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2014-04-01

Tips for printing great quality photos at home

Nothing illustrates love and happiness better than a good family photo sent to your loved ones, especially when it’s during the holiday season. Frame those special moments and printouts to share those memories while creating new ones. In the sense of giving, why pay hundreds of the dollars for professional-quality images from a photographer, when you can save hundreds of dollars by printing the same quality photos at home with a basic printer? Make it a group activity, and a new family tradition, to take, edit, and print out your pictures together. Here’s what you need:

A Camera

This is a no brainer! You want to take and edit pictures? You’re going to need a digital camera. If you don’t already have a camera, take your time and purchase one that will allow you to take a great picture. If you’re buying online, look at sample images from the cameras manufacture’s website to get a clear example of what the photo quality will be like. If you’re buying in store, try to go through the different settings. Sometimes the default settings won't give you the best quality. Experiment a little by actually using the camera and get use to the settings.

A Photo Editing Software

If you don’t already have editing software installed on your computer, download Photoshop for a free 30-day trial. Keep it simple if you’re not experienced in editing images. Learn the basics, such as the retouching tools along with the crop and slice tools. Those alone will help you adjust your photos to your liking. You have 30 days from the moment you download the free trial to add any outside objects or images to make you photos look unique and interesting. Make it a fun activity and try to include the ideas of the entire family.

The Right Printing Paper

Printing your photos with the right paper is probably the most significant factor when you have quality in mind. It’s a very important decision to make in regards to what type of photo paper you should use. Do you want a glossy look for your photo? Or do you prefer a more subtle slight gloss finish? Let’s compare each type of paper in order for you to make the best decision:
  • Glossy paper gives a shiny and a fancy, high-quality look to your photos. The colors also appear in a way that makes them pop with a vibrant look. However, glossy photo prints "shiny" attribute can produce a glare, making them difficult to see from certain angles. They’re also more susceptible to smudges and finger prints when being handled.
  • Matte paper produces nice quality prints but does not have that vibrant color finish. Matte paper is not vulnerable to being marred by fingerprints and it produces a non-glare photo. Types of matte inkjet paper include photo quality matte, premium (professional) grade, double-sided matte, and semi-matte.
  • Lustre is considered by most a combination between glossy and matte, and has a slight gloss with a subtle, often pearl-like texture. It’s not as shiny as glossy, but not as flat (dull) as matte finish paper. Most people use lustre paper to print out portraits or wedding photos because of its textured and high contrast finish. 
A Printer

Let’s face it; unless your printing load consists of novels or pages after pages of documents, you most likely have an inkjet printer at home. On the contrary, if you do have a high printing load and you’re using LaserJet, all is good; you can still print out your photos, but don’t expect them to have the same quality as if you were using an inkjet printer. Fact is, Inkjets print photos much better. But, it’s also fair to say that laser jets have come a long way in recent years. Many brands are able to print out equal if not better quality photos. Basically, an Inkjet is better and a LaserJet is good enough.

The ComboInk family is committed to saving you money and making sure you have fun doing it.  With these great tips turn any event or celebration into a lasting memory you can share with your loved ones. Consider it a new part of your family traditions. Remember to frame those special moments and capture the memories. So “take a picture, it last longer.”

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