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Top tips to help your children take photos

June 9, 2016
As part of our ‘Focus On Dad‘ Father’s Day campaign, we asked award winning photography blogger Darren Coleshill from Photalife to give us some of his expertise on encouraging your kids to get creative behind the camera. Over to you, Darren!  ”If you look back over your family photos what do they show? What can you see? If they’re anything like ours then they will show the children, on rare occasions they show one parent and the girls, while I’m taking the photos. I honestly can’t remember the last time I appeared in a photo and I certainly can’t remember the last time my wife and I had a photo together! Both my girls are at the age when I want to get them interested in taking photos and personally I think getting children interested at a young age is so important. We all know that children absorb information so quickly when they’re at school, so this is a perfect time. I’m hoping my tips will help you get your children taking photos. I’m not talking about teaching them about ISO, shutter speeds but small tips that will help them take photos they can be proud of. Pick The Right Camera  From experience, picking the right camera is key – there’s really no point in getting them an expensive all singing all dancing camera, but equally a disposable camera isn’t right for them either. A simple basic camera with a zoom and importantly a screen is perfect. Even a phone with a camera is fine. Children need to see what they have taken a photo of and this needs to be instant, not a few days later! Holding the Camera Before you get them to snap away show them how to hold the camera. If they are using a phone then showing them a grip where they hold it in each corner is normally good. Show them what happens if fingers are in front of the lens. No one enjoys looking through photos where little fingers are in the way. Show them beforehand so they won’t get disappointed when you look back at the photos later. Setting up the photo When getting children interested in taking photos don’t bombard them with too much information. The best way to start is to tell them to start by getting everything in the center then they won’t go too far wrong. This is where having a screen is ideal as they can see exactly what they’re taking a photo of. Experiment  The beauty of digital photos and smartphones is that you can take endless amounts of photos and it doesn’t matter. If they get a disposable camera then it’s limited to 24 or 36, which is no good. My tip would be to give them a camera on a day out and just let them snap away. You can then look back over them together and pick out their favourites, or work on different ways they can improve. Get up Close On most cameras there

Father’s Day gift ideas for first time Dads

May 26, 2016
So, it’s his first Father’s Day and you’re looking for an extra special gift to show him how much he means to you & baby. We’ve come up with some of our top picks that we’re sure Dad is going to love…have a read!  Photo blocks Capture three generations in one gift using our Photo Blocks. All you’ll need is 3 photos – one of the newest member of the family looking adorable, another photo with Dad, and finally one with Grandad & baby. Simply upload & add each photo to a Photo Block, choosing the best size to fit the photo, and you’re ready to go. These nifty little blocks can be displayed just about anywhere. Order an extra set & that’s Grandad’s present sorted as well! Personalised mug Whether they’re newborn, or almost a year old – we’re sure there’s been some disrupted sleep in your household. Dad is going to need somewhere to put all that much-needed caffeine, so why not add a photo of your little one smiling away, to remind him that those 5am starts are all worth it. Retro prints Although your baby may not be able to talk yet, but don’t let that stop you writing a little message on some Retro Prints on their behalf. Choose photos of their first smile or the day they were born, or a photo from each month of their 1st year. The best part? You can update these each year as your baby grows – guaranteed to be a gift that Dad keeps a hold of for years to come. 

Top Tips for creating a ‘Dad’ Photo Book

May 22, 2016
Hands up if your family have got boxes & boxes of old photos tucked away in the loft or a cupboard upstairs? There’s nothing we like better than an afternoon spent flicking through old photos & remembering when your Dad still had hair, or wore all of those terrible 80’s tracksuits (or was that just our Dad?) This Father’s Day, we want you to dig out your old photos and give them some love, alongside your new, carefully posed digital photos as well – a great excuse to show how close you still are with your Pa’, or even how much he loves being a Grandad to your own kids! We’re not short on ideas or products to show you how to do this, so we’re focusing on our ‘Dad’ photo book – if you’ve ever thought about creating a photo book for Dad, now is the time. What you’ll need: A selection of photos, old (printed) & new (digital) A DSLR / point & shoot camera – ideally, but a high quality smartphone will work too Access to a computer or laptop (to crop/edit photos) Step 1: Take a look through your older photos and organise them into groups – this will help you to ‘tell a story’ throughout your photo book. We chose photos from old – new, but you could group them based on individuals, so favourite photos from each child, or even photos that suit a certain theme, such as holidays or birthdays. Step 2: For your older, printed photos, you’ll need to use your scanner or camera (or even smartphone set on highest quality setting), to take a photo…of a photo. Once you’ve photographed all of your chosen photos, upload these snaps to your computer so you can crop and edit where necessary. We used Photoshop for this, but you can easily use a free tool like Picasa or Pic Monkey  to crop and edit your photos. Top tip: You can check the quality of your photos using the PhotoBox ‘smiley’ indicator – a green or orange face means the photos will print at good or suitable quality, while a red unhappy face means they are likely to be pixelated. Step 3: Once you’ve cropped and edited photos, it’s time to get organised – the more organised you can be, the quicker the photo book creation process will be. We started by re-naming our photos in the order we wanted to include them in the photo book – do this with your more recent, digital photos as well. Sign in to your PhotoBox account, and begin by creating an album where you will put all of your Dad photo book images. You can do this by clicking on ‘My Account’ > ‘My Albums’ > ‘Create a new album’. Top Tip: Upload all of your photos before you begin creating the photo book, to ensure they are all saved properly. Step 4: Now it’s time to get creating – you have two choices, to add each photo manually, so you can play around

