Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Easily amused

My bulldog and my boyfriend snore in exactly the same way, it does amuse me. Maybe, I am easily amused? He is lying under my desk - my bulldog not my boyfriend - and I have my toes tucked under his tummy to keep them warm, while I work on my computer.

I have been scanning all of my family photos for quite some time. I was very nearly finished, so I can give 100 years of family photos to my brother and my sister. I was at the stage of transferring them all onto USB's for both of them. I have been doing it for the longest time and the end was definitely in sight. 

On the weekend, after cleaning up my study for the previous week, or so, I had found a few more photos, so I decided to scan them and add them to the collection. It was a great feeling, adding a few lost images to a huge collection. I originally scanned most of the photos on Mark's scanner, but since then I have bought my own scanner. As I added the new images, I realised that my new scanner is a trillion times better than Mark's old scanner on which I scanned the bulk of the photos. Damn! Shit! I was pissed off about it. The old scanner scanned the images into small pictures not unlike the originals. The new scanner turns them into big modern images in which all of the detail comes alive. Bugger!

I remember the exact moment that I decided what I had to do. It was on Sunday night, at David's birthday party, that the thought came into my mind. I have to rescan every one of the photos. Ur!

So that is what I have been doing this week. I still can't really believe it.

So I did a little OH&S on myself this morning, picking up my stuff from the coffee table and moving it to my newly cleaned study desk. Sitting on the floor at my coffee table all day is just giving me a sore neck and back.

So, here I am, gritted teeth - re what I now have to do - and all. The scanning is the relatively easy part of the project. It is the restoration of the 50 year old, 60 year old, and older images, that really takes all the time. That is the bit I love, I love the challenge of it. Even the most damaged photo can be photoshopped back to life. I love thinking about how a photo was taken, lets say in 1940, and how it has spent 74 years as a print, gathering 74 years of dirt and damage and I am able to use 21st century technology - technology the photographer never even dreamed of - to bring it back to life.

But to do it all again? Grrrr! My immanent sense of achievement has just evaporated, flown out that preverbal window.

Still, they are all dated, a lot of them to the day, and catalogued, that has also taken an inordinate amount of time and I don't have to do that again, so that is the bright side, the glass half full moment. Half of them were dated, as a lot of them were sent back home from overseas with a small description on the back. Others, I got my mum to tell me the year, before she declined into la la land. And other's I have made an informed guess, comparing clothes and cars and houses and peoples ages in photos of which I knew the dates. This was very important, as I have a whole portrait album of all of my relatives from the late part of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century which doesn't have one name next to any photo. So while all of my relatives are superbly documented, 100 years later nobody knows who any of them are.

Originally, I was leaving the white boarders, for historical reasons and because that allows me to save those lovely soft edges of the image itself, which are so whimsical. But, now I am cutting them off, as it makes the image bigger and it makes it an image, rather than a scan of an old photo. I'm not sure which is best, I'm torn on the issue.

Okay... where was I?

2 comments:

Victor said...

What brand/model is the new scanner?

FletcherBeaver said...

It is a newer cannon printer/scanner, although it is not brand new now by any means.