August 26th, 2015

International Bacon Day Is Coming to London Drugs

Bacon Mugs at London Drugs

International Bacon Day is coming to LD  September 5th!

Ahhh, bacon. The most obsessively-loved food in existence (not least, among obsessive users of the internet).

Bacon: You can bake it, microwave it, boil it, or fry it. You can weave it into baskets and make taco shells out of it. It can be crumbled into salads, added to sandwiches, folded into pancake batter, sprinkled over salads, and arrayed alongside eggs and toast.

Unlike Wendy’s (the Baconator), KFC (the Double Down family), and other fast-food shops in an arms race for cardiovascular disaster tactical bacon supremacy—scientists are working on a vegan version, made of seaweed. Alas,  it’s the exception that proves the rule: even vigilant health nuts think less of a life that has no bacon in it.

It’s only natural that the pork strips now have a global day of recognition. International Bacon Day is the first Saturday before U.S. Labor Day—falling this year on September 5th. The celebration’s fifth year is a day for people the world over to revel in good-natured kitch, mountains of pork, and, ahem, bacon-related merchandise.

Did we mention that London Drugs Photo Lab is set to help you celebrate Bacon Day in style? How, you ask? By printing photos with a bacon border—free. And by offering limited-edition bacon coffee mugs—a memorable morning gift for the maple-smoked, thick-cut lover in your life.

Don’t forget to tag @LondonDrugs on any bacon-themed social posts for a chance to win a prize. Happy Bacon Day, Canada!



August 26th, 2015

10 Instagram Accounts That’ll Make You Proud to Be Canadian

bc_pinterest-board

We never get tired of double-tapping photos of Canada’s majestic scenery. So why resist? To celebrate the growing popularity of #beautifulcanada on Pinterest (above), we’ve decided to collect our 10 favourite Canadian photographers posting to Instagram. Follow them and just wait for the magic to hit your feed.

1. Hannah Keiver

A photo posted by @hannahkeiver on

Vancouver-based Hannah Keiver uses her feed to demonstrate her love for adventures and the outdoors. Think epic mountains and sunshine.  READ MORE



August 15th, 2015

Happy World Photo Day 2015!

25% off gallery wraps. One day only—World Photo Day, August 19th. Celebrate by putting your best photo on your favourite wall.

25% off gallery wraps. One day only—World Photo Day, August 19th. Celebrate by putting your best photo on your favourite wall.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…if you’re a photography fan. Yes, August 19th is fast approaching and everyone at the Photolab is already on pins and needles. If you’ve never heard of World Photography Day, you can get all the relevant details from last year’s blog posts (parts one and two). If you have heard of it but haven’t visited the official website since last year, it’s recently undergone a total responsive redesign and looks more beautiful than ever, and the galleries have tons of new, incredible, breathtaking photos—all uploaded by site members, as you may remember.

Speaking of which, if you didn’t upload in a previous year—heck, even if you did—this is your opportunity to display one of your best photos proudly among those from some of the world’s most talented and passionate photographers. Simply register on the site or log in with your Facebook account and go from there; don’t be shy, and above all, don’t delay—as the gallery is only open for upload from Aug 19-25. Just to give you an idea of what they’re looking for, I’ve reprinted their Tips for Submission here:

  • You can only upload 1 (one) photograph to the gallery
  • Choose carefully as your entry cannot be changed after submission
  • Your photo must be a minimum of 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 megapixels)
  • Your high resolution image isn’t made publically accessable
  • Share your story – Your photograph is more powerful with a story
  • Fill in your profile – People want to relate with more than a picture
  • No Watermarks – If you have a watermark on your image you will not be considered for our photobook
  • We encourage you to capture your image between Aug 19-25 but will accept a photograph captured earlier in the year
his is an uncredited photo I found on Facebook, but it perfectly captures the spirit of World Photo Day…stop at nothing to get the perfect photo.

his is an uncredited photo I found on Facebook, but it perfectly captures the spirit of World Photo Day…stop at nothing to get the perfect photo.

Naturally, the Photolab also has some celebrations of its own in honour of this very special day. Select locations throughout BC and Alberta will be offering a series of free workshops devoted to tips, themes and new products that are sure to help photographers of all skill and experience levels improve their craft. Check here for locations and workshop details. In addition, to help give your best photos life beyond an online gallery, the Photolab is also offering 25% off all canvas gallery wrap orders—on August 19 only, just to make your WPD even more special. See your local Photolab for more details.



August 13th, 2015

History of the Camera

The Diana Instant Camera - Black - HP800INST. Just one of a number of film cameras in store

The Diana Instant Camera – Black – HP800INST. Just one of a number of film cameras in store

World Photo Day wouldn’t be complete without properly acknowledging the device that makes photography possible. So let’s start things off with a little camera trivia, shall we? Try to answer this one without looking it up:

What year was the first camera invented?

Now, if your guess was 1839, while you’d be wrong, you would at least get points for reading last year’s WPD post. The actual answer, however, is the year 1888. According to Kodak.com:

The use of photographic film was pioneered by George Eastman, who started manufacturing paper film in 1885 before switching to celluloid in 1889. His first camera, which he called the “Kodak,” was first offered for sale in 1888.

