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Photographer puts wedding proofs on Web

January 25, 1998|By KERRY LYNN FRALEY

Richard T. Meagher / staff photographer

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Living away from her native Smithsburg, Charlene Lewis said she expected it would be difficult to show the proofs from her wedding photos to family and friends interested in buying their own prints.

She figured they would be in the same predicament with husband Ed Lewis's folks, who live in Johnstown, Pa., she said.

That's one reason why the Woodbridge, Va., couple was excited when photographer Jerry Bowers told them he wanted to post their wedding photo proofs on the Internet to test a new service.

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"We're both into the Internet in our jobs," said Lewis, 27, whose responsibilities as a corporate support analyst for Perot Systems Corporation in Reston, Va., include creating Web pages.

Her husband, a senior engineer for Lockheed-Martin in Arlington, Va., had a technical interest in the endeavor as well, she said.

The couple - who got married Nov. 29, 1997, at Otterbein Methodist Church in Hagerstown - went on the Web last week.

Timing was part of the reason the Lewises were chosen to test the new E-PRINTS service.

Bowers, 44, owner of Jerry Bowers Photography in Smithsburg, said he read a story about E-PRINTS in a trade journal in November and wanted to try it out as soon as possible.

Professional photographers pay a fee to use the Internet service, which posts their proofs of wedding and other photographs on a Web page where prospective buyers can look at and order them electronically, Bowers said.

The service replaces the standard practice of sending paper proofs of pictures from weddings and other events to people who would be interested in ordering prints, he said.

Because you need a password to access a page, the couple controls who can look at their pictures, Bowers said.

He said he sees a lot of potential for couples like the Lewises, who have friends and relatives spread out in other states and countries.

Brides- and grooms-to-be have liked the idea, said Bowers, who said he doesn't plan to charge for the option if a couple has enough relatives and friends likely to use the service.

It turned out the Lewises got their paper proofs back before Christmas, in time to show them to all of their relatives during holiday visits, Charlene Lewis said.

But she hadn't been able to get together with her maid of honor, Sandy Buhrman of Martinsburg, W.Va., who was waiting to view the pictures on the Internet, Lewis said.

Buhrman wasn't the only one anxious to see the wedding pictures on the Web, however, she said.

"We have a lot of people curious," said Lewis, who said her in-laws recently got on the Internet and were asking when the pictures would be posted.

The E-PRINTS site can be found at http://www.e-prints.com.

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