Q. When I take pictures of my children or pets, their eyes often turn out red, or just bright circles like Little Orphan Annie. What's going on?

A. This problem is generally caused by flash bulbs. Usually the bright bulb is aimed squarely at the person's eyes and ignites from a position very close to the lens of the camera. This combination causes "red eye" in your pictures.

Many manufacturers have solved this by moving the flash bulb position several inches higher than the lens. Most have solved it by going to electronic flash, which is not as bright and a lot faster. If you still shoot bulbs, remove the flash from the camera if possible and hold it up and away from the lens.

Even with electronic flash, move your hand a foot or so away from the lens and have your subject look at it. Not staring directly at the lens will help.


Q. When I shoot color pictures, I like to have them printed glossy. They seem clearer. Most of the time they come back with a rough surface. If I insist on glossy prints, it takes days longer. Should I settle for the rough prints?

A. Only if you want to. I like glossy prints better and I insist on them. But I sometimes have to wait extra days, too.

The reason? The papers are different, with the glossy paper being thinner and somewhat softer. It absorbs more and therefore is more difficult to dry. It has to be squeegeed carefully, and the machines that handle it need more care. That, of course, leads to the big advantage of textured prints: They can be handled, passed around and mailed without worry of fingerprints or scratches.

Remember, most places will return your pictures with a textured surface unless you specifically order glossy prints. Actually, I'm surprised they don't charge extra for them.