Panoramic Photography Tips

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If bigger is better, panoramic photography is the best! Snapping these larger-than-life pictures is a surprisingly easy trick to ace. Read on for our best tips.

When to use panoramic photography:

Go big on your most memorable occasions. From a long-awaited vacation to your best friend’s wedding, special moments deserve equally special photographs. Commemorate that once-in-a-lifetime trip or the happy couple’s blissful romance with a photo that documents every little detail.

How to take panoramic pictures:

Creating those supersized pictures is a cinch with your smartphone. The standard Camera application on the iPhone makes it easy to scan your scenery for a basic panoramic picture. Looking for more impact? Try an app that takes spherical panoramas:

  • Microsoft Photosynth (iOS, Windows Phone 7.5 and above): This free app stitches together many photos to create a 360-degree view of your surroundings. Photosynth keeps things simple, beeping just before it snaps each photo to take the guesswork out of the process.
  • Sphere (iOS, Android): Record spherical views of your world by hand with this free app. Its super-simple Easy Mode features a viewing circle that acts like a paintbrush, capturing images with digital “brushstrokes” as you pan your environment.

What to do with your panoramic photos:

Whether your panoramic pictures include breathtaking landscapes or emotional champagne toasts, they can be shared without compromise when you create a Premium Lay Flat Photo Book. Display striking panoramic photos across two-page spreads, and enjoy a seamless, uninterrupted view of your top shots thanks to the book’s lay flat binding.

Now that winter is coming to a close and spring is settling in, the changing landscape is providing some great inspiration. What scenic shots have you been snapping this season?

Share Life’s Happy,

Marie

Last-minute Valentine’s Day Gifts

Last Minute Valentine's Day Gifts

Valentine’s Day can sneak up on you like a, er, heart attack. No worries, dear Cupid. Our same-day photo pickup can help you make your Valentine feel special with these really easy, really fast – and really personalized – last-minute gifts.

Scavenger Hunt
Surprise your love with a photo scavenger hunt. Take 10 photos of meaningful items around your house like a vase or unique trinket. Then hide the pics in or under each item, making sure that one image leads to the next. At the end of the hunt after the tenth photo, leave a special surprise such as a love note, chocolates or flowers.

Love Notes
Music makes memories. Go old school and create a “mix tape” for your love of all your favorite songs together. Package the jump drive or CD mix by taping two unique 4×4 photos together for a hands-on touch.

I Love You Because …
Take a selfie holding a piece of paper that reads, “I love you because… .” Next order the pic as an 8×10 (or larger) print, and adorn it in a glass-front frame. Place the frame in your home, and each day with a dry-erase marker, complete the sentence for your Valentine. No sentiment feels better than appreciation.

Wine and “Cheese!”
Snap a selfie with a sign that says, “I love you,” and order it (via your phone or online) in an 8×10 print. Then wrap and attach the photo around a bottle of wine as a romantic gesture for your Valentine’s Day celebration.

DIY Flower Bouquet
Perfect from the kids! Print a dozen of your children’s cutest headshots, and cut out the little faces in circles. Then tape or glue them to the center of construction-paper flowers for a DIY bouquet that will make any family member or teacher smile

Appreciation Calendar
What’s better than photo calendar? A photo calendar with love notes! Each month, add a date night idea and/or messages about why you love your Valentine, or why that person is important. Then the rest of the year, they can celebrate how much they’re loved.

 

XOXO
Lauria
Share Life’s Happy

DIY Valentines Cards for Kids

Save money and get creative with easy DIY Valentine’s Day exchange cards. Your child will steal the hearts of classmates and teachers with these unique and fun personalized greetings.

DIY Valentines Cards : From the Bottom of My HeartFrom the Bottom of My Heart
What you’ll need: Camera, scissors, red construction paper, pen.

  1. Using red construction paper, cut out two dozen hearts about the size of your palm.
  2. Tape the hearts in an inverted triangle on a blank, light-colored wall. Be sure that the lowest point of the triangle begins at the height of your child’s head.
  3. Photograph your little Cupid’s profile in front of the hearts, as s/he pretends to blow them from her/his hands.
  4. Order 4×6 prints for classmates, teachers, and relatives with the sentiment, “I love you from the bottom of my heart” on the back.

