What Kinds Of Photo Damage Can Be Fixed

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Touching Up a Damaged Photograph

Water Damaged

There is nothing worse than digging out some old boxes of treasured items and finding out that some time down the line, water has gotten in somewhere and ruined the whole box. This can be even worse when you find that the box was full of old photographs which are now faded, cracked and bleached by being steeped in water.

Fortunately there are photo touch up experts out there who can repair even this kind of damage. As long as there is still some semblance of the photos image still visible through the damage they should be able to create a brand new photograph for you.

Torn or Cracked

It can be mortifying when you go to pick up a treasured photograph and catching it on something pull a tear straight across it. Additionally you might find that an older photo that has been crumpled or kept in someone’s pocket will have formed cracks.

While you might be tempted to tear up the photo in a rage as a result of this, DON’T! This is not a lost cause.  In fact this is one of the most common repair jobs for photo touch up experts. By utilising the shades and definite lines either side of the crack they can piece together the two parts to create a like now image.

Faded or Poor Quality

Some older pictures are simply of a far lower quality due to being significantly older. It stands to reason that this would be more common in older photos. They didn’t have the enhanced focus mega pixel cameras way back when. Other photos will simply have faded due to being kept in bright light or through natural deterioration.

As a result, this can make some elements of the picture somewhat difficult to make out. However, this is not a lost cause to a photo repair expert. Whether it’s a colour or black and white photo an expert should be able to put a bit more detail into the image utilising shading enhancements to ensure that the image is crisper and that the vital elements stand out.

Ruined by Flash or Blurring

Unfortunately this isn’t witchcraft or wizardry so some forms of repair simply aren’t possible. When a photo is taken and there are obvious issues like blurring or obscuring due to the flash, there is little that can be done.

This is simply because there isn’t the image available to repair. That part of the photo was never captured so anything added in this place would simply be made up. This is a case of either cropping the photo or accepting that it’s unfortunately a lost cause.

Featured images:

License: Image author owned

Steven Roecamb has conducted some photo touch up on his own damaged pictures. However, he knows that a more skilled professional is required for severely damaged photos.

Blog post courtesy of: adam01

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Photo formats, size and quality tips for photographers

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There are several different file formats, and many photographers are a little unclear about the difference between each.
Some common questions usually asked in relation to print quality & formats below:

- What’s the preferred file type: RAW, PNG, TIFF or JPEG?

- Why don’t the prints I ordered look as good as what I see on my computer monitor?

- My last order of 8×10 inch prints didn’t look as good as my 4 inch prints.

- I have a choice on my camera for quality / megapixel settings, which should I use?

- I recieved my photo gift and the quality is different from the original printed photo, why?


These questions are answered in the information provided below. If you still have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact usfor more detailed information.


Formats for Saving Pictures

There are a number of file formats available for saving pictures such as RAW, PNG, TIFF, JPEG, GIF, etc. Each of these formats has a useful purpose; if you take lots of pictures, you may want to move beyond PNG or JPEG file format which is usually the default on most digital cameras.

Whether shooting in JPEG or RAW, remember to back up photos after moving them from the camera to the computer. Burn them to a DVD, or transfer them to a portable hard drive kept in another location – away from the computer. Better yet, seek the advice of a local photo retailer for archiving and storage options.

What size should I save them at?

It can get very confusing what quality or format to save your images, however if you plan on one day printing your images it is recommened to save them at one of the largest size as you can always scale them down with various software or online tools. This is also dependant on the amount of space on your memory stick or in-built camera storage space so aim for a larger size where possible, but if you can only save 10-50 photos at the largest size you may prefer going down a size or two for a lot more photos to be saved at slightly lower sizes which are still good enough to print.

Web page images tend to load quickly because they are reduced in size for optimum loading speed. The same occurs with most photos posted on social media websites such as facebook, myspace, twitter, etc. Photos posted on social media website are usually not ideal to use for printing as they appear clear on a computer screen but are much smaller when printed out with a printer. It is usually best to use the original photograph where possible for printing.  

GIF, PNG and JPEG are usually the most preferred image file formats for web pages because they can be saved at lower quality than RAW or TIFF file formats.

File Formats for Making Prints

For those special images you want to print and display, the preferred file format is TIFF. TIFF is an uncompressed file format which hasn’t been reduced in any way and preserves all of the original settings. RAW file formats are also very large like TIFF files, but less commonly used online and between different camera versions so you may later find compatibility issues using default RAW settings.

JPEG File Format:

For lots of amateurs and family photographers, JPEG is just fine. Make sure the camera is set to the highest quality resolution setting and to save pictures with the least amount of compression. The camera manual will explain how to do this. A photo retailer can also help. JPEG is fine for snapshots, but you have limited ability to correct overexposed or underexposed areas. A professional wanting greater control will probably shoot in RAW or TIFF file format. Most websites and photo kiosks these days tend to easily recognise JPEG file formats over RAW formats too.

