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Old Jun 16, 2010, 2:40 PM   #1
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Default Getting photos developed

I just took my new Canon Rebel XSi on vacation for the first time. When viewing the pics on my computer screen, most of them looked very good (to me, anyway). The colors were vibrant. I adjusted a few in Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 (for things like brightness). After making any needed corrections, I uploaded the photos to Walgreens and placed my order. I have used this store several times before, but this is only about the 2nd time I've used them with my new camera. Anyway, there were about 250 pictures. And, basically, all of the pics were darker and slightly more yellow than they appeared on my computer screen. Since this was a beach vacation, there were many, many shots outdoors and the sky was a beautiful blue. But, in the prints, the sky was subdued (compared to the way they look on my monitor). Also, the bright blue pool water looked greener. Is this a problem with the developing? I was so disappointed. What do you do for developing? I've tried Snapfish in the past but was disappointed with the quality there, too.
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Old Jun 16, 2010, 2:48 PM   #2
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It may be your monitor calibration if you adjusted them using an editor so that they looked right on your monitor (it may be brighter than others with colors off, etc.).

I'd post some downsized samples of the original (unedited) photos, as well as the ones you edited with PSP X2 so that members can see what they look like on other monitors.

Downsize them so that they're no larger than 1024 pixels on their longest side (and 800 pixels is fine), with a file size of no larger than 253KB. Otherwise, the forums software is going to strip out the EXIF information showing camera settings, and recompress the images (making them softer).

As long as they're within within the limits for both file size and dimensions in pixels, the forums software will not modify them. So, make sure to downsize them first, using a JPEG Quality setting of around 80% (or 8 on a scale of 1-10 or 12), and that should keep the file size within limits if you downsize them so that the longest side is no longer than 1024 pixels.

See my comments in the second post of this thread:

How I post a photo to the forum
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Old Jun 16, 2010, 3:15 PM   #3
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Hi Tonya,

To add to Jim's excellent suggestions. Your post comes with a coincidence.

I just called the photo department at the Walgreens store in our area yesterday and talked to the photo tech. I asked him if they do auto corrections on prints by default. He said yes but they can turn off the auto corrections upon request.

He said the best way to insure that auto correction is turned off is to go to the store and to notify the tech before inputing my photos there.

Maybe re-process a few photos this way and see if there's any difference with the ones you already have.

Sky
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Old Jun 16, 2010, 8:25 PM   #4
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Another possibility is that you used the Adobe RGB color space, and the printer didn't. (most of them don't - they assume sRGB) This will definitely cause muted colors and color casts in some situations. The blue skies being muted and the green cast to the water leads me to think this is the case.

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Old Jun 17, 2010, 10:45 PM   #5
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I'm going to try to post some photos. I resized them to 1024 (longest side) and reduced the file size to 250 kb or less. However, that in itself, reduced the quality significantly.

Just an update: In looking back, I didn't change the brightness in all that many. Mostly, I just cloned out some distracting background stuff, whitened teeth, etc. But, I did use the Smart Photo Fix in PSP Photo X2 on a few.....which brightened some, as well as changing the shadows and highlights.

Another update: I contacted the Walgreens store manager. He had me to resubmit a couple of photos and he had them printed immediately. He said they still looked kind of dark. He said he would have them try to lighten them and then mail the order to me. So, I don't know if it's going to make any difference.

Is there any way to ensure that pics print out the way they look on my monitor? It's hard to make adjustments when it might not print out the way it looks.

Anyway, I'll post another reply to this thread with some samples. But, like I said, after resizing them, the quality is drastically reduced. The images now show jpeg artifacts or pixelizing or something. The clarity of the pics Walgreens printed is okay. It's just that they are too dark (for the most part).
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Old Jun 17, 2010, 10:53 PM   #6
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Not so worried about the color (it seems more noticeable after resizing). My main concern is how the developed pictures are dark (especially people's faces). Their faces were not dark on the originals.

Picture 1 is a scan of the Walgreen photo. Notice the extreme darkness of his eyes. I don't think I did any editing on this one.
Picture 1b is my original file (but resized).
Picture 2 is a scan of the Walgreen photo. Notice extreme darkness of face.
Picture 2b is my original file, resized.
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Last edited by tonya; Jun 17, 2010 at 11:02 PM.
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Old Jun 17, 2010, 11:00 PM   #7
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Pic 3 is a scan of Walgreens photo. Very dark. I don't think I edited this one at all in PSP.
Pic 3b is my original file (resized).
Pic 4a is scan of Walgreens photo. Very dark. Brightness was NOT edited in PSP....only teeth whitening used.
Pic 4b is original file (resized).
Pic 4c is a scan of this pic printed on my own printer. The actual computer printed photo did not have the noise you see here. But, you can tell the brightness is much better than the Walgreens one.
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Old Jun 17, 2010, 11:08 PM   #8
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I don't see any EXIF info on the pics I just posted. However, in a different post, Mark 2009 posted a pic of a guy on a motorcycle and I didn't see the EXIF info there, either (even though JimC did....he said he could see the EXIF info). Am I overlooking this info?

Last edited by tonya; Jun 17, 2010 at 11:15 PM.
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Old Jun 18, 2010, 3:46 AM   #9
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i can see what you mean about being dark. in my opinion what these places do is setup the machine from the first print and then just run your job through it they do not look at each print before it is printed.
i would look at your prints and find one that looks good and that was probably the first of your batch. the only way o get good prints is from a proper lab.
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Old Jun 18, 2010, 4:23 AM   #10
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Tonya:

There is no EXIF in your images. So, we can't look at anything like the color space used. Are you sure they were within the maximum size limits before you uploaded them? You should be able to right click on a photo using Windows Explorer (by finding the folder it's in under My Computer), and look at the image properties for file size and dimensions.
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