DIY Valentines Cards : You're So Sweet

You’re So Sweet
What you’ll need: Camera, pin, lollipops (one for each card).

  1.  Photograph your child, facing forward, with his/her hand in a fist reaching toward you.
  2.  Order 4×6 prints of the image for all of your kid’s Valentines.
  3.  On each print, use a pin to poke a hole directly above and below your child’s fist.
  4.  Weave a lollypop into the hole so it looks like your child is holding it!

Optional: Set the stage by creating a Valentine’s Day background with hearts or a sweet message taped to a blank wall. Or use your digital-imaging skills to add a message like “You’re so sweet!” to the photo.

Jedi tip: For Star Wars fans, replace the lollipops with skinny glow sticks to mimic light sabers! Message (and costume!) may be adjusted accordingly.

 

DIY Valentines Cards : Stuck On You

Stuck on You
What you’ll need: Camera/photo, scissors, pin, pink balloons (one for each card), plastic bags (one for each card), bubblegum (enough for each bag), transparent tape.

  1. Take a cute headshot of your child. (To save time, this could be an image from your camera or phone that you already have and love!)
  2. Order 5×7 prints of the photo for each of your kid’s classmates – plus a couple extra to be on the safe side.
  3. Using a glass or cup, trace a circle around your child’s head. Then cut out the round shape so that your cards become circular.
  4. Blow up pink balloons for each Valentine. Make sure the balloons are smaller than the cards and your kid’s head.
  5. With a pin, poke a hole through though the middle of your child’s mouth on each photo. Then push the balloons through the pinhole so it looks like s/he is blowing a bubble!
  6. Tape plastic bags of bubblegum to each card as sweet treat.

 

XOXO
Lauria
Share Life’s Happy

WalgreensLuv Instagram Contest

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We created 14 photo challenges for our Instagram fans for a chance to win our WalgreensLuv contest.

All you have to do is to post a picture of your interpretation of the challenge for that day (day 1 starts February 1st) and include our hashtag (#WalgreensLuv) in each post.

We’ll choose our favorite photo each day. The lucky winners will receive 10 free prints and see their winning images reposted on the Walgreens Instagram page.

But don’t stop there. One lucky winner will be chosen at random to win a $250 Walgreens gift card! (Hint: The more challenges you do, the more chances you have to win the grand prize.)

Check out the daily challenges below. Each is open to interpretation, so let’s see your creativity!

 

Feb. 1 – One true love

Feb. 2 – Besties

Feb. 3 – Colorful

Feb. 4 – Be Mine

Feb. 5 – Sweet Tooth

Feb. 6 – Beautiful

Feb. 7 – Hearts

Feb. 8 – Smoochy Face

Feb. 9 – Puppy Love

Feb. 10 – Something Red

Feb. 11 – Warm Fuzzies

Feb. 12 – Love Notes

Feb. 13 – Cliché V-Day

Feb. 14 – Valentines

 

Good luck! The contest ends on Valentine’s Day. Click here for official rules.

XOXO

Winter Photo Tips

Outdoor Photo Tips

So maybe you’ve reached this post in vain because you actually have tried to take pictures of that pure white, shiny snow. Taking pictures in snowy scenery could leave your pictures looking dull, flat and underexposed due to light-reflecting off the snow. Here are some tips to make sure that your winter wonderland is everything you hoped for and more:

First things first: Set your white balance.
When your camera lens “sees” snow, its white color can throw off the balance. This means that your pictures might turn out too dark or blurry. Fix this by adjusting your camera’s manual controls to adjust the white balance until your camera’s screen of snow actually looks white.

Enjoy the extra light!
You might find that there is more sunlight during the morning and late afternoon. This is great for having those crisp white pictures but be careful. With the bright snow and ice reflecting the light, your pictures could look washed out. Take advantage of the light. Aand speaking of…

Get flashy.
It might seem weird in such brightly lit scenery but it works to turn on your flash. The flash actually balances out the light off the snow. It will fill in the darker areas, so your pictures will look as bright as can be!

Add in some color.
Everything looks better with a splash of color, am I right? Winter’s white horizon is the perfect backdrop for anything with contrasting colors and shapes. Take photographs of your subjects in bright clothing or just capture the beautiful landscape.

Lastly, pack a spare battery.
Batteries lose power more quickly in cold weather. Make sure to bring an extra battery with you so you won’t miss that perfect shot. Just make sure to keep it in your pocket so it stays warm.

