Since I spoke about digital cameras, I realized there were a couple of digital newbies out there, so I decided I would post some info on great ways to order prints for your digital photos and to store your photos for others to see.
One of the easiest ways to get the most out of your digital photos is to upload them to one of the several on-line photo services that exist. I myself use two separate services. One is Club Photo, and the other is Ofoto. Both services are very good, and each has their benefits. The gist of any on-line photo service is that you are allowed to upload your photos, and then share them with others or buy prints and other photo related items. Items include everything from framed photos, lockets, mugs and mousepads to food related items. Cookies, cakes, suckers, you name it, you can get your picture on it. That all being said, there are some differences in on-line services. I’ll start with Ofoto.
Ofoto is owned by Kodak and is a free service. You can upload your photos using a web browser or the free tool they provide. Once the photos are on-line, you can place them in various albums and allow your friends to come and see them. Being a Kodak company, the prints you order are gorgeous. They also have great and fairly fast service. On average their prices for items are higher to make up for the service being free. Also, they don’t allow any way for you to download full resolution copies of the originals. So as a backup service it’s not a viable option. Also, only Ofoto members are allowed to view your photos. So, if Uncle Bill wants to view the photo album, he has to sign up for a membership
My other favorite service is Club Photo. Club Photo will allow you to post pictures to share for free, but to really get the full benefits, you have to get a gold or platinum membership. The memberships do several things for you. For your yearly fee, you get discounts on all purchases as well as more permanent storage space. You also get a bunch of prints free, as well as some album software. Those are all minor however to the ability to download your full-resolution images. Now this is a setting you can set yourself. You can either allow or disallow the full-rez downloads of your photos. For serious photographers, this is a huge deal. They can still share their work at lower resolution, they can download the full-rez pictures AND they can limit people from ripping off their work. To me this is worth the price of admission alone. It’s also an on-line backup of your full-resolution images. Lastly, to allow people to see your pictures, they don’t have to become a member. So unlike Ofofo, your friends can see your pictures without signing up.
Both have their place and on-line services like this are an invaluable tool in any digital photographer’s toolbox. If you are getting into digital photography, do yourself a favor and check these services out. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.