Registering

How do I register?

How do I register?

Click on “Become a Member” on the top right above the menus. Fill in the form with the information required – email address, username desired, password, country and city are mandatory - and check the free or premium account type box. The next step is to read the Terms of Service (TOS) and check the appropriate field. Press [Send] and you will be forwarded to “My Photofolia Account”, from which you will have access to innumerous areas of the Site. From then on, use the "Sign in" option.

Only one account per member is allowed. We expect our members to be honest and open about this.

What if I forget my password?

If you forget your password you just have to go to the very right top corner and click on "forgot your password" and follow the instructions.

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Navigating

You can navigate to various pages from the top menu. Also the pages which are related to your own activities are to be found in the My Menu >> My Account page

I want to change my intro page. How do I do it?

Go to My Profile >> My Intro and edit your information. [Send] saves the changes.

How do I change my profile photo?

Go to My Profile >> My Pic, choose the image in your files and click [Send]. Make sure the file is not bigger than 150 x 150 pixels.

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Uploading an Image

What kind of images can I post?

Photofolia is quite eclectic with regards to content. Nude photos and photos with offensive content (prejudice, criticism of others´ culture, religion, moral values, and pedophilia) are not acceptable and will be removed.

How many images can I upload?

Any PF member is allowed to upload one image per day.

Which size should I upload?

The image's width is to be set equal or less than the following values:
Horizontal image: 800 pixels
Perfectly square image: 800 pixels
Vertical image: 600 pixels
If the width does not exceed these values, the image will be uploaded without any changes. On the other hand, if the width values are exceeded, the image will be resized automatically, and the image might lose sharpness as well as its embedded EXIF data.
The file size must not exceed 2MB.

How do I upload a photo?

From the menu at the top of any page, click on Add New >> Photo. Choose the image in your files and click [Upload Photo]. Please provide as much technical information as possible. Select one or more categories which fit to your photo. Select the country, state and the location from the drop-down menus. If you do not see an appropriate location to be selected, click on the button [New city or location] and enter a new location.
Members are requested to provide a note about the image. This can be factual or background information, an explanation of why you took this shot, or a question regarding technical issues related to this image.
If your photo file contains exposure data embedded into it as EXIF information, the exposure data as well other camera information is automatically shown in the corresponding fields if you upload in the recommended format. If one or more values in the EXIF data section are missing, you are encouraged to enter them manually.
At the bottom of the page there are some additional optional choices.
If your photo is intended for the current “Theme of the Month”, you need to select “Yes” for the question. See detailed instructions in “About/Theme of the Month”.
You also have the choice whether or not to allow workshops on your image.
For premium members only, there are further options at the bottom of the page to upload Complementary and Panorama images. See the FAQ sections for them.

Which characters are allowed in a title

Because of optimisation for search engines, (SEO) certain less common characters and emoticons are not accepted in titles. The common French and German accents are accepted but if you are thinking of using less common characters, it is better to avoid them, as it may not allow your image to be opened. Please also do NOT include emoticons in titles for the same reason.

How do I delete a photo?

Go to My Menu >> My Gallery. You can either edit the information you provided or delete the image. Please bear in mind that, by deleting an image, the whole content (EXIF, your text, critiques and replies) will be deleted too.

I uploaded a photo but changed my mind and I want to post another photo. Can I upload the desired photo immediately after having deleted the first one?

No. Once you have uploaded one file, you will not be able to upload your next image until 24 hours later, UTC (effictively GMT). However, if a premium members finds an error in an upload, they will be able to re-upload an improved version using the Joker feature. (See Joker in FAQs) In the case of workshops, basic members can upload one image per day; there is no limit for premium members.

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Replacing an image with a Joker image

The feature JOKER is available for Premium members only. It was conceived for those occasions when the user notices a mistake after uploading, but does not want to wait 24 hours to post again. It is available for main images in ordinary posts, series and inspiration posts.

How do I upload a Joker image?

