Promotion board photos are going to be completed much faster thanks to a comprehensive renovation recently finished at Base Combat Camera this past November. The huge facelift will not only improve photo processing times with addition of two extra photo stations, but visitors are going to notice dramatic changes to the overall look of the studio.
Completed November 22, 2016, the renovations transformed an existing large room into two separate studios with male and female changing rooms.
“It was a big open [space] that almost looked like a warehouse. It was very neglected,” said Chief Warrant Officer Michael Kropiewnicki, combat camera officer in charge. “It was disheartening to me because we have not just active duty [service members], we have military dependents coming in for no- fee passport photographs.”
At a total cost of $386,000 it took nearly two years for the entire facelift to be completed. The new studios are geared toward generating the most productivity while expediting day to day tasks within the unit.
“We have new computers that are directly connected to the cameras,” said Kropiewnicki. “When the Marine presses the shutter button to take that Marine’s photograph the image opens up in Photoshop on the computer. It is edited as required and they email it to the [Manpower Management Support Branch.]”
In addition to the extra changing rooms, contractors also added a soundproofed video studio, said Kropiewnicki, to be used for command messages, public service announcements and interviews.
““It’s a place for senior enlisted and senior officers to come and do public service announcements,” he said.
The cosmetic changes have affected the atmosphere of the studio positively to not only those coming in for photos but also the Marines who work there daily.
“When the customers walk in, they can’t believe they’re walking into a government building because of the aesthetics. The contractors did a great job. Wait times are significantly reduced,” said Kropiewnicki. “Now when they’re done, I see Marines hanging out and lingering in the office space a little bit longer… looking at the posters and different memorabilia we have from over the years…They love it.”
The studio is open to public affairs, combat camera and Marine Corps Community Services for any projects they may need the resources for. Please contact Marine Corps Installation-East Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune’s combat camera unit to schedule the use of the studio.