Saturday, July 24, 2010

Recapturing memories from the past!

When my husband and I were kids our family's didn't take many pictures.  The thing to do in the 50's and 60's was to take slides.  Of course now digital photography is the mainstay of my picture taking, but what about all those slides sitting carefully packed away in my basement.  A friend of mine bought a slide scanner, because like me, most of her memories from the past are on slides.  She loaned it to me, and told me to figure out how it worked so I could teach her.  That sounded great to me and I could satisfy my desire to scrap some of those precious old memories.  The scanner she loaned me is a "Smart Digital Image Copier" by Stratford Labs.

It came with software which I found very easy to install on my computer.  The slides fit in a long slim back tray which slides through the scanner.  It holds 3 slides, so the process of scanning very many old slides will be a time commitment.  However, the quality of the end picture (.jpg file) is pretty good, actually better than I expected.

Some of the slides I scanned were even damaged.  For example, I was looking for a picture of my husband as a child that I had seen years ago where he was wearing a firefighter helmet. After much searching I found it, but to my dismay the slide had mold one it.  After some research as to what I could do, I found that rubbing alcohol could be used to clean off the mold.  With this task done I could see that the emulsion of the slide did have some impressions in it from the mold, but I still wanted to give scanning a try.  Here is a layout I did with that precious picture.

My husband was between 3 and 4 years old in the top left picture.  While I lost some of the color from the slide, the clarity in the picture was still quite good.  The two other pictures are recent photos.  While my husband is no longer a firefighter, he really enjoyed this job.  He kept his uniform and with a little encouragement I convinced him to put it back on so I could have a "then and now" layout. 

I had some doubts about slide scanning prior to this project, but now I can see that the end product will certainly produce photos that can be used for many things, including scrapbooking. 


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