Click on [Edit] under the relevant image. (if it is an earlier image, go to My Menu >> My Gallery to find the image.) Upload the new image on the edit page.
The page "Editing Photograph's Data" will appear with the original photo and the new one. Please use the note area to explain the changes you have made and keep the original note.
Uploading a JOKER does not prevent you from uploading your daily post.

How can people see that I uploaded a Joker?

  • When you see the JOKER icon active in orange below the image, it means that THAT image has a re-upload.
  • The images will not appear in the main gallery: they are placed in a dedicated gallery available in the main horizontal bar Galleries >> Joker

Are there any Restrictions?

Yes: Please bear in mind the following points:

  • The new image has to be the same as your previous upload, but with a new post processing;
  • You can re-upload only once.

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Entering location coordinates to the photo in the upload process

Why should I provide a map view?

The map view function available in Photofolia offers additional information, which often helps the viewer to better understand a photo, a point of view or a situation. To provide this information to the viewers of your photo, you need to add the location coordinates during the upload process. The coordinates can also be added and edited after uploading by clicking [Edit] under a photo or under a thumbnail in “My Gallery”.

What if my camera has a GPS feature?

Some cameras nowadays have a GPS feature and the coordinates are saved together with other exposure data into the EXIF information in the photo file. The automatic EXIF data retrieval process of PF also retrieves these coordinates and you do not need to enter them yourself unless you want to point another location than the camera location itself. In such a case the location can be specified using the provided map ([Get from map] button) or by entering them manually directly to the “Coordinates” field.

Ho do I use the map to find the coordinates?

The upload/edit page has a button [Get from map]. Clicking it opens a map with the help of which you can pick up the coordinates quite easily. The map opens centred at the country which is selected for the photo or if not selected yet, at the uploader's own country.
The idea is to move the map "under the red marker" from the start location by dragging it until the red cross is at the place you want to show (the POV or a building for example). The marker coordinates are shown while moving the map. Use the zoom controls and change the map mode to Satellite or Terrain if needed to help you to position the red cross.
Once the right position is found, click [Save location]. The coordinates are copied to the "Coordinates" field of the form and the map closes. Clicking [Cancel] just closes the map without copying anything.

How do I use the place name search?

Enter a country name, city name, street name or any name, which should exist in Google Maps, into the field "Name" and click [Find]. Note that same names may exist in many places on the globe, and Google makes a guess, which might not be the right one. In such a case add more information into the search field (country, state, province, city)

Examples:

  • Maggio -> a street near Buenos Aires
  • Maggio Italy -> a highway in Liguria
  • Maggio Lecco -> a village near city Lecco

No separators are needed between search words. The search is case insensitive. Note that the results are somewhat randomly prioritised and the starting point and map scale has an effect too. Google also knows countries and many bigger cities in several languages, although the map name is in the local language. For example: "Cologne" finds Köln. This simple search is not perfect, but is of good help in many cases.

What if I already know the coordinates?

If you know the approximate coordinates (for example those of an another photo) you can utilise them to specify the location. You can enter valid coordinates to the "Coordinates" field prior to clicking [Get from map], and the map opens centred at that location. Alternatively you can enter the coordinates into the field "Coordinates" on the bottom of the map and then click the rightmost button [Find]. Then proceed as described in "Working with the map".

What is the coordinates format?

The coordinates format to be used in the alternative method is decimal degrees separated with a comma (,) (Latitude first, longitude second). Latitudes south from Equator and longitudes west from Prime Meridian (longitude 0°) are preceded by "-".

Examples:

  • Paris, France: 48.856614,2.352222
  • Melbourne, Australia: -37.814107,144.963280
  • Sao Paulo, Brasil: -23.548943,-46.638818

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Uploading a Complementary Image

A premium member only feature.

How do I add a complementary image to my main post?

The upload process is very easy and intuitive. Once you have downloaded your main image and filled out the note, EXIF, location and so on, at bottom of the page you will encounter the option "Complementary Image". Click “Yes” and the space to browse and upload will open. The size regulation is exactly the same as the main image.

