April 1st, 2016

#LDFotocon is back! Apr 16 – June 11


This is a wonderful time of year to be a photography lover, whether pro or amateur. First of all, May is Photography Month. It’s a celebration that’s been gaining momentum around the world the past few years and 2016 promises to be bigger than ever. As always, the Photolab and the entire London Drugs organization will be doing their part to share the joy with as many people as possible.

Which brings me to the subject of this post: London Drugs is once again bringing back #LDFotocon to help photography lovers celebrate Photography Month. In fact, since last year’s #LDFotocon events were so successful, we are expanding LDFotoCon to more select London Drugs locations as well as having workshops to celebrate Photography Month in all other stores.

In case you missed it, #LDFotocon is a series of informative workshops led by a wide range of ‘Subject Matter Experts’ as they’re formally known,  including:

  • London Drugs Photography, Photolab, Computer and Electronics experts
  • Camera vendors from all the top brands
  • Retouching and colour management experts, and more.

Each workshop is an opportunity to increase your knowledge, upgrade your skills, and expand your network of fellow photography pros and hobbyists in your local area. #LDFotocon events also offer a chance to preview the hottest new cameras and related hardware and software products.

Subjects covered in this year’s workshops include:

  • Point-and-shoot photography tips
  • DSLR showcases from the top brands: Nikon, Canon, Pentax
  • Compact system camera (CSC) photography and showcases from top brands
  • Drone photography
  • Mobile made easy: capturing images on your smartphone
  • How to build a Moments photo book or calendar
  • Making a photo mug
  • How to build greeting cards: perfect for Mother’s Day
  • Showcasing your photos on your walls with ultimate enlargements, gallery wraps, aluminum panels and fine art paper options.

There will even be representatives from London Drugs Pharmacy departments providing travel health clinics to prepare you for your next photo expedition.

This year, LDFotoCon events will be running in select London Drugs stores from April 16 to June 11. Check out the #LDFotocon website for dates and store locations, or visit our in-store workshops site to view workshops in all other stores. Attendance is always free, and each workshop offers you an opportunity to grow as a photographer—so feel free to attend as many as you can.  Even if you don’t see a particular subject interest of yours in your local store’s event schedule, keep in mind that each #LDFotocon location will also feature an all-day tradeshow with even more suppliers and store departments involved. In fact, it’s hard to imagine a larger and more comprehensive event devoted to photography—right in your neighbourhood, no less—so make sure you don’t miss it! If you’d like to help spread the word, be sure to use the hashtags #LDFotocon and #MayisPhotoMonth throughout the social media world.

April 1st, 2016

Local Inspirations Artist Gallery

Yes indeed, May is officially Photography Month—and one of its main objectives is to broaden the appreciation and appeal of photography worldwide. It’s also one of the key themes of London Drugs #LDFotoCon 2016. One of the main reasons Fotocon was created was to share the joy of photography with as many people as possible at the community level. Beyond the short term however, its greatest goal is to help local photographers prosper, which is why the Local Inspirations Artist Gallery (LIAG) was created.

Actually, the creator and driving force behind the LIAG was Meghan Shewchuk, Manager of the Ladner Photolab. It all started when a local artist (who also happened to be a co-worker) used the Photolab to print a 12×18” Remembrance Day image he’d created in Photoshop, and he asked her if she’d display it on the store wall. Meghan immediately envisioned the big picture (pardon the pun) and reached out to another local photographer to see if she would be interested in displaying a collection of her prints as well.

Meghan’s initial goal was to use the wall to showcase the various kinds of art prints available from the Photolab, to give customers an idea of how they might look on their own walls at home. However, she soon realized that the true value of such a gallery would be the platform it gives local photographers and artists—to showcase their work to others in the community, and help them gain new clients and grow their business.

Meghan’s next step was to get approval from head office. Her proposal went over so well that not only did she get the OK for her LIAG in Ladner, but they decided to roll it out to every London Drugs location that has the space necessary to create a proper display. And that’s how one creative Photolab manager’s idea to give local photographers a leg up in the community became an ongoing company-wide celebration of photography.

If you’ve never noticed it before, or if you simply haven’t been to your local Photolab in a while, be sure to stop by and appreciate some of the finest photography your community has to offer. Better yet, if you happen to be a professional photographer, digital artist, or even a member of a local photography club—speak to your local Photolab Manager for details about showcasing your work and becoming a local inspiration to others.



