About Mitch Goldstone

Mitch Goldstone is president & CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com, the ecommerce photo digitization service, founded in 1990

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How to Take Remarkable Holiday Photos

Santa Gets a Bear HugBetween the excitement, non-stop activity, and inevitable exhaustion, it can be incredibly hard to snap holiday photos that truly capture the happiness, surprise, and delight of the season.


Here are some tips on how to snap not one, but many, remarkable holiday photos:


Take “tight” shots


Move in close to your subject, whether it’s the entire family, or just the kids, so they fill up the entire frame. If you’re taking candid shots, zoom in so as not to distract the subject. Tight shots produce photos that are much more impressive and impactful than ones filled with distractions.



Snap an excessive amount of photos


This is especially true when you are trying to take a group shot because capturing everyone looking perfect at once is a monumental task. Adjust the settings on your camera to burst or continuous mode so it will take photos in rapid succession – and snap away. Take more photos than you think you will need. You can always delete the awful ones later!


Turn off the flash when indoors


If you are taking photos indoors, turn off the flash to prevent the artificial light it emits from making a photo appear “flat.” During the day, position your subjects near a window (but not in front of it!) to take advantage of the natural light. At night, turn on every light in the room and light up the space like a stadium.


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Scanning Kodachrome slides and Digital ICE

Kodachrome filmWhile ScanMyPhotos champions scanning of your photos to protect them from the unforeseen, we also feature professional 35mm slide scanning services. Each slide is individually hand scanned by our professional technicians, you can select to have each adjusted to achieve the optimum color and density so you end up with the best possible scan at either 2,000 or 4,000 dpi. One issue that arises though is scanning Kodachrome slides and trying to use the Digital ICE process. It is a very powerful scanning tool built into nearly all current slide scanners however, Kodachrome tends to be tricky to scan. First a little history and then we will discuss the issues that everyone faces when scanning Kodachrome.


What is Kodachrome?


Kodachrome is famous for, among other things, being the topic of a Paul Simon song, a U.S. State Park in Utah (Kodachrome Basin State Park) and being tricky to scan. The film itself was introduced by Kodak in 1935 but was discontinued in 2009 and nearly all processing of the film stopped in 2010. Since the film was discontinued, there was no reason for labs to continue processing the film since processing was complex and exacting, requiring technicians with extensive chemistry training and large, complex machinery. Think of them as the Walter Whites of film processing.



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How To Restore Old Photos: Pay One Price Photo Restoration

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Among your generations of photo snapshots, do you also have those extra-special family heirlooms that are fading away, torn or need a major makeover? ScanMyPhotos.com and its photo restoration experts do magic.



Results of a Damaged Photo Restored at ScanMyPhotos.com


Awhile back, USA Today’s Jefferson Graham, visited with us and had ScanMyPhotos.com digitally restore a photo that meant the world to his wife. She shared such a powerful story about why this tattered and torn photo needed to come back to life. All restoration stories are equally as emotional ar2 - How To Restore Old Photos: Pay One Price Photo Restorationnd the reason why the photo imaging business is so enjoyable and important.


For more info on ScanMyPhotos.com and the Photo Restoration services, click here.


Click here to view more ScanMyPhotos.com photo restoration samples.


BEFORE OUR MAGIC PHOTO RESTORATION

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[Picture restoration for Jefferson Graham]


Let us restore and enhance your vintage photographs into works of art to be enjoyed and preserved for generations. Old pictures fade and degrade with time. Fix old and damaged photos with our custom professional Kodak-quality photo restoration today from 30 Minute Photo Etc. Since 1990, our customers have trusted us with all their photographic and now digital imaging services. You are about to find out why.


Any photo restoration is now only $39.95, with a 20-day turnaround. Faster turn-around times available at an additional cost (see below). Additional print sizes on Kodak photo paper are available. Add tax for CA residents only (7.75%). All major credit cards accepted. Due to the custom nature of this work, no discounts, online gift certificates, or promo codes are valid for any restoration work.


See a few samples of before and after.
Results of a Damaged Photo Restored at ScanMyPhotos.com
Find out how easy it is to have your photos restored.