When you’re finished, remember to get your Prints from your nearest Walgreens location. They can even be ready in as little as an hour. Happy shooting!

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha

Refresh Your Apartment on a Budget

Apartment Decor Ideas

January is the best time of the year to revamp your apartment. New year, fresh start and seemingly brand-new living quarters. But it is after the holidays so money might be looking a bit tight right now. Not to worry. Photo by Walgreens has cultivated some quick (and cheap) ways to upgrade your space.

  • A really interesting or striking art piece will add depth and character to any wall. Obviously, the bigger, the better so you might want to invest in an art piece that will serve as your focal point in the living area. Try putting up your favorite landscape on a 16×20 Canvas Print. And if in doubt, everything looks instantly classier in a black frame.
  • And speaking of living rooms, you can easily update your couch with personalized Pillow Shams. Take detailed pictures of nature or the city and use them to decorate the pillows. Black and white makes everything look instantly chic, not to mention matches any color scheme.
  • Make your pictures spotlight worthy by buying new frames for your favorite photos. Limited funds? Look to garage sales or swaps to find ones to paint.
  • Every morning, it’s pretty tough getting out of bed during these cold winter months (we all struggle). Well, I’m making it a little bit harder for you. Put your best scenic photo on a Sherpa Fleece Blanket. It makes for a great throw blanket or just a nice addition while curling up to watch TV.
  • The most clutter probably builds up at your desk. Keep office supplies to a min and keep the essentials in a Desktop Organizer. That way, everything you need is handy!
  • Add don’t forget to add in some greenery! Plants always liven up any area. Afraid you might lead to your poor potted friend’s demise? No worries, a cactus has the lasting power you need!

Don’t hesitate to use these tips for your large home as well!

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha

Organizing Your Photos and Videos

Ideas for Organizing Photos and Videos

Of course like anyone in the world, you have photos everywhere: regular prints, on your digital camera, your iPhone®, your laptop, a few files from your webcam and maybe even on your tablet. They’re everywhere! It seems like you have thousands and thousands of photos and the scary part is, you’re probably right.

It can be really daunting to try to organize all your photos and put them in one spot. Need some help? No worries, here are some easy ways to get your photographs in order (and keep them that way)!

1. Consolidate all your photos in one spot
It’s hard having your photographs everywhere. Plug in all your devices and add your photos to your laptop or desktop computer. For your hard copies, make them digital copies by scanning them into your computer or bringing them your nearest location to be added to a Photo CD.

2. Group your photos by year and months
Now that all of your photos are in place, start grouping the photos by each year. Once you get the photographs into the correct year, then create a folder for each month at a time. If you can recognize a special event such as a birthday or holiday, this will make sorting pictures a little easier. This could take some time, especially if you are downloading multiple folders from multiple devices so don’t be compelled to finish in one sitting.

3. Edit, edit, edit
Once you have all your photos in their corresponding months, it’s time to pick the best ones. This is probably the toughest part of all! Try to narrow it down to only the best shots so you know you’ll appreciate every single photograph. Remember: quality is always better than quantity! This will make it easier for the next step…

4. Print only the best
Photo book time! Now it’s simple to go by occasion or year for each book. For first birthdays or milestones, you might want to choose a book like our 8.5×11 Custom Cover Photo Book. Something a little more special like finally getting all of your wedding photos together? Get a classic and high-quality book like the 11×14 Lay-Flat Photo Book.

5. Pack ‘em up.
For all your hard copies, make sure to organize them in the exact grouping as you did on your computer. Label a photo album or large box with the year and multiple makeshift envelopes of each month. Just fold a piece of cardstock almost in half, with the back overlapping the top like a file. On the top, write down the month and year and on the front, write down the important events of each photo grouping. This will make finding hard copies easier. Don’t forget to add your Photo CDs to the mix as well!

Don’t get overwhelmed by trying to do this all in one day. You might find that it takes a bit of time, so set mini-goals for this project. Keep a checklist so it’s easy to pick up where you left off and in no time, you’ll have organized and ready to go!

