Read More about to rescue your photo's before disaster strikes.
Every year there are over 550 disasters throughout the world. For victims of fire, floods, tornadoes and other natural disasters, family photos are among the worst things to lose.
Read More about to rescue your photo's before disaster strikes.
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Read More http://www.archives.gov/preservation/family-archives/storing-photos.html
The preservation of photographs, and all documents and artworks, depends on the storage environment and the storage enclosures. Many institutions have climate controlled storage rooms with purified air, kept at constant moderate or cool temperatures (e.g., 65-70F) and moderate relative humidities (e.g., 35-50%). Some institutions even have cold vaults for certain types of photographs that are very prone to deterioration, such as color photographs and older films. Unfortunately, these conditions are not easily found or maintained in homes! However, there are things you can do to improve the storage climate for your valuable photographs in your home: store your photographs in the coolest and driest spot in your home that stays that way year round. Finished basements frequently are cool, but they are usually too damp for photo storage unless they are dehumidified. Dampness should be avoided as it causes photos to stick together, and promotes mold growth. Above ground interior closets maintain fairly constant temperatures throughout the year, and should be considered for storage.
All plastic and paper materials used to house and store valuable and heirloom photographs should pass the ANSI IT9.16 Photographic Activity Test (PAT). (The PAT was developed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and is a test that determines whether or not a storage material will cause fading or staining in photographs.) In addition, other storage materials such as envelopes, folders, sleeves, and boxes should meet the standards described in ANSI IT9.2 Photographic Processed Films, Plates, and Papers--Filing Enclosures and Storage Containers. Many manufacturers make storage materials which meet these two standards and advertise them in their catalogs.
Look for paper enclosures that are made from a high quality, non-acidic, lignin-free paper (buffered or unbuffered are OK) made from cotton or highly purified wood pulps. Paper envelopes with center seams should be avoided--if the seam adhesive causes fading or staining it will happen in the middle of your photograph. If you do use an envelope with a center seam, place the back side of the photo against the seam--any deterioration would have to work its way through the back before attacking the image on the front.
Look for plastic enclosures made from uncoated pure polyethylene, polypropylene or polyester (also called Mylar D or Mellinex 516). These are considered stable and non-damaging to photographs. Polyester is crystal clear and is more rigid than polyethylene and polypropylene. None of these recommended plastics have any odor to them, while polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic does have a strong odor (the new car smell). Avoid the use of PVC plastics--they generate acids which can fade the photograph in time. In addition, the plastic can stick to items inside and, in some types of photographs (and printed items such as baseball cards), actually cause the image to transfer to the plastic. For these reasons, PVC enclosures should not be used for valuable photographs or those you want to preserve for a long time.
Albums are an ideal storage method for photographic prints, especially snapshots and heirloom photographs--the photographs can be safely stored and organized, and safely viewed, without inflicting damage from frequent handling. Albums should be used to store selected groups of photographs, as they are expensive and somewhat bulky storage options. Not all photographs are really worth keeping; snapshot collections should be weeded of poor prints (blurred images, bad exposures) or less desirable photos (multiples, poorly cropped images) before housing the best ones in an album or other storage method (described below).
Besides albums, there are many different types of storage enclosures designed for the different photographic formats and sizes. These include folders, sleeves, and envelopes. The choice of enclosure depends not only on resources but also the frequency that the photos will be handled for viewing and their current fragility. In general, if a photograph is handled frequently or is fragile, it should be stored in its own enclosure such as a folder, envelope or plastic sleeve, then grouped in a box. Photos which are handled very frequently should be stored in their own plastic folders or sleeves so that they can be viewed without removing from the enclosure. Plastic enclosures also protect the photo surface from fingerprinting while it is being viewed. Remember, it is best to always hold a photograph by its edges, supporting it from underneath with your hand. Individual enclosures also protect from wear and tear and provide physical support to fragile or damaged photos. Very fragile photos such as those with large tears and breaks, brittle photos, photos with broken mounts or those with a damaged surface can be put in one of the enclosures listed above with a rigid piece of paperboard behind the photo for extra support. A less expensive option for storage is to group photos in folders. This approach is fine for photos that are in good condition and are rarely handled. Remember that damaged photos can be copied or photocopied, and the copy used instead to protect valuable originals.