The complementary image will show up as a small thumbnail below the main image and to see it just click on it.

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Uploading a Panorama Image

A premium member only feature.

How do I upload a panorama image?

Go to Add New >> Photo and upload the smaller version with a maximum width of 800 pixels.

Further down, on the same page, check the button "yes" for panorama and a box will appear for you to search for your panorama file, with a maximum of 2500 X 800 pixels.

The panorama image will show up as a small thumbnail below the main image and to see it just click on it.

What if I uploaded the wrong panorama file?

Go to My Menu >> My Gallery. Find the photo you uploaded, click on [Edit] and on the bottom of the page right of "Panorama image" click on "Search File". Search the right version of your panorama file and the click [Send]. The new file will overwrite the previous file.

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Uploading an Inspiration Lesson or Image

Inspiration is a premium feature.

There are two different types of images that can be uploaded:

  • An Inspiration Lesson, or an image which fits to an already existing Inspiration Lesson.
  • A new Inspiration Lesson needs a prior approval by the Inspiration moderators.
  • To obtain an approval you need to send all your images and a detailed explanation of the concept being presented and describe step by step how you reached the results. Any member who reads through your explanation once your lesson is published needs to have a very clear understanding how he/she can achieve the same results of what you did. The purpose of this feature is sharing, teaching and learning.

There is no prescribed format for an inspiration lesson, but the following are a few major items that should be discussed:

  • Shooting parameters and setup. Go into some detail how you setup the camera in the field or studio for the expected results. A few things to consider: equipment used and/or alternative equipment that can be used to achieve the results.
  • Post Processing. What did you do to achieve the visual results? Discuss your software used, use of plugins, or other special techniques. Your goal is to teach and help everyone. If a skill level is required make sure you state it right up front.
  • References. Cite books or website’s that helped you learn the technique described. On line references are by far the best and should be made as a hot link in your discussion. Don’t forget some form of encouragement to get members to try the technique.
  • Once inspiration is posted, respond to any notes, critics, and questions posted on the technique. Remember that learning is a two way street of knowledge sharing.
  • If your intention is just to share an image, but not to teach particularly in how you reached a certain result you might prefer to post this image as a regular post for which you do not need any approval.
  • For prior approval you should submit your application to the moderators via Inspiration Contact

How do I access the Inspiration gallery?

The main menu offers two ways to see Inspiration images:

  • Gallery >> All Inspirations - which will show you all Inspiration images (the lesson image as well as all images fitting to an existing lesson)
  • Learning >> Inspiration - which will show you all existing lessons. (This is the easiest access to a lesson)
  • Clicking on the thumbnail of an Inspiration lesson will take you a page showing the main image of this lesson as well as all thumbnails of images which were inspired by this lesson. From there you will be able to open the lesson itself and navigate to the original post. Clicking on the orange inspiration icon will reveal the other images which accompany the lesson.
  • Furthermore, by clicking on the main image you will be take to the lesson.
  • Thumbnails marked with the orange camera icon are Inspiration Lessons.

How do I add a lesson?

Once you have the moderators approval you will find the upload page at Add New >> Inspiration
Upload the main image for your lesson.
In sequence you will find two questions:

  • "Is this a NEW Inspiration lesson?" Answer it with YES.
  • "Was this NEW Inspiration lesson approved by the moderator?" Answer it with YES.
  • Fill out all the remaining fields along the instructions provided at the upload page.
  • You can add up to 10 additional images to your main image which will allow you to present your lesson in a more comprehensive manner.

How do I add an image which fits an already existing Inspiration lesson?

Go to Add New >> Inspiration.
Upload your first image.
In sequence you will have to answer two questions:

  • "Is this a NEW Inspiration lesson?" Answer it with NO.
  • At the drop-down menu "Inspiration title": Choose the title of the Inspiration lesson which is leading you to do this particular upload.
  • Fill out all the remaining fields along the instructions provided at the upload page.
  • You can add up to 10 additional images to your main image.

