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Tricks & Tips

Posts Tagged ‘Photos’

Dead Simple File Sharing

March 16th, 2010
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It can’t get any easier than this!  Need to share photos?  A video?  How about some music?  Just email the attachments to post@posterous.com and they send you back the link.  Forward it on to friends or family.  Easy! =)

Learn more at posterous.com

NOTE: By default,  files are public and available to anyone.  Create a free account to password protect your files!  See Posterous help to learn more.

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Why The Red X In My Emails?

March 17th, 2009
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One customer asked:
“Why is it when I open certain emails, the picture shows up as a blank box with a little red square in the upper left corner?”

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Answer
For security, most email applications disable pictures by default.  Instead of seeing the photo, you see a blank white box with the red X (above).  If you trust the sender and want to show the pictures, right click on it and choose Download Pictures.  Or, there may be a link at the top that says “Show Images”.

Other reasons for this could be the sender didn’t attach the picture correctly or the linked photo isn’t valid or online.

Want to permanently allow images?
Try adding the sender to your address book.  Often this tells your email program you trust the sender.  Or to allow ALL images, follow the instructions for your email program:

  • Outlook 2003:  Tools -> Options -> Security -> Change Automatic Download Settings -> Uncheck “Don’t download pictures or other content automatically in HTML email.”
  • Outlook 2007:  Tools -> Trust Center -> Automatic Download -> Uncheck “Don’t download pictures…”
  • Outlook Express:  Tools -> Options -> Security tab -> Uncheck “Block images and other external content in HTML e-mail”

Why? ( technical )
Images in emails can expose many extra details about you.  By requesting the image, one can determine that you did open their email.  They could also record details such as your IP address (almost your physical location).  Typically this is harmless for statistical reasons only.  However, think about opening images in a spam message – you just told the spammer that you check and read your email!


A little extra…

Tax Law:  The 25 Most Frequently Asked Questions

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Free application Microsoft ICE (Image Composite Editor) lets you quickly and easily stitch several photos together to create a fantastic wide-angle panoramic.

After installing (download here), start ICE.  Drag and drop your photos and sit back for 10-20 seconds.  That’s it.  Single click on the Auto Crop feature to instantly trim away the edges that didn’t fit.  Done!  Simple.

Here are some great tips for actually taking photos for stitching purposes, including white balance, angles, overlapping, etc.

If you are looking for more control, you might check out some of these other highly recommended options:


In the News…

Verizon might get the iPhone this year!?  Not that I use an iPhone, but I enjoy options.  Continue reading…

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Easily Re-Size Photos

December 30th, 2008
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If you need to re-size your photos before emailing, or before posting online, here are two easy ways to get it done:

1.  Download free tool, Image Resizer PowerToy.  This method is simple and fast.  Find the image, right click, and choose Resize Pictures.

2.  Install Windows Live Photo Gallery (screenshot above).  This tool boast many other free tools for editing your photos within a few clicks.  It’s also a great, must have viewer if your still running Windows XP.  Tag, crop, adjust color, remove redeye, and of course, re-size.  After you install using the link above, run by right clicking on your photo, choose Open With, click Windows Live Photo Gallery.
Note:  when installing Photo Gallery, uncheck all the extra applications it shows you can install (Toolbar, Writer, etc).

Want to share your photos online at Flickr?  Windows Live Photo Gallery can upload directly for you.  Run Windows Updates after installing to ensure you have the most recent version.

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10 Tips for Better Holiday Photos

December 16th, 2008
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By guest contributor, Kendall Adams.

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1. Plan ahead for your photographs – make sure you have everything you need when taking your photos. Fresh Batteries, extra digital storage cards, flash, lenses etc. Oh yes….and the camera! Many holiday memories are lost because the batteries died, you ran out of storage, or you just forgot the camera!

2. Yes. There are rules but sometimes they need to be broken! Don’t always stick to the rules – sometimes a slight blur or movement of the camera can give a soft holiday glow to your pictures. Try zooming the lens during a long exposure. Change your cameras settings to accentuate the movement or the focal point of your photo.

3. Use Flash outdoors to add just a little bit of extra sparkle to the eyes and to fill some of the shadows that might be on the face of your subjects. Try to use natural lighting indoors to add warmth to your photos and eliminate the dark backgrounds that your flash can create. If your camera has a fill-flash feature try to familiarize yourself with it. If you have to use flash indoors this feature can be a life-saver!

4. Move in closer! Almost any photograph can be improved by moving in a little closer. This can add emphasis to your subject and may also eliminate any distracting background clutter.