Using your Photo Book Credit – FAQs

April 27, 2016
We know that credits can seem a bit complicated, so we’ve put together this little FAQ to make life that little bit easier for you. How do I use my credits? To use your credit, all you need to do is create the product that you purchased the credit for. There are lots of different book types available; so do double check that you’re creating the correct product for your credit. I opted for Premium features – How do I get them? When creating your product, remember that if you added any premium features to your credit such as premium page weight or logo removal, you need to add those to the book yourself and the cost will be taken off once you reach the basket. These options can generally be found at the end of the creation process. How do I use my credit if it is for more than a 26 page photo book? If you have purchased a credit for a 60 or 100 page photo book, you still need to start with a standard 26 page book and add the pages manually as you go, again the cost of these will be removed once you reach the basket. What happens if I want to have less pages than my credit? If you want to use less pages than your credit is for, don’t worry, that’s completely fine and won’t stop you using the credit. What happens if I want to have more pages than my credit? If you’d like more pages than your credit is for, you are more than welcome to add extra pages but remember that these will be charged at our standard rate. Is postage included? Postage is not included with a credit, you will still need to pay for postage when you checkout after creating your product. If you have any questions at all, just let us know in the comments or get in touch via any of the options on our Contact-Us page  

Welcome to Wedding Season!

April 21, 2016
It’s here PhotBox-ers! It’s time to don your best frocks, finest suits and have that confetti at the ready to watch friends and family say ‘I do!’ So you have the outfit, the bag and the multiple shoe options for the day (depending on the appearance of sunshine.) But what about the gift. Wedding gifts are hard work. We get it. What type of spoons do people like, shall I just give them money? How many forks are too many forks… etc. This is where we come in. A personalised gift can mean so much more to a couple on their wedding because well, it’s personal. Gifts like these can help show family and friends how much they mean to you and are a great way to highlight the best moments from their relationship. After all, wedding days are all about celebrating the love (cue the aww). We’ve compiled a lovely little list to show you some great ways to give the best in personalised wedding gifts. So, when you give your gifts this year, you can sit back and bask in the knowledge that you’ve gotten it all delightfully right. Canvases Our Retro Canvases are the latest addition to the PhotoBox Canvas family and we’re big fans. It’s a lovely way to capture a snapshot and you can even add a bit of your own text (choose the font too) at the bottom. They’re pretty cost effective too (if we do say so ourselves) meaning it’s easy to order 3 and create that perfect little story. Here’s some inspiration to help you on your way! We nabbed some snapshots from our friends’ favourite and most memorable moments as a couple and created this lovely little story to commemorate the day they met, the day he proposed and their best holiday. Wrap them up in some brown paper with a ribbon, a heartfelt note and there you have it – wedding gift perfection! Cushions Our cosy cushions come in 3 varying sizes and are a great way to add a personal touch to a living room or bedroom. There’s a whole range of layouts and themes to choose from so it’s pretty easy to pick the right design for the perfect wedding gift. Again the storytelling option is a great idea. Capture 3 of the couple’s favourite moments and print them on 3 different size cushions – perfect for personalising their lounge. Or, if you don’t think they’ll fancy having their faces on them you can even go for landscape shots of their favourite holidays or locations. We used some lovely landscape shots and a bit of artwork too and created this lovely trio of cosy cushions. They can then all be displayed around the house as perfectly personalised reminders of their romance (aww). Photo Books This is one of our favourites. There’s not many better ways to truly capture a story then by putting it on paper and our Photo Books are no exception to the rule. There’s so