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Edit Photos

I need to hire someone to edit photos.  I know about eLance.  What others are you guys using with success?  I'm also trying to figure out whether to pay per photo or time.
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2 Solutions
Paul SauvéRetiredCommented:
To what extent do your photos need to be edited?

Have you tried to find someone to do this work locally?
hrolsonsAuthor Commented:
Usually just crop and adjust color balances/hue/brightness.  Sometimes take out some scratches.  Each picture should only take about an average of 3 minutes.

Yes, I used to have an employee doing this for $15/hour.  I think that I can find better quality and less expensive, overseas.
Paul SauvéRetiredCommented:
Just a suggestion. If you have a local technical school that teaches graphic design, you could ask a professor if they have a intern program OR if he has students who are seeking part time work.
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EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
students who are seeking part time work.
Good idea .... Stick a note up on the noticeboard.
Paul SauvéRetiredCommented:
students who are seeking part time work.
IMHO, it is better to have a prof recommend a student...
Pay per photo or by hour,
Maybe just a straight out quote for the lot , not knowing how many photos you have and doing this type of work myself 50 dollars for a hundred or more depending on the currancy of your country sounds reasonable.
Whatever suites you but I'd pay a one off payment offer since they could be amateurs, and this doesnt require professional really.

Time limit a few days?
They would need to sample a few to determin if it meets your requirements.
Also do they have the tools?

adjusting color balances/hue/brightness cropping is pretty simple..  
Sometimes take out some scratches<< more difficult and time consuming.
What type of photos like in the contents.

You can use your own tools in windows 7 if you have time
Windows Live has Windows photo Gallery has a few quick adjustments if you dont have any photo editors
photo galleryPhotoPlus
If all you want it just to adjust contrast and brightness, whiten teeth, make your skin smooth, remove certain objects from pictures and apply certain effects to your photos,
Paint dot net my right hand tool
plugins for paint dot net
Adobe Photoshop Express is another free web based tool that lets edit your pictures online without the need to download any software.
PhotoFiltre is a complete image retouching program
>>> "Usually just crop and adjust color balances/hue/brightness.  Sometimes take out some scratches.  Each picture should only take about an average of 3 minutes.  Yes, I used to have an employee doing this for $15/hour.  I think that I can find better quality and less expensive, overseas." <<<

Do you mean resizing as opposed to cropping?

Resizing is something that can be done by a monkey with the right software if it is told what pixel dimensions and aspect to resize all the images to.  It is easily achieved by batch processing.  Cropping is very different.  The employee would presumably need to know what parts of each of the images to crop the original down to, and what dimensions the resultant image should be when complete.  Of course, this assumes that all the images have different subjects.  If the crop area is going to be in exactly the same place, and of the same pixel dimensions, in all the images, then there are a number of cheap or free programs that will batch process all the images to this spec.

Colour correction is an area that usually demands some form of instruction, or knowledge of previous requirements, or an empathy with a variety of subject matters.  Removing an unwanted colour cast (eg. a magenta hue) from a batch of images that have all come out badly is something that can often be done fairly well using built-in tools found in standard image editing software, but if the batch of photos includes ones taken in different lighting conditions, the correction is usually on a photo to photo basis using your eye as the judge.

If I had a batch of photos, some taken under tungsten lighting (low colour temp in degrees kelvin) and perrhaps a touch of fill-in flash, and others in the same batch taken outside on a bright sunlit day (high colour temp in degrees kelvin), the colour corrections would not usually something that could be done with an automated "fix photo" tool.  It usually requires a bit of trial and error and a some sympathy or affinity with the subject matter.  A photo may have been taken indoors with candles for ambient lighting to capture a particular mood, and if you increase the colour temperature towards the blue of sunshine lighting to make the whites look whiter, it would ruin the atmosphere.

Scratch removal is sometimes more involved than just running a scratch removal tool up to the point where it begins to degrade the image.

So, what I am saying is that this isn't something like Indian women repetitively sewing thousands of sequins on the same style of fashion garment hour after hour.  If the task needs any element of judgement based on your previous requirements for the photos, or if your employee has ever had to ask "what would you like done with this picture?", then I have a feeling that you may be disappointed farming out the job "overseas" for less than your current 75 cents (46 rupees) per image.

You haven't said whether this is your employee's sole function within your company.  If it is, AND IF the tasks do not require any real artistic interpretation (eg, for cropping and colour correction), then you are probably paying a bit too much at approximately twice the average US minimum wage.

If, however, the employee is performing these tasks in between other duties, AND IF there is some element of judgement involved, then you are probably getting reasonable value for your money.
hrolsonsAuthor Commented:
You all have put so much into your answers and I so appreciate it.  My main question though, is eLance the way to go or are there other sites like eLance that you guys are using with success?

These photos vary greatly and can't be processed in a batch.  Definitely skill and judgement will be needed when editing the photos.

We currently use Paint Shop Pro and have a couple of automatic scripts that get the photo pretty close to the way we need it.  Also, the clone tool is used often to remove major imperfections.  Also straighten/perpective correction from poor scan placement is always used.
Excellent that you have paintshop pro so do I  among my other tools..
I'm pretty sure not many students have it either unless they bought the newer Coral.
I personlly can't answers who to refer for you as I do this myself and donot require a professional.
Always use copies if you decide to try the students. It would be good practice for them but your details and requirements may be on inexperienced hands.
Besides I'm in Australia and my resources maybe futile for you in your country.
Not that we are really limited by distance these days.
Elance is an online staffing platform based in Mountain View, California, United States.
these people seem to developers of sorts.
their quote>Rather than staffing up with employees, we hire specialists for projects such as research, programming, web design & development, and more.<<
Have you looked around in your local phone directory?
My googling from Australia
Graphic Design Mountain View has a few directories
Thank you hrolsons
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