Sunday, July 18, 2010

Nations Best

Ok, ok, so this is not a snazzy post. Its not pretty or whimsical. There are no pictures. It is entirely practical. And yet, it is the solution to a problem I have had for years, and I am just so ridiculously happy about it that I had to share. Do you remember back when cameras actually had film? Although only one in twenty pictures was actually any good (or at least those were about my odds), the great thing was that at least I had a physical copy of that one good picture once my film got developed. Since the invent of the digital camera, I far too often never print out my digital pictures, and instead have these huge files on my computer which, while nice to flip through, lack both the nostalgic fun of flipping through actual pictures and prevent me from having pictures framed around the house. I have tried to solve this multiple ways. Zach and I got a picture printer, which we never use. It is bulky, and always out of one color or another, be it red or green or blue, so the colors come out so funky and weird. And I have considered the local Target photo counter, where I could print up my digital files, but its just not all that convenient. And frankly, in all of these scenarios, the quality is just not what I am looking for. Especially now that we have baby pictures to frame, I want professional quality photos. You know what I'm talking about, right? The ones that almost have a texture to the photograph and are on heavy weight paper. Like the ones in our wedding album. And I want the pictures to be inexpensive. And I want to be able to order just one or two, or twenty or thirty, at a time, depending on my need. Is that too much for a girl to ask? Apparently so, is how I have felt over the years. Apparently so. But all that changed recently when I stumbled across Nations Photo Lab. Now I don't know how many photo labs are in our nation, but I for one believe that this is the best one. So here are my Top Ten Reasons I love, love, love Nations Photo Lab: 1. They have their own software, (called ROES), that you download and that is so easy to use. (Seriously. Easy to use. If I can do it, you can definitely do it). And once you download it, you just upload your photos and click! you can crop your photos, change them to black and white or sepia tones, make them landscape or not... love it. 2. They automatically color-correct your photos for you. Love this. 3. The quality of the pictures they send you are professional quality. Seriously. I just ordered some of Tate and they are everything I could have hoped for. 4. The prices. An 8x10 is only $1.50 or something like that. AND there is no minimum order. 5. Options galore. You can order sheets of wallet-sized photos (perfect for a baby announcement or a holiday card or...) all the way up to huge pictures that are like 40 inches tall. You can have your pictures mounted on foam board or on canvas. You can have them divide your picture up into three different canvases (you know, the ones that hang close together to create one long, broken up picture). They make postcards and calendars and photo blocks... really, the options are endless. 6. They do albums too! 7. If you are a nature photographer (or take lots of black and white pictures of Paris at night), they do those cool, really shiny black and white pictures that you always see in galleries. 8. They arrive super-fast, through the mail. 9. They are a privately-owned small business, which makes me feel so good about sending them my money. They aren't some Kinko's spin-off. 10. The icing on the cake? You know how photo paper says things like "Kodak" on the back? At Nations Photo Lab, you can order your photos so the paper says whatever you want on the back!! This is so fun. Like I could have my photos say "Tate April 2010". Have I convinced you yet? Run... run, I tell you, don't walk... to place an order. I am so, so happy I did.


  1. Genius! I was just thinking about the lack of physical photos the other day, as I browsed my computer files of Annie pictures. I do actually use my photo printer periodically, but they're definitely not professional quality. I'm digitally running to Nations Lab ASAP.

    Also, did you see the article in the Times about various companies that make pictures really big and/or on canvas?

  2. Melissa- I just read the article. What inspiration! I especially love Wizard Print, which it says can make an adhesive of any picture you want and it can stick to the floor. What a fantastic idea for a wedding dance floor. You could dance on a field of poppies (Wizard of Oz, anyone?), or a rolling Italian hillside... the possibilities are endless!