Skylark Images Sonoma County’s Best Giclée Printing Company

It never hurts to spotlight a great business, and Skylark Images, located in Northern California, is an great digital fine-art printing business. Serving artists, photographers, designers and everyone in-between, Skylark Images is a walk-in print shop which is just as easily accessed via the internet. Even better, Skylark has one-stop-shopping for people purchasing canvas prints-custom stretching on kiln-dried poplar frames at very competitive prices.
High quality large format printers,  indeed, they can reproduce up to 60” x any length. They only use the industry’s top of the line canvas and papers to print on, and now use green environmentally friendly coatings to protect your prints. As beta testers for their suppliers they know their materials and only use the best.

Skylark Images Home Page
Skylark Images Home Page

Unlike the competition, high-resolution scanning of your image with a depth of 16 bits and a custom color profile is standard at Skylark Images, and it is the only way to ensure a beautifully clear, detailed, color-accurate print.

Established over 15 years ago, Skylark Images enjoys word-of mouth success with thousands of satisfied customers from all over the globe.

How do I know all of this? I am on the inside-a happy employee of Skylark for almost 10 years.


Don’t Sign Away Your Intellectual Property Rights

I recently ran across a cool sounding and popular website for content distribution. It’s called Pixelpipe, maybe you’ve heard of it.  You upload “your stuff” to Pixelpipe;from there, on demand, you send whatever is required from “your stuff”  to your blog, your Facebook page, someone’s iPhone, Youtube, whatever. “Your stuff” is stored on their servers, no more “upload to here, email to there, submit to this site”, etc. Sounded good. All free, just a simple sign up.

What the hell, I thought, why don’t I read the Terms And Conditions? They will be handling my intellectual property…how long can it take?

Below is my post to the Forum in regards to this issue. The subject was originally about Facebook and Intellectual Property Rights, but I broadened the discussion to other sites. (If you missed the hubbub regarding Facebook, here is a link to the backstory. And where the heck have you been keeping yourself? On a cattle drive in the Australian Outback? ).

There are content distribution sites doing the same thing. And big software companies. Two prime examples are Pixelpipe and Adobe. *

Read ‘s Terms and Conditions here and remember: they aren’t working with vacation photos so compressed they are “garbage”. Pixelpipe is, in their own words “a content distribution gateway that allows users to publish text and upload photos, video and audio files once through Pixelpipe and have the content distributed across over 60 social networks, photo/video sites and blogs, and other online destinations.” **

The CEO of Pixelpipe told me their legal team says the wording in their TAC is necessary in order to redistribute content for people, and that ”  Believe me, we’re not interested in owning your content just publishing and redistributing on your behalf.” I have no doubt that they aren’t looking to steal my stuff, but why should I take a chance like that? And why should they be allowed to retain copies of my Content “indefinitely“?

Adobe recently (2008) changed their TAC for Photoshop Express to do the same thing. Plus they added a bit about deriving revenue from User Content without remuneration. Read it here .

As a matter of fact, I Googled the offensive terms “intellectual property” “terms and conditions” website derivative and many many sites came up. (780,000 hits, most of them sites with Terms such as Pixelpipe and Facebook). Pixelpipe worries me because they deal exclusively in peoples intellectual property. And because I almost registered with them without reading the TAC.

Not all website have these terms, however. WordPress doesn’t, for example. Neither does Shutterchance .

What’s the point of all this? Simple.

Read the Terms and Conditions of any website you want to upload your intellectual property to!

A lot of other folks are concerned about this. , and Magnifisycopathological are just a few.

I feel pretty bent out of shape by this, and hope the next time you see that checkbox next to the sentence I’ve read and agree with’s Terms and Conditions you take the time to actually read them.

*In order to not violate anyone’s Terms of Use, I am providing links to the two companies TAC pages so you can read the troublesome language for yourself.

**©Pixelpipe 2008

Digital Darkroom Works and Photography

Announcing New Website! Woo Hoo!! Yippee!!

November, 2009

I know, pretty crazy, right? I can hardly believe it. I have never had a domain or website. Lots of blogs, fledgling things for the most part, but no _my name dot com_ – until now. Who cares if I’m the last person to do it, I’m excited about it.

