Photo tips for photographing big groups:
Choose and edit your photo:
Sort through your shots to find the photo or photos that work best for your Christmas card. If you do not have good photo editing software, try Picasa a free download from Google.
Edit your photos: remove red eye, crop out the extra space and straighten the frame, whiten teeth, delete blemishes or stains and brighten colors. Most websites that offer photo cards, allow you to edit photos after downloading them to the site, however Picasa and other photo editing software usually has more options and is can be easier to manipulate.
Add the photo to a pre-made frame card or create digital custom photo cards.
Custom photo cards can be made for as little as .32 each on most sites. Usually, single-sided cards are the least expensive. Before ordering your cards, don't forget to take into consideration the postage cost to mail each card. The cost to mail a standard letter is $0.44. Square or lumpy cards require quite a bit more postage because they have to be cancelled by hand.
Most local stores offer the choice of either downloading photos and creating the card on-line or in-store. Photos can be scanned or taken from a flash drive or CD. Some stores offer same-day, in-store pickup.
Some places offer extra services including addressing, stamping and mailing your cards for you. Others pre-ship your envelopes in order for you to start addressing your envelopes while the cards are being processed. Most sites sell matching return-address labels.
You can even make postage stamps out of your photos. The U.S. Postal Service lists some of the sites that create “design and mail” postage.
Lastly, don't forget your card etiquette. According to “ Holiday Card Etiquette 101 ”, hand sign each card or write a personal note and hand write each address on the front of the envelope. It is okay to use an address label for the return address only. Get started early in order to check this big task off of your “to-do” list. Mailing them early allows your friends and family to enjoy your card all season long.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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