Portrait Studio Closure Surprises Customers

Company that operated studios in Wal-Marts abruptly closed last week

By Kevin Cokely
|  Monday, Apr 8, 2013  |  Updated 11:53 PM CDT
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About one in every five Wal-Mart stores leased space to PictureMe. Photos can now be picked up at the store's customer service desk.

Kevin Cokely, NBC 5 News

About one in every five Wal-Mart stores leased space to PictureMe. Photos can now be picked up at the store's customer service desk.

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People worried about getting photos from a nationwide portrait studio company that suddenly shut down last week are starting to finally get them.

CPI Corp., which operated photography studios in Wal-Mart and Sears stores, closed all of its U.S. studios last week.

Royce City mother Ashley Elliott said she was angry and disappointed to find that the PictureMe Portrait Studio she took her daughters to for their Easter pictures had closed.

"I mean, I didn't know what else to do. ... There was nobody there to help, you know," she said.

She had used the portrait studio inside the Wal-Mart along Interstate 30 in Rockwall many times before and expected nothing but a picture perfect memory to last a lifetime.

"It was their Easter pictures so, I mean, they were pretty important to me," Elliott said.

But when she called to find out if her photos were ready, she discovered the studio was closed with no way to get her pictures.

About one in every five Wal-Mart stores leased space to PictureMe. Photos can now be picked up at the store's customer service desk.

Elliott picked up hers as soon as she heard.

"They're good -- that's why I wanted to get them because there's no going back and redoing that day, you know," Elliott said.

St. Louis-based CPI also operated Sears Portrait Studios and Kiddie Kandids.

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