Why cannot I read the entire text on the Inspiration lessons?

Basic members have a limited view (the first 120 characters) of all Inspiration lessons. Once a you upgrade from Basic to Premium you will see the entire text.

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How to keep EXIF data in uploads?

What is EXIF data and why is it important?

EXIF data is very useful for other photographers to understand how a photo was captured and learn from it. In keeping with PF's learning policy it is recommended that your posts show this information. Among other things, the EXIF data includes the camera settings used to take the photo. The EXIF data is embedded in your image file and accompanies the image to your computer or to your editing software. When you upload an image to PF, the EXIF data is automatically retrieved to be shown with your post and only the lens used data cannot be retrieved and must be entered manually on the upload page.

This automated retrieval is only possible if the EXIF data is still present in the photo file after post processing and saving.

How do I save my images to retain the EXIF Data?

In photo editing software it is possible to lose EXIF data if the finished image is not saved appropriately. For example, the widely used program Photoshop does not save the EXIF data if you use "Save for web" or "Save for web and devices" as your saving method. You have to use "Save as" as the saving method to keep the EXIF data still embedded in the photo file.. Additionally, check in the preferences that "Ignore Camera Date (EXIF)" is not selected. In Adobe Photoshop it is located in the preferences pull down: File >> Preferences >> File Handling. Similarly with other photo editing programs be aware which settings allow EXIF data to be included and that the saving method is correct.

You can verify that the file to be uploaded still contains EXIF data with many picture viewing programs for either Windows or Mac. You can also use tools available in the Operation System; In Windows Explorer right click on the filename and select "Properties" and then the "Details" tab and on the Mac Finder right click on the thumbnail and then click on "Get Info".

How do image dimensions affect the EXIF Data?

Always upload photos which comply with the width restrictions given elsewhere in this FAQ and also in the upload page itself. If you upload a photo, which exceeds the width restriction even with one pixel PF automatically resizes the image and that results in losing the EXIF data.

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Creating a Theme

How do I create a Theme?

  • Go to Add New >> Theme;
  • Choose "Personal" or "Group";
  • A personal theme, as the name suggests, is for you only. Anyone can add images to a group theme;
  • Give the theme a title of your choice;
  • Describe your theme;
  • Finish it by clicking on [Send].

Important detail: Your new theme will only become visible to other members once you have added an image to it.

How do I add a posted image to the theme?

  • Open the image you want to add to your Personal Theme or to a Group Theme;
  • Below the image and just under the File Information section, you will find the Add this image to: section. Select either "MyThemes" or "Group Themes". In the case of the first image for the theme, select "My Themes", for both a personal or a group theme you set up yourself. No-one else can add to your group theme until you add the first image.
  • In the case of a personal theme click on “My Themes”. You will be forwarded to your personal theme gallery. The words “[Add to this theme]” precedes each theme description. Scroll down to find the appropriate theme and click.“[Add to this theme]” A message appears that states, “Your request was performed successfully,” press the [OK] button.
  • In the case of a group theme set up by another member, click on “Group Themes.” under the relevant image. You will be forwarded to the ALL THEMES gallery. You can either type the title of the theme in the search bar, or scroll down until you find the theme to which you want to add the photograph. Once you have found the desired theme, click on [Add to this theme] A message appears that states, “Your request was performed successfully,” press the OK button.

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Creating a Series

How do I upload a Series?

  • Go to Add New >> Series
  • Upload the first image and fill the blanks as you would when uploading a single image;
  • After you click [Send], you will arrive at your Series gallery;
  • Click on "Series" under the thumbnail and you will be redirected to the upload series page;
  • Fill in the title box, this populates the image name for the “i” icon above your series image;
  • Search for your file by pressing the “Search File” button;
  • Don’t forget the description box, as this further populates the “i” icon above your series image;
  • Choose the sequence of your uploaded photos;
  • Do these last four steps for each image you want to add to the series. You have a maximum of 10 images.;
  • Click [SEND] and you will be forwarded to the main gallery.