What You’ll Find There Photos? Well, yes, lots of visual content in the form of slideshows. It was designed from “scratch”, all backgrounds, icons, logos, favicons, etc are my creations. I didn’t really have a design I wanted to copy or emulate in mind when I started. This resulted in a site not exactly like any other site out there. Definitely not a cookie-cutter template website for photographers_. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that., it’s just not what I wanted.)

Short answer: I just made it up, and filled it with photos.

My goal was to keep it simple, easy to navigate, fun to visit, free of distracting ads… _and filled with photos.

Did I mention photos? Please check it out for yourself. Bring a crowd if you like. Stay as long as you want and come back often.


Call It Thumbgrid or Mosaic Image Wall

Just call it a place you want to visit-a wall of images at  One  fat page, one fat wall of photos.

People tell me they really like this element of my photography website; it’s my favorite page as well.  Clicking on a thumbnail reveals the photograph beneath the mosaic, on the same page. From there you can activate a slideshow or go back to the mosaic. You never leave the page.  Personally, I just love having it all right in front of me .

I hope you find  the small amount of time you will need to visit and enjoy the “Mosaic Image Wall” -or “Thumbgrid”- whatever.

A special thanks to Dominey Design, Inc. for making and maintaining the terrific “Slideshow Pro for Flash” as well as the “Thumbnail Grid” add-on.  Both are very reasonably priced products which figured heavily in the design and implementation of my (first) site.

I plan to utilize Slideshow Pro products in my future web work.

You can visit them online at

mosaic image wall

Calling All Sonoma County Residents!



Have you…

Ever heard of Shollenberger Park in Petaluma?…

Walked your dogs, took your kid on a bike ride around the main pond, traipsed back and forth with a camera and tripod hoisted on your shoulder…

If you have enjoyed the changing light at dusk, the nesting swans, jogging with your iPod twice around for good measure…


The threat comes from an Asphalt Company (Dutra Co) and it’s desire to build a facility at Haystack Landing .

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors will be voting on this controversial issue in May, so there is time to make your feelings known.

Please spend a  minute at the Save Schollenberger blog which has tons of information, groups, links, dates-everything you need to know.

Or  you can sign the petition here and visit their blog another day.

Aztec Dahlias Add Smiles and Color to Adobe Rd, Petaluma

Yesterday while driving home on Adobe Rd I saw a new and beautiful sight – rows and rows of blooming dahlias of all colors and sizes. Today Syd and I returned there, and I had a lovely time in the sun photographing these stunning flowers. I also had the opportunity to talk to Rosa O’Brien and Timory O’Brien about these special blooms. Rosa’s Husband Jamie (Timory’s brother) was busy shooting pictures for their website so I didn’t meet him, but everyone I did speak to was so friendly and accommodating I thought I’d mention it here. 

If you are lucky enough to be in Sonoma or Napa county and can get to their spot on Adobe Rd (map) do so soon. They sell the blooms singly but the real treat is visual. Thanks to the O’Brien’s for sprucing up this stretch of country road. Tubers are for sale through their website.

These are crazy-big, crazy-colorful, crazy-cool flowers and I would not miss out. A treat for your eyes!



Aztec Dahlias:   2115 Adobe Rd Petaluma CA

Click here for a map, or visit their website here. Tell them Sara the Photographer sent you!

Stem Cell Regenerative Therapy for Sydney

I know, never believe anything you learn on the internet, right?

Maybe. But when your dog is a healthy 16 year-old, and her only real trouble in life comes from aging hip joints & stiff knees, what sounds “too good be true” takes on the glow of “miracle cure”. 

Apparently there is some good work being done by an outfit called Vet-Stem which has had promising results on canines. I am a lousy typist, so please read about it here, then come back to me…

Sydney is going in on Monday for a consultation with a local vet. When I made the appointment, I probably should have lied about her age, as she doesn’t seem a day over 14.

BK said it best, “She’s a lady, ladies always lie about their age”.

I’ll let you know what they say.