My film is jammed in my camera. What should I do?
Bring the camera into the lab. If you are on vacation, go to a local lab and ask them to remove the film in the darkroom. Trying to do this at home usually fogs the film.
Why is my roll of film double exposed?
Some cameras will leave a small leader of film outside the canister after rewinding. When in a hurry, a photographer will accidentally reload the already used roll. When the roll is run through the camera again, pictures are shot over pictures. If your camera does this, get in the habit of rolling all of the film into the canister after the roll is rewound.
How do I know if my film has been used?
An experience technician will be able to look at the leader of the film and make a judgment call as to its being used or not. However, even the most experienced technician can't be 100% sure. If there is any doubt, have the roll processed. If the roll is blank there will be no processing charge. If the roll has been used, you will have saved pictures that otherwise would have been lost.
Why is my film blank? The counter was counting!
When film is not caught correctly on the take up spool of the camera, most camera counters will count up anyway. Most of the time blank film is a result of miss-loaded film. On rare occasions, a shutter malfunction may be the problem. Be familiar with the sounds of your camera in order to catch any potential problems immediately.
Why do my children have red-eyes?
Red-eye is caused by the flash bouncing light off the retina of the eye and recording on the film. The same problem comes up with your pets as green-eye or blue-eye. This can be corrected by, using a remote flash, or by making the room brighter.
I can see the top of my child's head in the negative. Why did it get cropped out in the photo?
While printing photographs all printing machines "bleed" a small amount of image off the edges of the photo paper. This is how a borderless print is created. Printing with borders will create the same output due to the way the sharp edges of the print are created. Make sure to allow some extra space above the top of heads or any other subject you want completely in the picture.
Why do the pictures in my child's classroom have a green tint to them?
Film is balanced to natural daylight. Florescent and sodium lights produce light that is greener than daylight. This can be corrected by using your flash and get as close as possible to compensate for florescent lights.
My 4x6 print looks sharp. Why does my enlargement look blurry?
Before you order an enlargement, ask our technicians to examine your photo, and if it can be made into an acceptable enlargement. Ask for an 8X Lupe to look at your original print. Viewing through the Lupe will show you how much detail is in the photo before you order the enlargement.
Why are my pictures dark and grainy?
This is caused from under exposure. Not enough light was available for your subject when the picture was taken. Try higher speed film, and get closer to your subject. Check your camera settings to make sure the camera is set correctly for the film you are using.
Why are my pictures flat in contrast, light and have bad color?
This is caused from over exposure. Too much light was available for your subject when the picture was taken. Try a slower speed film and check your camera settings.
Why is so much cropped off an 8x10? My 4x6 print had everyone in it!
To create a full frame enlargement from a 35mm negative or 4x6 print an 8x12 enlargement must be made. When shooting a group of people, anticipate an enlargement opportunity, by allowing some space on each side of the group to fit in an 8x10.
Should I ever use my flash outdoors?
Yes! When photographing people with harsh shadows from the sun, turn your flash on, and get close. Your flash will fill in shadows and put highlights in the eyes of your subjects.
What is backlighting and how do I fix it?
Backlighting is when the light behind the subject is brighter than the subject. Common problems are shooting indoors with a window behind your subject. This will create an underexposure of your subject. Make sure to turn on your flash when bright windows or other light sources are behind your subject.
What is that glare in my pictures when I photograph out a window?
This would indicate that your flash has fired. Before you take a picture look for glass surfaces and anticipate how they will reflect light from your flash. When shooting through windows of cars, or tall buildings, set your camera to infinity focus. Otherwise the camera may focus on the window, making the subject out of focus.
Do I need a flash at sporting events?
If you are going to be within the range limits of your flash, yes. However if you are in the grandstands, you will get better pictures by using high-speed film and turning the flash off. This will only work if the lighting at the event is bright enough. Practice is the best way to learn.
The sky was blue when I took the picture. Why is it white in the photograph?
When exposing correctly for the subjects often the sky will be overexposed. In the printing process, we will expose for the subject leaving the sky white due to the sky being overexposed
Why doesn't a reprint exactly match my original print?
The combination of photo paper, chemicals and printing equipment create a great number of variables that will cause color and density shifts. We can match prints; however, there will always be slight differences. As we continually update the light balance of our printers, rotate our production inventory of paper and chemicals, a shift in color and density does occur. We suggest to order reprints and enlargements as quickly as possible in order to match the color of original prints.
I need to copy a color exactly. Why doesn't the picture match the real color?
Photographic film and paper have a smaller color gamut that witch our eyes can see. Therefore, some colors are simply not capable of reproduction due to the range of colors the paper can produce. If you have a specific color to match, bring in the sample and explain how you want to use it. We usually can find a solution to any color matching challenge.
The wall behind my subject is white. Why does it look dark and slightly off color?
This discoloration is caused by light conditions due to the intensity of the flash. If the subject in the foreground is exposed correctly, the intensity of the flash will fade off as it travels past the subject. This leaves the wall underexposed, and therefore darker than the subject.
Is the drugstore photo labs and wholesale photo labs the same as a specialty lab?
No. Even though the equipment may look the same, specialty lab technicians receive extensive training to operate the processing equipment. The training also includes high levels of photography, and computer technology. We don't stop there; we also train our staff to ask the right questions of our customers to identify and diagnose the best imaging solutions.
I love black and white. What film do I use?
With today's technology, black and white can very easily be printed from color negatives or color digital files. We also carry black and white film that processes through our color processor and provides excellent results. Traditional black and white is also available. We carry a full line of specialty films.
Why should I bring my digital photos to a Lab? I can print them at home!
It is fun to run a few prints at home. Don't for get about the value of your time invested, inks, paper and frustration. The biggest advantage of our lab processing your prints is we use photographic paper that will preserve the image for 100 years. The cost is about the same as printing on high-grade paper at home, and we do all the work. It is a great value and so easy.
How do I know if my digial camera is set correctly for high quality photographs?
A digital camera with at least 3 mega pixels can produce up to a 5x7. The camera should be set on its highest quality settings with the least amount of compression. The end use of the image is very important. It is easy to downsize a digital image to serve a need of a smaller file, however it is very difficult to increase the amount of data acuratly from a small digital file to make it larger. We suggest you shoot several different resolutions of the same image and have them printed in order to accurately judge the capabilities of your camera.
I deleted a digital image by accident. What can I do?
Stop using the media. There is software available that can recover digital files that have been deleted. Don't panic the digital image is still on your media. Recovery software works by extracting the file form the internal data structure of the media. Free evaluation software is available on the Internet.
I have a digital camera, but my pictures are not as clear as they should be.
Check the quality and compression settings on the camera. Make sure they are creating the largest file possible and check your white balance. Pictures will be off color when the white balance is set for the wrong white point.
What is white balance and how do I set it correctly?
White balance is a registered reference point of white light for digital and movie cameras. The color of white changes due to the light source that is reflecting from objects. Incandescent light will produce a harsh yellow cast and florescent light will produce a green hue. By adjusting the camera's reference point, these color problems are avoided. Practice white balance with your camera before an important event. By using it correctly, your pictures will be color balanced under almost any lighting conditions.