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha

How To: The Perfect Maternity Photos

Unique Maternity Photo Ideas

We’ve all seen those photos in our mailbox or our Facebook page… those professional maternity photos from a family member or loved one. You might have even gotten the  “daddy kissing mommy’s exposed belly in black and white”. Or even the “daddy’s hands form a heart over the belly button”. There’s nothing wrong with these photos, it’s just that we’ve seen them all a thousand times. It’s time to get some new types of photos in the mix.

Here are some new ideas for celebrating your little one before he or she arrives.

What should I wear?
This is probably the most common question that every mother asks before she gets her pregnancy photo taken. Clingy fabrics work best because we know who the star is: the bump! Form-fitting fabrics also flatter the mom-to-be. Also, let the ensemble correspond with the location. Bright room means fun patterns, outdoors could mean neutrals. Just make sure the dad complements mom but don’t get too matchy-matchy!

Get creative with different angles.
You don’t necessarily have to be in the middle of a daisy field or a photo studio to make a good photograph. Just make sure you always pick the angles that flatter the mother best. Getting high up and shooting down elongates the subject’s body and creates a slimming portrait.

Add in some props.
You might be a bit befuddled to decide on what props to use, but it’s really up to you! What’s your personality? What kind of pictures do you want to have? Would you like classic black and white or bright colors and toys with the kids? You could bring your favorite baby outfit or accessory and then take pictures with the baby wearing it once he or she is born. Think about this before the session and you can decide what you would like to bring, if anything.

7 is the key number.
Well, “7 months” that is. By the 8th or 9th month, the mother is at her largest and might just feel downright uncomfortable posing for photos. You want her naturally smiling and happy about these photos, not clenching her jaw, anxiously awaiting them to be over as soon as possible.

Pick a Location!
If you don’t have the funds for a professional studio shoot (saving money for the baby!), you can always opt for your home. The living room or a bedroom is always a good choice. They’re the easiest to clean, have the most space as well as natural light.

Don’t forget the others!
Whether they are older or younger siblings or the old pooch, everyone in the family is excited for the new addition. You don’t have to put them in every photo but make sure to add them to most snapshots. They are all a part of the big family as much as the upcoming baby.

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha

DIY: Creating a Photo Time Capsule

Making a time capsule is a great way to celebrate the New Year while preserving the past. It’s also a fun-filled activity for the whole family. Here are the quick and easy steps on making a photo time capsule!

All you need are:

DIY Time Capsule

Grab your best 4×6 Prints or 4×4 Prints from Instagram, mason jar and glue. You’ll only need a few pictures for this project. Take each photo and line the inside of the jar. Make sure that the photos face the middle of the jar so you won’t be able to see its contents from the outside.

When you finish, toss in some of your favorite things to remember: movie or amusement park tickets, letters to your future self, small toys or even the front page of your local newspaper. When you’re done, pick a special closet in the house to store your capsule. Mark down when to open your capsule and you’re ready to go!

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha

New Year’s Resolutions to Add to Your Calendar!

Custom New Year's CalendarsHappy New Year! ‘Tis the season for new beginnings, big changes… and calendars. Yes, calendars. You can’t start 2014 without a Calendar. You might just want to buy a puppy-themed calendar but it’s pretty easy to make it your own!

Here are some popular themes to consider when customizing your Calendar:

  • Trying to lose weight this year or just get healthy? Make yourself a motivational 11.5×5 Planning Calendar. Plug in your starting weight, add in some “you can do it” and “way to go” messages and realistically plan what your goal weight will be by the end of the year. Maybe add in a picture of a tropical beach or a sleek new dress to keep you going strong throughout the year.
  • You’re finally engaged to your true love. Have fun counting down the days to your nuptials with the 11.5×14 Wall Calendar. Pop in text, special occasions, anniversaries and other photographs to commemorate your upcoming wedding. Make sure to add in reminders of your first date along with sweet messages to each other.
  • Planning a big vacation next year?  Put up pictures of your dream destination in a Collage Calendar Poster. Adding in a couple of notes for which places to visit should help build the anticipation (as well as reminders to print your photo book after the trip).
  • If there’s something that everyone can relate to, it’s saving money and avoiding debt. It could seem like a monstrous task but writing easy, daily steps always helps. Try putting those goals in an 8.5×11 Wall Calendar. That way, you can see your daily/monthly goals every day and stay on track!

And don’t fret if you start a little late. You can start your calendar at any month!

Share Life’s Happy,
Taneisha