stations – and oversees poster, music and poetry programs as well, with the common goal of improving and enhancing the experience of the transit system. Photography is also offered within lightbox displays in stations where there was the space for a series of light box displays and which were rehabilitated in the past ten years.  The light boxes are in places with heavy foot traffic.

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MTA Arts for Transit curates the Lightbox Project, which showcases photography in large-scale in four key locations – Bowling Green, Bryant Park 42nd Street, Grand Central and Atlantic-Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  We try to find photographers whose work will hold the viewer’s interest over repeated viewings, and which has something to say about the neighborhood, the area or the people who use the station.  The program is made possible through the support of sponsors.  For this exhibit, the displays are printed on Kodak Professional Endura Transparency Display material with a local partner, the Prestone Media Group. We are unable to accept unsolicited photography proposals for the Lightbox Project.

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At Bowling Green, more than 25,000 people use the station on a daily basis, and many are international visitors heading to Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty.  Other riders are office workers in Lower Manhattan.  At this location, we try to show a part of New York not often seen, or a way of expressing the City and travel through a photographer’s particular point of view.  People are fascinated by tall buildings and the dramatic way that Navid Baraty has shot the images is captivating.  The series features aerial views from atop skyscrapers in Manhattan, offering the viewer a look that is straight down.

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People will stop in their tracks and take a closer look – there is a lot of detail in these photos and the angle of looking downward takes a second to come into sharp focus.  Visitors spend more time looking at the images and people waiting for a train will study the art or photographs.  We always hear from people that they have noticed the photographs in the station and when it is your regular station the photos or artworks become part of the daily landscape.  Ideally, one notices a new detail every day.

- Lester Burg – Senior Manager , MTA Arts for Transit and Urban Design

CES – Drones, Phones and Wearabletech!

For those of you unfamiliar with CES it’s the annual Consumer Electronics show and the Hollywood of Tech. A glitzy VIP club for the latest shiny new things. It sends the press into hyperbole and brings out the techno-geek in all of us. Of course Las Vegas is the perfect backdrop – an incongruous fantasy world in the middle of the desert (a description that could apply equally to both show and city). The combination is quite overpowering, yet seductive enough to attract 150,000 visitors annually. After four shows I’m still not sure whether I love it or hate it – either way there’s no doubting its credentials to fuel the imagination in ways few other shows can match.

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The Strip at night.

2014 was the largest in history with 2 million square feet of exhibit space and over 3200 exhibitors. It is simply stellar in dimension. This year the pretty young things were hailed as wearable tech, drones, 3D printing, next gen smart phones and the Internet of Things to name a few. All exciting opportunities no doubt, but time will tell which live up to the promise. That 3D printing and wearable tech have been around for decades didn’t seem to matter; this year both technologies had evolved to a futuristic sexiness that demanded attention.

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South Hall Entrance

Wearables had been catapulted to stardom by the booming smartphone and app market and just needed the sensors to catch up. Perhaps I should be more interested in how long I’ve sat down and how many calories I’ve burnt, but what would I do with the information bar feel a little guilty about my second piece of toast? The real potential of wearable tech is still waiting in the wings. Imagine a comprehensive health monitor that diagnoses all manner of health problems before they arise – now that sounds useful, but still only scratching the surface as just about everything we use evolves into a connected network.

So we enter the surreal Internet of Things. A rather expansive term attributed to the British technologist Kevin Ashton, encapsulating the concept that everyday objects are now connecting to the internet. Each one uniquely identifiable, accessible, controllable and working silently in the background to make life better. (At least I hope that’s the outcome). And the machines manage themselves. M2M or Machine to Machine technology is growing with google-like determination, with IDC forecasting 212 billion connected things by 2020 and over 30billion autonomous things. Whether the thought of things controlling things without human intervention fills you with wonder or something less savory, it is going to happen and will be one of the biggest revolutions over the horizon. All part of the BIG DATA phenomenon.

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The LV Monorail – every 4 minutes to the show at peak times

3D printing in the home is an impossibly exciting prospect, but what would I print? It’s too slow and expensive for things that can be mass produced – if you wanted a new plastic fork, you’d just buy one. No, the value of 3D printing, at least in the short term, is to create something unique. The prototype and hobbyist market is booming whilst personalization of objects has yet to find mainstream appeal, but watch this space…!

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3D printed models (hand painted) at the 3D systems booth

And so to Kodak Alaris. This was our first CES as the new company. As I entered the foyer to the South Hall and climbed the escalator, a Kodak Moments sign hove into view. We had secured prime position at the hall entrance – it could not have been better sited.

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The Kodak Moments Print Place

The team was busy setting up an array of kiosks and mobile printing sales collateral. I continued on to our conference room suite and demo facilities in Hall 4 of the South Hall next to Google. (Incidentally – it is always a source of amazement to me how the show floor moves from utter mess to pristine overnight.)

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South Hall the day before opening.

Our show message was mobile. A third of the world’s population will have a smartphone with a hi-res camera by 2017 – already the preferred way of capturing planned as well as spontaneous photos. Gartner estimates total app downloads tripped past 100 billion in 2013. The number of digital images in existence is now estimated at over 2 trillion and growing fast. And each time we make it easier for consumers to print and do more with their images from smartphones we see a step change upwards in printing. Already we have accounts with over 20% of orders from Mobile devices. Our My Kodak Moments app passed 3 million downloads in December, and in October last year we took the bold step of allowing any developer to add Kodak printing capability to existing and new photo based apps with the launch of the Kodak Photo Service.  We now have seven partner apps live giving a total of 14million app downloads available to print.

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Image from CNN article 8th Jan 2014

Our message at the show was simple. You can now print easily from your mobile devices wherever you are – and the Kodak connected infrastructure and range of apps able to do this is growing all the time.

On the first day of the show the severe east coast weather was still making headlines. I was delayed a day travelling over and with 17,000 flights cancelled the prior week;there was no doubt early attendance was affected. It quickly picked up on Day two though as airlines worked their way through Atlantic quantities of de-icer and got the US moving again.

The lobby booth was a storming success and bustling with activity from dawn till dusk every day. Feedback was unanimously positive and we have a great opportunity to further expand our touchpoints, connected retail distribution and awareness. Our open platform mobile strategy in this space has been well received by press and customers alike and there is much to play for over the coming months.

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Karen Hoff -  in control at the lobby booth!

Finally I would like to thank our tireless team who really did a wonderful job in the planning and execution of our CES presence – it was a great success! The next show is the big one for our industry – Photokina, which takes place in September at Cologne. Look forward to sharing the experience as it happens, it’s sure to be a something special

Best wishes to all for 2014!

Darren