 

Ready to order and upload your images, click here. This is also ideal for restoring those special pictures that were recently scanned by ScanMyPhotos.com
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What is the best way to clean 35mm slides and negatives?

While Kodak’s Digital ICE, which is used for slide and negative scanning at ScanMyPhotos.com, does help remove unwanted dust and scratches, it is only designed to remove a moderate amount. If your film and slides are very dirty or dusty, it is in your best interest to clean them prior to sending them in to be scanned. Here are some recommended tips:

newlogo - What is the best way to clean 35mm slides and negatives?
    • Purchase a soft, anti-static cleaning cloth or microfiber cloth, like those used for cleaning lenses and gently clean each slide and negative.

    • boxSlides - What is the best way to clean 35mm slides and negatives?Gently wipe the film negative and slides from one side to the other. Careful.  Watch for abrasive material, like sand, which should be gently blown off the negative before wiping with the dust cloth. Canned air is preferred.  For 35mm mounted slides, remove the film from its plastic or cardboard casing before wiping to avoid just brushing dust to the edges of the slide.
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    • FOR ADVANCED USERS: Find an alcohol-based film cleaner and compressed photographic gas at a photography store or online.

  • The film cleaner should have a neutral pH and not contain any water.

  • Cotton pads can be purchased at any drugstore. Pour the film cleaner on a cotton pad and spread it on the negative. A light touch and a steady hand will help preserve your film and prevent scratching. Use the compressed gas to blow off cotton fibers and dry the film cleaner. The negative should now be free from non-water-based stains.

More Frequently Asked Slide Scanning Questions


More Frequently Asked Film / Negative Scanning Questions


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Why There Was No Weeping After the Storm Destroyed Generations of Photos

iStock_000017770225XSmallFran P., a grandmother from Chicago, was emotionless after a storm damaged her family’s photo memories. Decades of pictures turned into a brick-like mass of paper; plastered together after the water damage flooded her shoeboxes of photos that had been sealed and ‘protected’ for years.


Does her method of storing photos sound familiar to you? The sight of all those lost family memories did not distraught Fran; she simply pressed the retrieve button on her computer and the photo restoration was complete with lightning-fast speed. It was more like waving a magic wand to set back the time to fix a potential daunting problem. There was no weeping after the storm turned very personal memories into a stack of useless paper.



Whether, you have film negatives, 35mm slides or photo snapshots, you too can be spared from the next flood or natural disaster if you digitize your images.


ScanMyPhotos.com, a leading photo digitization company, based in California, provides a smart way to remedy the anxiety Fran faced when she realized all of her photos were damaged.


Prepaid fill-the-box photo scanning service with free shipping and handling, along with individual photo scanning are the recommended solution to protect photos, and how to share pictures on Facebook, Instragram, smartphones and other photo sharing platforms.


In the case of Fran, she had ordered the ScanMyPhotos.com prepaid box that holds upwards of 2,000 standard photos, which was mailed to her home and included all return shipping information. It was easy to mail off those photos, and in her case, just in time to have it scanned to DVDs. Along with traditional photo scanning service, we feature rotating pictures, photo enhancement, instant uploading, hard cover bound custom photo index albums; scanning each picture in the order provided with extra DVDs, or thumb drives — as backup.


Once scanned, it is essential to store the Thumb Drives and DVDs of your digitized photos offsite. ScanMyPhotos.com provides very cost-effective volume ordering of extra archival media and recommends you store copies with relatives, in your office, and locked away in safety deposit box vaults. Prepare for the worst and have your preparedness plan in place now.


Related News

videoScreenShotIn a related story, check out USA Today tech reporter, Jefferson Graham’s story on preserving your memories in which he recommends using ScanMyPhotos as a first step in protecting your photos from natural disasters and organizing past photos.


http://www.scanmyphotos.com/blog/2015/01/jefferson-graham-usa-today-scan-old-photos.html


ScanMyPhotos.com has made a business from the popular trending social media hashtag #TBT (ThrowbackThursday), as everyone wants to share decades past pictures, but can’t unless each is digitized

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