Selected images from photographer Karen Maires, whose prints have been featured in the Local Inspirations Artist Gallery at the Ladner Photolab. See more of her work at http://www.mairesimages.com

March 1st, 2016

It’s Time To Build a New Photobook

The holiday season has past. For me at least, it feels like forever ago. New Years, Family Day, Valentine’s Day, all gone. In fact the entire ‘15-16 winter season will have passed before you know it. No question, we’re in a bit of a lull around this time of year.

Which makes it the ideal time for a new photobook.

Makes perfect sense if you think about it: Before long Spring Break will be upon us, then Easter…leading into the May long weekend and then BAM! Summer is here. This little reprieve at winter’s end is one of the few opportunities we have to reflect and look back through the reams of photos we’ve shot and uploaded, and single out the gems that will be even more amazing once turned into a beautiful photobook and shared.

As I describe in a previous post, creating a personalized photobook is easier than ever since the Photolab launched its all-new website and in-store kiosks. If you haven’t checked it out yet, let me say again—this is the perfect time to make a new photobook.

It seems we’ve looked at the new Photolab site on a laptop, a smartphone, and via the new Photolab kiosks; so far, the only device we haven’t covered is a tablet…until now. So, finally, here is what creating a photobook looks like using an iPad:


As you can see, the site design adjusts to any screen size—meaning you can chill out on the couch and create your photobook.


February 29th, 2016

New Easter Templates for Cards and Mugs

It goes something like this: you finish ringing in the New Year, blink your eyes twice and bam! Easter arrives. I believe Einstein theorized that it has something to do with the space/time continuum…or maybe we’re just getting old. Well, the Easter Bunny may be able to quietly ambush you and I, but he can’t sneak past the London Drugs Photolab—whose new website is already spring-loaded (horrible pun, sorry, couldn’t be helped) with a veritable Easter basket full of brand new templates for cards and photo mugs.

Here on the ol’ Photoblog we’ve already covered how simple it is to create stunning and completely original personalized greeting cards using the in-store kiosks as well as the new website, yet they also allow you to make a mug into a masterpiece. And the process is just as simple & convenient, if not more so. Let’s take a look, shall we?



February 3rd, 2016

Make an awesome photo collage with the new Photolab website!

Do you remember how you used to have to put collages on the wall? How you’d have to shop around for a frame with the precut matte—the perfect precut matte? And then if you couldn’t find one that would fit your prints, you’d have to choose new prints that would fit the precut matte? Of course, that’s if you want to the prints to be underneath the matte. If you wanted to place the in your prints on top, then you’d have to very carefully glue them, making sure each and every print was glued on perfectly straight…

Well, those nightmarish days are over! Thanks to the Photolab’s new, incredibly user-friendly website and in-store kiosks, making collages has never been simpler or more fun — or more customizable. To show you what I mean (and since I’m a total fan-boy of the new site because its simplicity makes it so easy to do demonstrations), here is a demonstration of how to make a collage from home using the website:


Start by going to the new & improved, totally revamped Photolab website. Choose the PRINTS category to select Posters & Collages.


February 3rd, 2016

Make a Personalized Valentine’s Day card using the new in-store kiosks!

Valentines Day 2016 will soon be upon us, and once again the Photolab is here to bail you out—only this time, like never before! If you’ve previously visited this space you are no doubt well aware that personalized greeting cards, created with actual photos that have true meaning to the recipient, are absolutely perfect for hitting it out of the park on occasions such as this. Now, thanks to the Photolab’s new in-store kiosks and website, these Valentine’s Day life-savers are more customizable than ever. Allow me to demonstrate the ease of making a personalized greeting card using the brand-spanking-new in-store kiosks available at all London Drugs locations:

Since these fancy kiosks are so new, I thought I would demonstrate how to use them to make a greeting card. So let’s do as the button says and get started!


January 6th, 2016

The future of online photo ordering is here!

This time of year there are plenty of things to look forward to… of course, there are all the cultural/religious/statutory holidays and the gifting and the feasting and general merrymaking associated therewith…. for nerds like me, this year there is also a certain movie release featuring wookies and lightsabers, which our nerd-hearts-and-minds have been anticipating since around March. However, for the good people at the Photolab and London Drugs as a whole, as well as anyone in Western Canada with a passion for the art of photography,  there is one more thing—one more big thing—to be excited about:

A brand new Photolab website and in-store kiosk—after months and possibly years in careful planning and development—are ready to roll.

The new website offers more creative ways to order not just prints and enlargements but fine art prints, photo gifts and all the Photolab’s products. It will allow you to securely start and finish your projects here, there, or anywhere – and there is no need to download software. I was fortunate enough to be granted a sneak peak at the ‘beta’ site to preview it for this post.


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