A Rant About Ready-made Frame Sizes

Looking to frame your digital photograph.

…….Don’t bother with all those ready-made frames you see in all the stores.  They won’t work for you unless you first crop your picture!  Read on.


It’s been 42 years since an Eastman Kodak Engineer named Steve Sasson invented the first digital camera;  and 18 years since Nikon came out with the first DSLR body designed from scratch by a single manufacturer: the 2.7 megapixel D1. Now digital cameras are everywhere from phones to drones,  yet for some reason the people who make all those frames you see at the big drugstores, craft stores, big box stores, etc…have never adopted digital photograph frame sizes.  They still base all of their frames on photograph sizes from the film era; 8 X10 or 11X14. Even a lot of the digital photo organizer software out there still offer only the standard analog photo print sizes that were set way back in the days of the Kodak Instamatic.  It forces you to  crop every digital photo you print so it will fit into those outdated,  ready-made frames you find on the store shelves. You’ll have to go online to find photo labs that will print digital sized photographs. Be sure to search for  “digital sizes” because they also print the old film sizes.

Once you do that, you’ll have, for example, a 12 X 16 print instead of a cropped 11 X 14 but you’ll have to have it custom framed or frame it yourself because the ready-made frames won’t fit. You’d think, after 18 years of commercial digital photography, the ready-made frame business would have caught on.  You’d think!

Thanks for the read, and look. See you next time. Oh, and have a great Holiday Weekend.

Paying Respects

The last of the Azaleas,  a very large Pride of Mobile variety, has finally given up its blooms, much to the dismay of the Tiger Swallowtail Butterflies.  I saw a small squad of them fluttering around the dropped blooms seemingly frustrated at their earlier than normal departure.   Perhaps they were paying last respects.   Needless to say, Spring came very early this year.  We had Azaleas in full bloom in the middle of March.   Not to worry though, the butterflies  have since discovered the bright red and orange Lantana which will bloom into the fall here.  Somehow though, I think they, like me, are eagerly awaiting the Sunflowers.  Several acres have been planted.  We’re hoping they will also bloom ahead of their usual schedule allowing us to make a second planting before September.

Black and White Photography with Digital Cameras.

Most digital cameras allow the user to take shots in monochrome which is to say, black and white.  And of course just about every piece of processing software on the market lets one convert color shots to black and white.  There is one school of thought that says that makes for an impressive black and white image.  I just finished shooting a roll of Kodak Tri-X film this past week (Yes they still make it and its readily available)   and I have to say, no matter how accomplished one is in processing images on a computer, there is no way anyone will ever reproduce digitally the tonality and contrast one can get from top  quality pan film like Tri-X.  If you’re really into black and white images,  pick up a  used film slr, they’re dirt cheap these days, and shoot a roll of Tri-X 400.  I think you will agree and you might have a whale of a time doing it.   See you next time.

Another Film Era Filter


Say hello to a warming filter.  A Tiffen 812 Warming Filter to be precise.  When I bought my 120-400 mm lens from Adorama in New York, an assortment of  Tiffen filters were included as a bonus which included the warming filter.   I already had one in my bag that I used on my Nikon FM film camera for many years.    I had never thought about using it on a digital camera,  always  opting instead to “warm up shots” in post processing.   Even the free Picasa software from Google has a warming effect which works pretty well.  This, however,  has a different look.

For me,  it gives the scene a kind of tuscan or southwestern look as opposed to the baked look that comes in post processing “filters”!     I often see this kind of warm light in the very late afternoon in the waning light of the day as the sun drops to the horizon.    Not something I would use very often but hey, it was free.   See you next time on most of this same blog.