About Monika Jansen

Here are my most recent posts

Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2018 Holiday Deals for Photography Lovers

family Christmas photoIt’s the most wonderful sale time of the year—Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2018 will be here before you know it!


Are you ready to take advantage of some fantastic camera and photography deals?  If so, we’ve scoured the interwebs and uncovered holiday sales we know ScanMyPhotos’ customers will love (including a big one from yours truly!).


ScanMyPhotos             


ScanMyPhotos.com Corporate Headquarters in Irvine, CA

We’re pulling out all the stops with our most popular Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale!


When you buy two prepaid photo scanning boxes, you’ll get the third FREE—including free shipping and the return of your digital media, pay just $19.95 extra for returning your photos. *You MUST order three boxes to instantly receive the third box free. If you only order two boxes, the discount will not be applied. Ready, Set. Order.



Continue reading

8 Travel Photography Tips from the Travel Addicts

If you love to travel, you probably know the Travel Addicts (aka, Lance and Laura), one of the first and most popular travel blogs out there. What started in 2008 as an online journal has morphed into a must-read blog for thousands and thousands of people who are planning a trip or just looking for some inspiration.

 

The Rock of Cashel in Ireland

The Rock of Cashel in Ireland, a great example of an interesting angle. Copyright 2013 Travel Addicts.

They such consummate travelers that, when I asked Lance during a recent phone call about his favorite travel destination, he hesitated. “It’s very difficult to answer that question, having been to somewhere north of 50 countries. If you asked us today, we would say our favorite country is Slovakia and our favorite city is Rome. In Slovakia, you can have truly amazing travel experiences for pennies.”

 

Lance and Laura have honed their photography skills over the years as well, and they were more than happy to share their top 8 travel photography tips:


 

1. Basic cameras are perfectly fine

 

Our biggest tip: You don’t need truly amazing camera equipment to take great photos. iPhones and point-and-shoot cameras can, in a lot of situations, do just as good of a job as a high-end DSLR camera. Laura took a photo during a trip to Ireland last year that has been used by a magazine in Australia, and Dublin bought the rights to the photo to use on their new website. She took it on an iPhone, she didn’t set up the shot – she just saw it at the moment and knew, that’s it.

 

2. Capture candid moments

 

We all take photos of our family in front of, say, the Taj Mahal, but the photos that will be most memorable are the candids. When your child is playing in the sand at the beach and he doesn’t know you’re taking the photo, you have all the time in the world to set up the photo because your subject is so focused on what he is doing. Focus and capture those candid moments because it creates a really compelling image.

 

Red house from Kulusuk in Eastern Greenland

The red house from Kulusuk in Eastern Greenland is a nice example of using color and contrasts (in this case, a texture contrast of wood, water, and rock.) Copyright 2010 Travel Addicts.

3. Focus on colors and contrasts

 

Vibrant colors add a lot to the photo. Even a little bit of blue sky does wonders because it brings in some elements of natural lighting. If you’re taking a picture of something with bright red in it, the red adds a layer to the photo you won’t get otherwise.

 

4. Get off the beaten path

 

Go around the corner, and see what’s there. If you’re walking down the main boulevard in a city, you might not come into contact with those interesting, slice-of-life shots that are truly memorable unless you go off the beaten path.

 

5. The late afternoon light is as good as the early morning light

 

A lot of photographers say that early morning light is best, but we’re night owls. We are not getting up at 5 am to take photos! Late afternoon light can be just as good.

 

If there’s a place we know is going to be really photogenic, sometimes we schedule our day knowing we want to take photos there late in the afternoon.

 

6. Look for very different angles

 

When you’re going to that iconic place – the Eiffel Tower or the Coliseum in Rome – look for a way to make it interesting. Bring a plant or bush into the foreground or offset the photo so the Eiffel Tower is not right in the middle of the frame. It makes that image much more interesting (as you can see in the photo of the Rock of Cashel).

 

Keswick Hall in Charlottesville, VA

The rule of thirds. Taken at Keswick Hall in Charlottesville, VA. Copyright 2014 Travel Addicts.

7. Use the rule of thirds

 

Divide your field of view into nine boxes – it really helps you take better pictures. Shift your horizon so it’s not in the middle of the frame but in the top or bottom, or shift so your subject is to the right or left.