How do I review my Series?

You can review your series at any time and as often as you want. You can delete and also add images (up to 10) for each series.

You can also change the title and note for each image in a series.

  • Go to My Menu >> My Series
  • Click on [Edit] to review the data and note of your first image;
  • Click on [Delete] to erase the whole series;
  • Click on [Series] to edit the images and to write a note for each image in the series.
  • Click on [Edit] by each image for which you want to edit the title and the text. Below the image you will see the space for the title and note. Keep the description as short as possible. Click on [Send] when finished. You can only edit one photo at a time.
  • To change the order of the images in a series, simply drag and drop the image to the desired position click [Send] and you will be directed to the main gallery;
  • You cannot move the main image within the Series.

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Creating a Travelogue

How do I create a new travelogue?

  • Go to Add New >> Travelogue
  • Enter a title
  • Set the dates of your travelogue using the date convention shown. Make sure the dates are accurate, as only images made in the time frame will be eligible
  • In the "About" box complete the text which describes your trip
  • Fill all blanks
  • Press [Send] and you will be forwarded to the Gallery page

How do I add a new image to my travelogue?

  • If uploading a new photo go to Add New >> Photo as usual
  • The upload process is exactly the same, but you should complete the additional step of choosing one of your created travelogues from the drop down menu "Your Travelogues"

Can I add an already posted image to a Travelogue?

  • Yes! From Your Gallery open the relevant image which you wish to add to your travelogue;
  • In the section "Add this image:" which you will find under the EXIF data of your image, click on "My Travelogue";
  • Click on Add (title of the image) to "My Travelogue";
  • You will be forwarded to your travelogue gallery;
  • Find the relevant travelogue and click on "Add to this travelogue".

Additional information:

With a travelogue you will share with everyone else your very own experiences during a special trip. Thus, you can only add your own photos to your travelogue.

An image can only be attributed to one travelogue.

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How do I add a workshop to an image?

You are only able to do a workshop (WS) after you have written a comment/ critique for the particular image.

After the critique is written and you press the [Send] button, you will see on the right top corner of your critique: Edit | Reply | Workshop | Translate.

Click on the "Workshop" and you will be redirected to a page which will allow you to download the image.

WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND YOU TO READ THE MESSAGE THAT COMES WITH THE IMAGE VERY CAREFULLY BEFORE YOU DOWNLOAD IT.

This page will allow you to Download the Original File by clicking the hot link below the notice. Use the same page to describe your workshop and re-post the edited image.

Important notice: If the photographer chose not to allow a workshop on her/his image you will not be able to download the image and edit it.

Members with a basic account will only be allowed to do one WS per day. Premium account members do not have a limit.

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What do the icons below the image in the gallery mean?

There are several icons below each image in the gallery.

The first thing you should bear in mind is: gray= off (no such option); orange= YES! (there is an extra something for you to enjoy). It´s just a matter of clicking on the icons:

complementary       - means there is an extra image explaining/complementing the main one;

panorama   - means there is a HUGE file showing a panorama image, which may or may not be the same image as the main one;

series        - means there is a sequence of up to 10 images in total that tell a story beginning with the main image, or up to 9 alternative images of the same subject or occasion;

themes         - means this image belongs to a Theme and this Theme can be accessed by clicking on the icon;

inspiration        - means this image belongs to the Inspiration feature and there are multiple images illustrating the presented photographic technique;

travelogue          - means there is also a slideshow of an unlimited number of images that tell a story about the member´s trip and/or adventure.

joker          - means there is a re-edited version of the posted image.

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How do I add a photo/photographer to my favorites?

Both basic members and premium members can compile lists of favorite pictures and photographers.

  • Click on the thumbnail of the image you would like to add to your Favorite Pictures or Favorite Photographers.
  • Below the main image you encounter the section "Add this image to:".
  • Click on "My Favorite Pictures" and/or "My Favorite Photographer".
  • You will find now the image at My Favorites >> Pictures or the selected photographer at My Favorites >> Photographers.