5. Look for unique viewpoints – take an extra minute to really look at the scene you are photographing. Are there bright colors, interesting items you can use in your composition, or reflections? Consider using any or all of these elements to add interest and help tell the story.

6. Use your cameras digital LCD to preview your photos. There isn’t a better way to see if you got their photo or not. Most of today’s cameras offer a zoom function on the preview. This will allow you to check exposure and focus. If you don’t like what you see – shoot it again!

7. Compose your photos well! Try to keep your subject slightly off center. Look for distracting background items that can ruin your photos. Make sure you have everyone’s head and body parts in the photo. Use elements in your shots to add interest and a sense of place. A chair, a window, a plant, almost any item found around your subject can be used to add interest.

8. Take LOTS of Photos! When taking pictures of family and friends, especially in groups, there will always be someone who either closes their eyes or does not smile. Increase your chances of success by taking more photos than you think you will need. Better safe than sorry!

9. BE PREPARED! If you don’t have the camera ready you will miss the shot. Baby’s first Christmas gift, the children’s surprise as they see what Santa left, even Dad snoring after Christmas dinner. Try to have the camera close by. Make sure you are familiar with the cameras controls. Be ready to shoot!

10. Use your photos as gifts! Everyone loves to get a great photo of their family and friends. If you have shots that you are particularly proud of print them and put them in a nice frame. This is a great gift that someone will treasure and always remember you by.

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If you, or your friends, haven’t registered for the DWZ Christmas Giveaway, this is your last chance!
We’ll pick four random entries and announce the winner in Thursday’s Tip!
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I happened upon a fantastic collection of photography tutorials last night. If you enjoy taking pictures, these are a must see: How to Take Portraits


A few excerpts…

Photographing Children – “Probably the most important tip I’ve learned in photographing them is to get on their level. So many of my friends show me photos of their kids which are taken from 4 or so feet above the child which does nothing but dwarf them and make them look almost toy-like.”

Candid Shots – “… when you shoot multiple images quickly of a person you can sometimes get some surprising and spontaneous shots that you’d have never gotten if you shot just one. Switch your camera to continuous shooting mode and shoot in bursts of images and in doing so you’ll increase your chances of that perfect shot.”

Keep it Simple – “The more complex your scene is the more unlikely you are to get a shot that is the X factor. Keep your backgrounds (and foregrounds) uncluttered, work with natural light where you can, if you have to use artificial light keep it simple and use as few lights as possible.”

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Fun with Photos

July 17th, 2008
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http://www.kyolo.com/

Looking to add a little fun to your photos?  Kyolo lets easily add speech bubbles to liven them up.  Its free, and doesn’t require registration.  Just visit the site, click browse to select your photo, and enjoy!

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How to Minimize Clutter

June 17th, 2008
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Take a picture of things you need save.  A receipt, a note, directions, another picture, etc.  Snap it, then throw it away.  Email the picture to yourself.

This might also work to reduce sentimental things you might collect.  Taking a picture can still retain the visual memory, without the actual item.  Use your camera to photograph the item, and then let it go.  This is a great way to really clean house.

I heard about this cleaning method a while back but it wasn’t until recently I put it into practice.  I don’t have my scanner (wow do I scan everything!) and my wallet was getting jammed with receipts and notes.  I use my camera phone to snap (or “scan”) and then toss the paper.  Easy!

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Convert from one file type to another –
Have you ever had a .DOC file but didn’t have MS Word? Or a .TIFF file and not the right image program? Or a .WAV and need a .MP3? The list goes on. You Convert It  allows you to select  one file and it will convert to the type you need it in!

Send large files to someone –
Email is NOT the best way to send a large file (really, anything over 5-10MB). If you have a 100MB file and need to send it to someone, select the Send Files tab across the top of the site. Specify the email address to send to, and select your file. Send!

They have a few other neat features too, check it out … www.youconvertit.com

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Editing Your Photos

April 3rd, 2008
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Editing Your Photos
Ever want to remove red eye from a photo? Maybe crop it down to the size you need? Change the lighting? The list goes on. Below are three great online options.

Picnic:
http://www.picnik.com/. Free, doesn’t require an account… get started right away! Easy.

Photoshop Express:
Last week Adobe released an online version of their popular, Photoshop. You’ve probably heard of Photoshop before and linked it with professional editing, probably because it has always had such a high price tag. Now, their Photoshop Express is online, and free. Of course it isn’t as feature rich as the software version, but a great alternative.
https://www.photoshop.com/express/landing.html is the link to setup a an account.

Gimp:
Funny name, but a great application. This is not web based, rather an application you need to download. This is a powerful tool for intermediate to advanced editing. Another free tool: www.gimp.org.

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