JPEG is also usually the recommended format for sharing images on the web or by email as it is usually a smaller file size than RAW file formats.

RAW File Format:

RAW format allows a photographer to capture more detail than when shooting in JPEG format; it also provides more control over color correction and exposure adjustment in the digital darkroom. The ability to change the white balance on a RAW file or dig out some extra detail in highlight and shadow areas can make an immediate impact on the overall look of a photo. Since RAW files do capture lots of detail without applying processing or compression algorithms, they will take up more space on a memory card and hard drive. If your camera offers the opportunity to shoot RAW, pick up a few extra memory cards so you can save in larger formats.

RAW files can create a problem because different camera manufacturers have different “flavors” of RAW. For example, Canon RAW files are known as .CRW, Nikon files are .NEF, Pentax files are .PEF, and Olympus uses .ORF. The DNG format (for “digital negative”) was recently created by Adobe in an effort to unify the slightly different RAW formats created by the various manufacturers. Many photographers fear these differences may potentially become problematic in the long term, as one manufacturer’s RAW files may not be futureproof in new software applications. To protect digital negatives (RAW files) for many years to come, converting them to DNG, TIFF or JPEG may be well worth the effort. The presumption is all new software will recognize DNG, TIFF and JPG, while some RAW versions particular to a manufacturer may fall by the wayside and possibly be unreadable in the future.


Related Resources:

Print Quality Issues & Great Framing Tips

New York Institute of Photography

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Tips for Photographing Pets

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Shooting pets can be one of the most rewarding types of photography one can do, but it’s not as simple as it may seem; they move – and very quickly!

One way to solve this problem is to restrict the areas into which your subject can bolt.  Ways to accomplish this task are to place kittens in baskets and puppies in buckets, nestled into wingback chairs, placed on picnic tables, or even on stumps tall enough to make them think before leaping.

Kitties are just as difficult to corral and wrangle; but they too can be confined to a specific area, giving you enough time to photograph them before they have a chance to remove themselves from their portrait sittings.

The fence concept is a great way to allow your kitty to be free to move about, back and forth, but always at the same distance from the camera, give or take a few inches.


Peeking from tall boots or even sitting on top of their dog houses might also work.


Getting help from the pet owner, or even a friend if it’s your own animal, is a must for shooting animals. Not only will it make the shoot go easier, it will be a lot of fun.

Remember to focus on the eye nearest the camera. It’s difficult to do close-ups that aren’t looking squarely and directly at the face, in which both eyes are in focus. When presented that choice, just remember to focus on the eye nearest you.

If you have a friend or family member around, they can also distract your pet with either a toy (squeaky ones work great with dogs, but can scare cats away) or small treats. The best treats are ones that can be gobbled and not chewed. Rewards are quick, and you waste no time waiting for them to finish. This kind of assistance should also allow for some more or less candid photography, as your pet is now paying attention to the food and/or toy provider and not worrying about you and the camera.

Other tips for shooting your pets might be to include other members of your family. The interactions can be fun and provide some idea of scale.

For pet dogs you could try throwing an object (ball, bone, frizby, etc) that they can fetch and bring back to you and get a great mid motion shot as they are returning to you. You might have to do this several times to get the right shot depending on the shutter speed on your camera which may go off too early or late on initial attempts.


8 Simple Tips to Persudage Your Pets to Pose

1. Command and Reward – pets love praise as well as treats

2. Incorporate Play – some pets are extremely playful and arent able to sit or stand in one position for even 10 seconds.  Work with their active personality.

3. Keep the Set Small – some pets frighten easily, so help them feel safe and secure in a smaller setting away from excessive chaos.

4. Use Props – props act as a distraction for your pet, so make sure to have plenty of familiar favorites on hand.

5. Get Pre-Photo Excercise – an overly-energetic pet can make it difficult to get even one good shot. Burn off any excess energy.

6. Play Music – relaxing music can ease the photo-shoot and help your pet to focus.

7. Kneel Down – Put yourself in your pet’s position, it can be a bit intimidating to have a human towering over you.

8. Go Candid – After you’ve snapped your posed pictures, take a few candid shots when your pet isn’t looking.

Once you’re done with the photo shoot, preserve the memories of your pet in a keepsake photobook, calendar or photo gift.


5 Ways to Make Your Family Pet Part of Special Occassions

Your precious pet is a beloved part of your household. When it comes to special occassions like weddings, reunions or birthdays, why leave them behind.  These five simple ideas can help you incorporate your pet into special occassions.