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Text Format

How do I add a hyperlink to my intro, notes, critiques and replies?

  • Insert the following HTML code into your note: ‹a href="http://www.the-site-that-you-want-to-connect-to.com"›your-text‹/a›
  • If you want the hyperlink to open a new page, use: ‹a target="_blank" href="http://www.the-site-that-you-want-to-connect-to.com"›your-text‹/a›
  • If you want to change the font of the hyperlink to make clear to everyone that this is a link you might place ‹em› at the front and ‹/em› at the end of the above cited HTML codes.

How do I add colored text to my intro, notes, critiques and replies?

  • Insert the following HTML code into your note: ‹span style="color:#color-code"›your-colored-text‹/span›
  • Some color codes: Red= FF0000; Green= 00FF00; Blue= 0000FF.
  • You can use any color as long as you use the RGB system which always entails 6 digits.

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Images on the Index Page

How does a photograph get selected to be part of the index page?

  • You have to be a PREMIUM member.
  • Your image has to be marked as a favorite image by at least three members.
  • The photograph has a 3:2 or 4:3 proportion. Panoramic images are excluded.

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Internal Message System (IMS)

What is the IMS?

As the name already suggests, it is an internal message system that works like an email to a specific PF member who you want to contact privately. You need to log in to PF to send and receive messages.

How do I activate the IMS feature?

  • Proceed to your profile page My Profile >> My Intro;
  • Check the "YES" button in "Allow Contact?" (otherwise you will not be able to send nor receive any messages).

How do I send a message?

Let us assume that the potential receiver has her/his IMS activated:

  • Go to the receivers profile page and click on "Contact Me";
  • Write your message and click [Send].

How do I RECEIVE/ REPLY a message?

  • 1 - As soon as you are logged into PF, a darker layer with a list of new messages will appear on your screen;
  • 2 - To reply to a message, just click on "more details" and you will be forwarded to the message page.
  • 3 - Click "Reply", write your reply and click [Send].

If you check a message "Mark as read", the reply does not appear in the alert overlay the next time you log into the site.

If you want to reply to your messages later, just navigate to My Menu >> My Messages (Sent/Received).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The IMS is intended to offer a fast and reliable means of communication between members. It`s NOT an on-line chat. Thus, you will not receive a new messages alert while you are already logged in (browsing or writing comments/texts in the forum), but you can check your messages at any time by navigating to My Menu >> My Messages (Sent/Received). The new messages alert appears only when you newly log into the site. We recommend that you check your received messages as soon as you log in.

What if there is no "Contact me" link on the member's page who I would like to contact?

If you do not find the "Contact me" link on the potential receiver`s profile page it simply means that this member does not want to allow contact or she/ he forgot to activate it. You might write a critique of one of her/ his image and add a short line asking for other means of contact.

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Types of Accounts

What are the differences between free and premium accounts?

With a Free Account: you will be able to upload one image per day and have an unlimited total amount of images in your gallery. You may write 20 critiques and perform one workshop per day. You are able to mark your favorite pictures and favorite photographers. You are also able to create personal themes for your photos. You can add your photos to the monthly themes, use the internal message system and participate in the forum. This account is completely free.

With a Premium Account you have the following addition features: If you wish to make changes to your image after posting, premium members may use the Joker feature. You can upload one complementary image per day and one panorama image per day with your main post. You will have the possibility of writing an unlimited amount of critiques and performing an unlimited amount of workshops per day. You will have a statistics page to view activity on your gallery. Travelogues and Series are popular features available to Premium members only. You have the possibility to upload a photo, which fits an existing Inspiration lesson and you have the possibility to compose a new Inspiration lesson after acceptance by the Inspiration moderator.

The differences of these two accounts can be seen here.

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Rating System

Is there a point system?

No, there is not. Photofolia´s goal is to allow its members to engage in a learning process about the world and photography and not to support any kind of competitions. However, premium members have some statistical features to allow him or her to reach some conclusions regarding the popularity of his or her individual photographs.

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