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Subject: Question about archiving photographs rss

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Amy Wiles
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For some reason, I've gotten into the mood of wanting to get my stuff organized. So we got some photo storage boxes (for one of my organizational projects), and I'm going through my photos, none of which are labeled. So I'm about to start writing on the backs. And I found all of our wedding pictures. Yes, they were in the envelops from the photo shop.

Is there anything I should consider about storing them? I know the best thing would be to put them into an album, but I don't have a lot of time or space to devote to this. Right now, the important thing is to get everything organized and labeled. Is it okay to label the backs with a ball point pen?

I'd also love to get these in digital format. I've got a good quality digital camera, and I took take a picture of everything, but that'd take forever, and might not be worth it. Should I invest in a scanner? Any recommendations on making prints digital?

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Jonathan "Spartan Spawn, Sworn, Raised for Warring!"
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Scanner definitely would be a benefit to you.

Having collecting miltaria you definitely want archival type storage for your photos. Non acidic special plastic would be your best bet, although I realize you say you dont have much space.

All in all, Id say since your just looking to preserve, box up the old photos after you have scanned and saved them all. I would even go as far to back them up twice, once on a hard drive, and once on disc.
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Jeff Yeackle
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Do you still have the negatives for most of these? There are places that will scan your negatives and prints for you, or you can buy/rent scanners and/or negative/slide scanners.

I wouldn't use a ball point pen, since it may press through to the front and the backing of prints isn't the best for ink absorption anyway. I would group them, and then include with each group your notes on a separate slip of paper. However if you don't care too much or you have duplicates (or the negative still) then have at it.
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Amy Wiles
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jyeackle wrote:
Do you still have the negatives for most of these? There are places that will scan your negatives and prints for you, or you can buy/rent scanners and/or negative/slide scanners.


Yes, I do! I'll have to look into getting the negatives scanned somehow. I was also just wondering how I should store those.



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Richard S
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Definitely, definitely, keep the negatives. They are more important than the prints. And, if you can, have the digital pictures made from the negatives.
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Mike Adams
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Here is a recent interview with tips on how to keep them for 10,000 years. No kidding.

http://www.cbc.ca/spark/2008/09/full-interview-ed-burtynsky-...

It's pretty interesting stuff. But the basic, practical advice for normal people with normal lifespans is to make sure you have prints, don't just store them digitally once you have them scanned in. Too risky. And if you want to go for the 10,000 year thing, good luck with it.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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photo advice
I wanted to add to remember Jatoha's advice about photos: throw lots away!!! Especially duplicates of the same thing, landscape shots without people, bad quality shots (i.e., blurry, under/overexposed, badly cropped, etc.) 20 shots of Ian eating a cupcake is cute today.......but in 10 years??????

kiss

I don't know about the negatives, it is up to you. (I don't keep mine!)

I also still have my little one's Kindergarten pictures in the original photo store envelopes as well!! blush
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Manisha DS
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If you can get a place to scan your negatives that's the best way. Scanning in photos or negatives yourself takes a lot of time. Plus, I prefer not to write on the backs of photos. You can print out labels and stick them on instead.

I remember spending many days scanning in photos for my grandma. They were really old photographs and I ended up touching up a few that had been damaged. It was totally worth it to see my grandma's eyes light up to see some of them fixed and reprinted.
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Amy Wiles
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I found some acid-free plastic pages that go in a 3-ring binder that are made for storing negatives. They were online at The Container Store. I think I might go that route.

Sticky labels is a good idea for the backs. I had some notes I took with some of the pictures on separate paper. The thing I worry about making a list is if the list and the photos ever get separated from the lists. Or if someone takes out a single photo or two. Sure, I plan for them all to be in their boxes, but who knows what will happen in 30 or 50 years to them.

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