1. Make your pet part of your wedding. Have your pet greeting guests, act as ring bearer or sit at the alter as part of the wedding party.

2. Celebrate holidays together by integrating them into festivities; hang and stuff a stocking for your pet at Christmas or fill an Easter basket with pet friendly goodies.

3. Hold a pet friendly reunion. Its great to see family at an annual reunion, why not include your non-human family members.  Arrange games that pets and people can play, set up a pet-friendly buffett.

4. Host a pet party and celebrate your pet’s birthday or adoption day.

5. Give a small gift at birthdays or Christmas from your pet to say “Thank you!” for the love and attention they receive.


Related Articles/ References:

- Tips for Photographing Pets by Frank Siteman

- Five Ways to Make Your Family Pet Part of Special Occassions

- Personalised Gifts for Pets at DigiGifts


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Popular Photography Apps for Smart Phones

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 In July 2008, Apple introduced its second generation iPhone along with the creation of the App Store with both free and paid applications. The App Store delivers third party programs that can run naitivy on the iPhone devices. The App Store has been a huge success for Apple and by April 2010 hosting supposedly more than 185,000 applications. 

The Andriod operating system for smartphones was released in late 2008, backed by a Google platform, along with major hardware and software developers (such as Intel, HTC, ARM, Motorola and Sumsung, to name a few), that form the Open Handset Appliance. The first phone to use Andriod was the HTC Dream, branded for distribution by T-Mobile as the G1. Third-party apps are available via the Android Market (released October 2008), including both free and paid apps.

Photography has come a long way in the last 5-10 years since the introduction of smart phones such as the iPhones and Andriods (to name a few). The list below has been compiled from a variety of popular online sources (mentioned at the end of this post) as well as suggestions from our customers. There is something here for everyone from basic to advanced smart phone and photographers. If you feel that we’ve missed any must-have applications for photography, please let us know below this post.

Camera apps are designed to work with your images on capture. They may also provide you with extensive image adjustment features (such as colour adjustment, cropping, rotating, etc), but their primary purpose is to become the way that you shoot pictures on your device.

Hipstamatic ($2.49) - iTunes Rating: 4/5
“Digital photography never looked to analog. The Hipstamatic brings back the look, feel, unpredictable beauty, and fun of plastic toy cameras of the past! The Hipstamatic keeps the quirks of shooting old school but gives you the abilty to swap lenses, film, and flash settings all with the swipe of a finger.”

(Credit: Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET)

 Instagram (Free) – iTunes Rating: 4.5/5
“Instagram is an amazingly fun & simple life-sharing app for your iPhone. Snap photos wherever you go to show the world what’s going on in your life. Follow your friends’ photo updates as they move through the world. Select from photo filters that transform regular ol’ photos into works of art you’ll want to keep around forever.”

(Credit: iphone.appstorm.net)

Pocketbooth ($0.99) – iTunes Rating: 4/5
“Turn your iPhone or iPod touch into a vintage photobooth with Pocketbooth: the photobooth that fits in your pocket. Pocketbooth perfectly replicates the intimacy, spontaneity, and hilarity of a traditional photobooth. Take it to your next party and watch as your friends’ inner-divas emerge.”

(Credit: iphone.appstorm.net)

TwitPic ($1.19) – iTunes Rating: 3/5
“TweetPic app lets you share photos on Twitter. TweetPic for Twitpic Uploader is a specifically designed minimal iPhone/iPod Touch app to upload images to Twitpic and optionally share then via Twitter.”

(Credit: www.twi5.com)

Photoshop Express (Free) – iTunes Rating 4.5/5
“Adobe Photoshop Express software lets you use simple gestures to quickly edit and share photos from your mobile device. Enjoy having your photo and video library right in your hand – without wasting your device’s valuable storage space.” 

(Credit: http://thenextweb.com) 

(Free) - iTunes Rating 3/5
“Wink is a new service from Shutterfly that lets you create printed photostrips with your iPhone, facebook, Shutterfly and Flickr photos. We print them up on high quality photo paper and deliver them anywhere in the world in our Wink mailer.” 
Shutterfly Wink app to encourage social networkers
(Credit: http://www.mobilemarketer.com)

Find a Photographer
(Free) - iTunes Rating (not rated yet)
“Download Find A Photographer to connect with members of ASMP, the premier association for the world’s most respected photographers. Search by location and specialty area to find a quality professional for your next photography assignment.”


Note: Doesn’t seem to do country search very well yet, displays only USA results for Australian search. :-(

(Credit: Apple AppStore)

More photography tools coming soon… If you have any suggestions, please let us know.

Remember that your smart phone is the camera that’s always with you, so make sure that your camera bag is full of the right tools!

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