So you’re a professional or highly-skilled amateur with advanced to mid-level retouching skills, who is willing to commit to restoring at least one photo for a deserving Sandy victim for FREE? Hooray! Click here to complete our AUTO-FILL RESTORATION VOLUNTEER REGISTRATION FORM.
*You'll be asked for basic contact info, prior restoration samples, a brief description of your qualifications and skill level, whether you have facial reconstruction skills, illustration skills and/or formal color correction training plus where you learned about CARE for Sandy. If you do not have applicable samples, send us an e-mail, and we'll reciprocate with a "test image" download link.
NOTE: We're doing our best to respond to inquiries as soon as possible, however our administrative staff is small. If you do not hear from us right away know that you will receive a response in no more than 7-10 days. Please make sure to read the guidelines listed on this page. Also make sure your provided samples are large enough to observe details. Tiny jpgs make it difficult to assess skill level.
CARE for Sandy would like to encourage only those with unquestionably solid retouching skills to apply.
We've added this clarification paragraph, as many of our registrants have checked "Expert" or "Advanced" when indicating skill level, however our own definition of advanced may differ. Advanced volunteers need to be high-end professional retouchers/restorers (e.g. with advertising, film or beauty clients) -OR- have provided truly advanced samples which demonstrate that a given volunteer has the ability to realistically reconstruct faces, hands, skin and missing areas in general without significant coaching from our staff. Valued volunteers with intermediate/beginner skills will be invited to "adopt" photos from our alternate albums, which are just as essential to repair. Here are a few advanced before/afters to inspire:
While enthusiasm is valued please do NOT attempt to restore an image of any dpi/size if you have not received explicit permission to do so! We will be wanting to assess your skill level before formally granting high-res access and need to make sure that no one's time is wasted. We're a happy small crew over here at CARE for Sandy, thus may not always have an immediate opportunity to transfer an ADOPT ME! image to our ADOPTED! album after it has been formally assigned. An alternate volunteer may have already requested the same photo. Double booking is a can o' worms we're looking to avoid.
You MUST be a registered/approved volunteer to request to adopt an image.
To keep our hundreds of volunteers and what will soon be thousands of photographs carefully organized, we also ask that you follow our VERY specific instructions on how to request high-res images.
CARE for Sandy's founder is a busy creative professional, so you're preachin' to the choir — but think about it. How much time do you waste watching ridiculous animal videos each week? Did you really need to linger on Uppercase or The Onion for an extra 37 minutes? Will your friends perish if you don't visit Facebook at least 50 times per day!!? Is a foosball game worth more to you than thankful crocodiles from someone who has lost everything in the Rockaways? Would shaving 10 minutes off your quotidian routine for one month (that's over 4.5 accumulative hours) corrupt your monetized goals? Whether you have 2 or 20 hours to gift — every compassionate hour truly matters.
One. Once you've been assigned a photo, i.e. have received a high-resolution scan, you'll be asked to complete its restoration within no more than 3 months. You'll be able to request additional photos to restore thereafter. Some volunteers have already begun to abandon images. Please do not commit to our cause if you cannot finish 'yours' within 3 months!
Naturally. Which is why our Photo Submisions FAQ page for assistance seekers gently indicates thus.
Our restoration volunteer coordinator, Jonathan, will send a personal memo to confirm whether or not you've been accepted. In the past we've turned few away, as our albums contain photos which suit a variety of skill levels, however we have decided to be more discriminating moving forward as our images are dirtier than most have expected, thus pose special challenges. What 'you' might consider Advanced, we might consider Intermediate or Beginner. Our standards are very, very high. Thanks for your patience!
Google-Drive. Though you needn't operate a gmail account to access our download links. (Once welcomed as a volunteer you'll be sent further instructions.)
Yes. If requested each of your restored photo(s) will receive by-line(s). Each byline may be hyperlinked to *one universal self-promotional url of your choosing. We also plan to occasionally profile select restoration volunteers on our NEWS blog. If you have a personal Sandy story to share, how-to tips for other retouchers or something about yourself you think the world needs to know — ping away.
*i.e. Whether you help to restore 1 or 10 photos, your chosen hyperlink will remain the same for each.
By default CARE for Sandy Submission Rules dictate that NO personal information (save for the city and state in which a given photo has been found) provided by photo assistance seekers will be shared with the public (including first and last names) unless an individual has specifically requested that we do so. Privacy is important to CARE for Sandy. However if an individual or family requests to connect with a volunteer to say "Thank you!", and if a restoration volunteer wishes to share his/her personal contact info, CARE for Sandy will make this possible.
No. Believe it or not, hourly write-offs are never IRS-permissible. ("You cannot deduct the value of your time or services, including...the value of income lost while you work as an unpaid volunteer for a qualified organization.") Read page 166 of this pub by way of proof. If Uncle Sam discounts currently matter more than heart strings, this may not be the right opportunity for you, anyhow.
Response has been spectacular. Since CARE for Sandy's inception (11/10/12) more than 450 have signed up to help restore photos from countries all over the world including Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, England, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Spain, Sweden and Ukraine. Entire high-school & university classrooms (180+ students strong!) as well as retouching firms have offered up TLC too.
This is best explained on this family info page.
Whether or not you've received confirmation that your image has been approved, it may likely have already been sent to its family, as we tend to not post images online until respective family members have been notified and have sent confirmation that a given restored photo has been received. We also frequently choose to set some restorations aside for minor spit n' polish detailing by staff "fixer uppers," so as to get volunteers started on new adoptions, as going through several additional rounds of "coaching" emails with less experienced volunteers often takes longer than performing minor amendments ourselves. We may also simply be extraordinarily busy.
We do not remove photos from our Adopted! album until we've had the opportunity to post them in in our Before/After album. We do this so as to not forget to remove or post any of your woooonderful restorations. This also keeps scanned photo numbers accurate and prevents duplicate postings.
- Check your spam bin frequently and alter your settings so that your spam folder does not automatically delete. Our g-mails often get pegged as spam.
- We're crazy busy. We receive between 200-700 e-mails EACH week. We promise we appreciate you! Loads! We'll answer as soon as we possibly can!
- We're inhumanly busy, due to scanning event coordination. Monitor our calendar. If you see events on our agenda, be prepared to remain extra patient.
- Family inquiries, event inquiries, time-sensitive press inquiries, new registrations and adoption inquiries are answered much more swiftly than RIPs (Restorations In Progress), and in that order. RIPs fall last in our queue. Why? 85% of all restorations are returned for at least minor amendments. 50% are returned for moderate to major amendments. It takes a lot longer to craft a custom tutorial, than it does a generic reply.
- Your fellow volunteers have not been heeding instructions. Ignoring this page and this page are hands down THE most common reason our to-answer-queue becomes backed up. Help yourself and help others by self-monitoring/troubleshooting your own restorations for potential issues. So that we won't need to spend 10-30 minutes pointing out what has already been explained on our website in great detail.