His Eyes Are Closed!

If you have ever tried to take digital photographs of a group of people, you know that it can be a challenge. Someone usually has their eyes closed. I often take multiple shots, hoping that one will be just right, but it doesn't always work out. Groupshot

Thanks to SeanDaniel.com, we heard about a cool new tool that was released in January called Group Shot by Microsoft Research. You can select your favorite parts from a series of several photos and build a composite image.

According to a January lifehacker post, the team had not yet extensively tested the product. Give it a try and let us know what you think. We're always looking for ways to enhance the quality of our digital photographs.

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ZoomAlbum™ is "a Good Thing"

Photocoverbday1 To borrow Martha Stewart's favorite phrase: it's a "Good Thing."  Every time I show off a ZoomAlbum™ to relatives or friends, somebody wants a copy. It's really been a timesaver for me to save all my projects with a new name. That way I can go back and print them as needed.

This unique album works really well for events and holidays where there are a lot of people in attendance who would each like copies of the same photos. It makes a nice remembrance of the day.

Here are some interesting sites:

How Has Your Life Improved with Technology?

OuthouseProbably many of you remember using one of these outhouses. Times sure have changed for the better.

That's true with photography, too. My dad was a newspaper photographer, so as a youngster I spent a lot of time with him in the darkroom, watching anxiously for film to be developed and processed to see how our pictures turned out. Today we can snap a photo with a digital camera and immediately print it.

My favorite method to share photos today is a ZoomAlbum™. People of all ages smile when I hand them one of these unique books. They are so easy to make. Take a look at the directions.

Here's a few interesting sites:

Portable External Drive by Seagate is an Option

BackupDo you have a backup plan for your precious photos? The hard drive on my laptop crashed recently and this time we haven't been able to recover the data - including some of my recent photos. There's really no excuse with the multitude of options available today. Which method do you use?

The Seagate Portable External Hard Drive seems to be a popular purchase. Check the following blogs for more information:

Photo on Flickr by Brian Veloso

Zoom Lens is Essential at the Zoo

BirdA family trip to the zoo can create many lasting memories. We went to the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines, Iowa last week. (They don't have a blog, but their WebCam is awesome.)

The best photos I got that day are of the birds and animals. They seem to hold still better than kids under six! One of my favorites is this beautiful fella - an egret, I think. Can any of you tell me for sure?

I use a Canon PowerShot S2 IS. The zoom feature is great because I can get close-ups that were impossible before. Any suggestions for capturing shots of wriggly children?

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Lost Your Pictures? Recover Them with PhotoRec

Photorec  PhotoRec is a free, open-source file recovery software that helps in recovering lost pictures or files from your digital camera memory or from a Hard Disk or CDRom. It's available for WIN or MAC users

All reports we've seen say its safe and doesn't write over anything on disk/drive your attempting to recover from.

Here's a link to the PhotoRec free download page. Let us know if you've tried PhotoRec, or do you have a different recovery system you favor?

Print Your Own ZoomAlbum, Or...

Set_m_1 Let us print 'em for you.

We're almost ready to launch a new service here at Benra - a ZoomAlbum "You Pic 'em, We Print 'em" service. We're excited about it and have you to thank for the idea.

We've heard from folks that:

  • don't have a color printer
  • want dozens of ZoomAlbums to send to friends & family, but want help putting the ZoomAlbum together
  • inquired about using ZoomAlbum as a portfolio or presentation handout

We should have the "You Pic 'em, We Print 'em" online store ready soon. Do you know which Pics you want us to Print?

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DSLR or Point and Shoot?


Digital Photography School answers this question in-depth, but in easy-to-read fashion. Another important question: Are Megapixels everyhting?

What kind of camera do you use?

Tip of the lens cap to Lifehacker.

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Mini Model Photography?


Receding Hairline blog shares some tricks on how to get your photographs to look like miniature model pictures.

Tip of the lens to Lifehacker