It’s VALENTINES DAY (& my birthday) Let’s Have a Giveaway!

It’s VALENTINES DAY…and my birthday! So in my effort to keep you all posted in my continuing education in the world of technology I thought I would share about a program from Windows I am LOVING, Windows Live Photo Gallery.

For Christmas I decided I needed a new camera. The 5 megapixel Fugi just wasn’t cutting it and my iPhone, although wonderful, couldn’t get the photos I wanted. I needed something with a bit more heft and A LOT more bells and whistles. Upon researching I realized this goal of mine was WAY beyond my price range. As if the Lord heard my prayer even before I uttered a word (this happens a lot 😉 ) my friend mentioned to me they were thinking about selling their older version Cannon Eos Rebel Xti. It was exactly within my price range and the perfect starter camera for a novice such as myself.

I’ve been having so much fun playing with all the settings and trying out new angles and lighting. But even with such an amazing camera there are still those shots that need a bit of retouching. Here’s where the fun began…

For starters Live Photo Gallery is so user friendly and allows me the flexibility to retouch big batches of photos automatically or refine individually the brightness, contrast, color, shadows, highlights, etc. Not to mention straightening, cropping and all sorts of different ways to get the perfect photo every time. I am totally addicted to this now and am retouching every shot I take.

Take this shot for instance. Here is the original shot I took. It was an overcast day and for some reason the coloring seemed so blue.

Original shot

Now here is the retouching I was able to do through Windows Live Photo Gallery. I bumped up the brightness and color while playing with the saturation, contrast and shadows. Turned out to be a great engagement shot for my soon to be cousin in law! I think she even used this as her Facebook profile picture (the ultimate compliment!)

After Retouching!

Speaking of Facebook I was further impressed with the way this program is synced up with social media making my photos of a recent 2nd birthday so easy to post to my Facebook profile it took only minutes!

Here’s a few more fun facts and tools:

  • Facial recognition: Facial recognition technology allows Photo Gallery to find pictures that have people in them and deduce who is in those pictures based on who you have tagged in past pictures.
  • Share photos and videos online: Save time by publishing photos and videos directly from Photo Gallery to your favorite social networking sites like SkyDrive, Flickr, Facebook, and YouTube.
  • Find tab: Photo Gallery’s new Find tab allows you to naturally filter your photos by faces, names, dates, geo-locations, descriptive tags, folder titles or any combination.
  • Photo Fuse: Photo Fuse allows you to take the best parts of multiple photos to combine them into one “perfect” photo with an easy-to-use editing tool.
  • Panorama: Now you can stitch several photos together to create a panorama. This is a great way to capture photos of landscapes and other subjects that are too large for a single photo.

Since my goal this birthday is to give instead of receive I wanted to give my loyal readers a present. My very generous friends at Microsoft have donated a Microsoft LifeCam HD-6000 for me to give away to one LUCKY reader!

Microsoft LifeCam HD6000

The LifeCam HD-6000 is the perfect webcam for notebooks, featuring TrueColor Technology and 720p HD widescreen video. Additionally, it features a 360-degree rotation view so users can point the webcam in any direction to share a broader picture with friends and family. With a compact design, short three-foot cord and carrying case, the LifeCam HD-6000 for Notebooks is the perfect webcam for sharing life on the go. Suggested retail $59.95.

There are three ways to enter:
• Comment below what new insight you learned about Windows Photo Gallery Live.
• Share this post on Facebook (copy and paste this link and comment below telling me you did so.
• Tweet this and comment below telling me you did. “Just entered RetroModernMom’s giveaway for a LifeCam webcam! @Wilkinsonjk #WindowsChampion”

Giveaway ends Friday February 24th at 7pm. I will announce the winner in the comments. GOOD LUCK!

This post was sponsored by the Windows Champion program and the LifeCam webcam was provided by Microsoft.


CONGRATS to Theresa! Thank you everyone for entering and spreading the word! I appreciate each and every one of you!


  1. I think even I could use the photo gallery. I’m not too tech savvy.

  2. What a great day for a birthday! It’s my brother-in-law’s birthday today too. Happy birthday/Valentine’s Day!

  3. I love the retouching you did! Happy birthday Katie, dear. Thinking of you today. You are so blessed.

  4. Happy Birthday!

    Photo-tech scares me, but this seems almost doable for a klutz like me. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Happy birthday! I tweeted about your giveaway but am not entering (I’m a Mac user).

  6. I love the idea of the face recognition. I NEED that with all of the photos I take.

  7. Ok..that is amazing – the transformation of your images! I would love this for all my gazillion kid pics

  8. shared on facebook!

  9. happy birthday and what a great giveaway. pretty blog too!

  10. Happy Happy Birthday! What a great day….Valentine’s Day and your Birthday I hope it was fabulous! XOXO

  11. This would be great for my vacation pics!

  12. I learned it features a 360-degree rotation view so users can point the webcam in any direction

    • CONGRATS to Theresa for winning the LifeCam webcam!!! We’ll be in touch with further details.

      And thanks everyone else who entered and helped spread the word. It was so appreciated!

  13. I like the fact that you can lighten your pictures, it is so annoying to have the perfect picture,to have the lighten to be so dark.

  14. Michelle Martin says:

    Hi Kate! I copied and posted the link on my facebook page! 😉

  15. I was wondering how it was going with the camera!

  16. I just RT’d your post!!!

  17. I think it is so cool that is has a panoramic feature! I could have used this during winter formal pics! The lightening feature is also cool…I have many pictures where the light exposure is lacking. Very, very cool!!! I didn’t even know something like this existed!!!

  18. Am sharing this on FB!!!!!

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