 

8. Learn from the photos you love

 

Continue reading

6 Thanksgiving Photography Ideas You’ll Want to Try This Holiday

thanksgiving photographyTurkey day is almost here and you’ll want to make sure you’re snapping up the memories that will last a lifetime. Thanksgiving photography is an often overlooked aspect of taking pictures.


Each year we find ourselves snapping obligatory photos to mark the event but don’t often go into this special holiday with a photography strategy.

 

This year we encourage you to think outside the box and step up your Thanksgiving pictures with the tips below!

 

Thanksgiving - 6 Thanksgiving Photography Ideas You’ll Want to Try This Holiday Take the perfect turkey picture

 

The main event, the star of the show—of course, the turkey should get its own mini photo shoot on Thanksgiving! Taking an amazing picture of your turkey falls into the food photography category so you’ll want to make sure you’re following tricks for taking excellent food shots.

 

For this, you’ll want to capture sharp details so the lower the ISO, the better. You’ll also want to make sure your shutter speeds are matching your ISO—so somewhere around a 60th of a second will work (but you’ll need a tripod). From there you’ll want to manually adjust your aperture to make sure you’re getting the look you want.

 

Get candid

 

We often think of staged, Norman Rockwell type photos as our go-to photo aesthetic this time of year. But why not to add in a few action shots? Try taking some candid pictures of the host or hostess doing their thing in the kitchen, jokes and laughs shared between family members, or everyone cheering when a touchdown is scored in the big game. These photos will help you remember far more than the dinner as time wears on.

Continue reading

How to Transform Digitized Pictures into Unique Photo Gifts

unique photo giftsUpdated: 10/1/2018***


Once your photos are scanned, digitized, and preserved, it’s time to use those digital files to create unique photo gifts for you and your loved ones.


This truly is the best and most creative part of any photo scanning project.



So to help you get those creative juices flowing, we pulled together a compilation of unique photo gifts we’ve found over the years.


We’ll regularly update this list with new gift ideas on so be sure to keep checking back!


Continue reading

World Traveler, Artist, and Proud Owner of Over 50,000 Print Photos Takes the Scanning Plunge

print photos

You might think you have a lot of print photos sitting in your attic or closet, but how many do you really have? We often hear customers say they are working on scanning 1,000, 3,000 and sometimes even up to 10,000 print photos they have laying around, but this is the first time, in a long time, where one customer shared with us that she has over 50,000 print photos in her possession that she needs to have scanned.

 

And why wouldn’t she? ScanMyPhotos customer Margaret Hoybach has an incredible eye for capturing beautiful things so taking thousands and thousands of pictures over the course of her lifetime was as natural to her as breathing.



Margaret is a born artist. She sees the beauty in so many moments that even aside from her predilection for photography, she is also an accomplished watercolorist. But it wasn’t Margaret’s artistic nature that led her to discover ScanMyPhotos, it was actually a labor of love.



“My son recommended ScanMyPhotos as I was trying to create a collage of photos to use at my 50 year anniversary. I was going through my 50,000 photos and trying to narrow it down to 125 that showcased my life and my husband’s. I’m 73 with three children and six grandchildren. Plus, my husband was military and we were always traveling, so I had plenty of reasons to take lots and lots of pictures. And this was before digital. I’ve kept so many of the print photos and don’t like to throw any of them out so it was like an archaeology dig to find the right pictures for the anniversary party.”


Margaret managed to find the perfect photos for the party and was very happy with the results from ScanMyPhotos.


print photos

Margaret, the artist, in her natural habitat.

“After seeing how wonderful it was with 125 I sent in, I wrote to ScanMyPhotos to thank them for helping me. We were getting close to crunch time for the party when I finally sent them to get scanned but it worked out perfectly. We got the photos back in time and they were wonderful. Everybody loved them. The slideshow we created featured baby pictures of me and my husband up until we got married and then our married life with all kids, including some of the places we traveled.


We kept the slideshow of these photos going on a loop throughout the party. And, before I sent the pictures to ScanMyPhotos, I was one of those people who thought I couldn’t trust anyone with my pictures but I am so happy I trusted ScanMyPhotos because they just did such a great job.”


Continue reading