READ MORE



August 10th, 2015

The History of Printing

World’s earliest surviving camera photograph, 1826 or 1827. Still, it’s clearer than many of my photos. Credit: Wikimedia Commons

World’s earliest surviving camera photograph, 1826 or 1827. Still, it’s clearer than many of my photos.
Credit: Wikimedia Commons

It may be a difficult thing to fathom in this age of cloud storage and flash drives, but there was a time not so long ago where printing was an inseparable part of the photographic process. Back in the days of film cameras, when you took your pictures the film then needed to be developed into a negative, and all that effort was kind of pointless unless you were actually going create an actual print from the negative.

Of course, printing from negatives is not dead, by any means; it lives on thanks to lomography and other more esoteric forms of photography. Not to mention my Dad, who recently showed up to a family reunion at a beautiful resort with a disposable film camera, despite the fact that he has a brand new iPad that he knows takes amazing photos yet refuses to so much as experiment with it…but, I digress. My point is that anyone who prefers shooting film for any reason can still have it developed by the Photolab.

READ MORE



August 7th, 2015

Happy World Photo Day: Meet Professional Photographer & London Drugs Photolab Technician, John Goldsmith

As part of our World Photography Day celebrations, we’d like to take you into the lab and introduce you to a very important member of the Photolab team. Meet our Photolab Technical Specialist, John Goldsmith. A photographer himself, John understands the trust involved between photographer and Photolab when printing fine art photography. His passion for photography is what allows him to build that trust with each and every photographer he works with, resulting in beautiful images in the best quality possible.

John knows firsthand the importance of working with an experienced lab tech. He was one of a handful of photographers commissioned to showcase his own photography exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver during the inaugural Capture Photography Festival. He worked with the London Drugs Photolab to print his museum-quality images for the exhibition. Today, as Photolab Technical Specialist, he takes his experience as a photographer and applies it to each and every image he prints in the London Drugs Photolab, building trusting relationships with the photographers he works with.

Speak with one of our expert Photolab Technical Specialists in-store today to find out how you can produce your own museum-quality prints for your walls at home!



August 3rd, 2015

Square Photobooks and Photolab software

photobook1Moments Custom Hardcover Coffeetable Photobooks let you print and share your square photos in a square format. The best thing about them is the fact that they are completely customizable, including the cover. In fact, you may find them so appealing that you’ll want to include some of your rectangular photos, but you don’t to disrupt the neat square aesthetic you’ve got going on. Well, here’s the good news: Using London Drugs Photolab Home Edition Software, you can adjust the framing of your rectangular photos to square—without distorting the actual image.

8”x8” Moments Custom Hardcover Coffeetable Photobooks can be pretty much anything you want, because you create them yourself using the Photolab Home Edition software. They’re a great way to display your square photos.

8”x8” Moments Custom Hardcover Coffeetable Photobooks can be pretty much anything you want, because you create them yourself using the Photolab Home Edition software. They’re a great way to display your square photos.

If you’re not at all familiar with the Home Edition software, please refer to this complete step-by-step overview, or check out the online user guide. There are two ways you can adjust your framing, but I’ll start with what I believe is the most foolproof option:

Frame-first:

From the file menu select Insert>New Picture>Portrait (or Landscape) Picture Frame. A blue box—the ‘picture frame’—will appear on the active page.

Click and hold the corner or the midline mark of the dark blue border. You will see gridlines appear. Using these gridlines as a guide, adjust the frame dimension until it’s square. You can adjust the square frame to almost full-page size.

This toucan shot is actually rectangular, but you can easily crop it into a square with the Photolab software.

This toucan shot is actually rectangular, but you can easily crop it into a square with the Photolab software.

Once your frame is square, drag and drop your selected image from the image browser into the square frame. You will notice the rectangular image now sits neatly inside it.

If you move your mouse to the centre of the image, then click and hold, you can move the image around while the frame stays locked in place. This way, you control the area of the image that will be visible.

Image-first:

If you choose to select a photo as your background, the software automatically crops it to square for you. (See that warning icon in the turtle photo? That’s the software telling me the image isn’t large enough and may not print well as a result. Just more user-friendliness from the Photolab software!)

If you choose to select a photo as your background, the software automatically crops it to square for you. (See that warning icon in the turtle photo? That’s the software telling me the image isn’t large enough and may not print well as a result. Just more user-friendliness from the Photolab software!)

The other method, for those of you who fancy yourselves to be freewheelin’ drag-n-drop experts, is to drag the image onto the page in its original rectangular dimensions, then go about adjusting the frame to square as described above in step two. Easier if you’re good at drag-n-drop, or if you happen to be using one of those stylus-tablet contraptions instead of a mouse. Otherwise, I find it tends to be the more imprecise method.

Or, if you want the image to go right to the edges of the page with no border at all (a.k.a. ’full-bleed’ in graphic design jargon), simply drag your image from the image browser onto the page, and when the ‘How to Drop?’ menu appears, select Single Page Background. Note, however, that this method doesn’t allow you to move the image around.

The Photolab Software is designed to be as intuitive and user-friendly as possible. Of course, if you’d nonetheless prefer to have an actual human being help you build the square book of your dreams, stop by your local Photolab where a technician will be happy to show you the ropes.



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