Photographs can also be stored in plastic pocket pages and standard size plastic sleeves, grouped in folders for organization, then stacked in a box. Photographs 8 x10 inches or smaller can be stored vertically on their long edges in standard size boxes which are available for many photographic formats, including modern and nineteenth-century photographs. Photos larger than 8 x 10 inches, or those with damaged edges (brittle, torn) should be stored flat in small stacks inside standard size boxes. Groups of similar sized photos which are all the same type, such as modern 4 x 6 inch color snapshots, or older 2-1/4 inch black-and white snapshots, can be stored vertically or horizontally together without extra housings--photos which are the same type are usually safe to store in contact with each other. Boxes should be neither over stuffed or under filled. Over stuffing causes damage when photos are pulled out or filed away; under filling causes the photos to slump and curl.
Lastly, the safest, and most expensive, way to store photographs is to mat them in high quality ragboard or matboard. This method is excellent for photos that are to be framed and displayed.
Article by the Library of Congress
Our personal photos, papers, music and videos are important to us. They record the details of our lives and help define us.
But increasingly our possessions and our communications are no longer material: they’re digital.
Digital files are encoded to represent text, images, audio, video and more.
They are fragile and completely dependent on software and machines to make them accessible
We CAN preserve our digital possessions and keep them accessible for years to come, but we have to archive them and actively manage them.
No matter what type of file you want to save – audio, video, text and so on
– they all require thesame essential preservation strategy:
• Identify what you want to save
• Decide what is most important to you
• Organize the content
• Save copies in different places
Article by Dotty Weber
There has always been an issue with the images that we all love to share on Facebook and many other social networking internet sites being used without our permission. Sometimes even sold by others for their own profits. While I've never liked putting a big ole ugly copyright stamp on my images I've found a bit of a work around as displayed in this image.
If you would like to use this method I've given step by step instructions for you to create your own action to do this below:
You might have to move the copyright symbol or your text layer to fit the image but you will have the layers ready for you to make your adjustments.
Hope you found this helpful!
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So what does this strange picture have to do with making your own copyright symbol you might wonder. Well from my previous blog post showing how to create a 'copyright' action I had promised the next step in automating the creating of a web-sized image or many images at once. This would be that next step using Adobe Photoshop CS5.
1) Open one or several images that are all of the same format. For this example we will open up several portrait images from Adobe Bridge. To open several completed JPEG images click on each image holding the Ctrl button down. This will select each image. Then either click enter or right click on one of the selected images and then select 'Open in Adobe Photoshop'. All images will appear in Photoshop with the active image in the preview area of your screen and all others in the tabs above the preview. That is if you have your Photoshop screen set up as I do.
See screen print below for an example of two images opened.
2) Run the 'Copyright Portrait' action that you created in the prior blog post 'How To Do Your Own Copyright Symbol' to apply the copyright to the 'active' image.
3) Click on each image by selecting the 'un-highlighted' image tab to make the next image active and run the 'Copyright Portrait' action. Do this for each portrait image you have opened in Photoshop.
4) When all images have the Copyright Symbols added and arranged to your liking you are ready to re-size the images and make them ready to add to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, your website or share online. Here are the steps:
5) Click on 'File' at the top left hand size of your screen. This will open the drop downs.
6) Click on 'Scripts' towards the bottom of the list which will bring out a 'flyout' box.
7) In this 'flyout' box, click on 'Images Processor'. The box that will appear next is the same as the screen print at the top of this blog post. The items to pay attention to are:
a) Select the images to process. I use the 'Use Open Images' button as I want the images I've just copyrighted to be processed.
b) Select location to save processed images. I use the 'Save in Same Location' button as I like the copyrighted images to be saved in the same location as the original. A new folder will be created in this folder called 'JPEG'
c) File Type. This has several options.
d) Preferences. You can add Copyright Info which would embed into the images by typing that into the box and click on the 'Include ICC Profile' box if you wish.
Old images might still be the most valuable ones that you'll always hold dear. But after a while, the colors start to fade away and the quality will gradually get severely damaged. That's why you have to preserve them using a photo scanning and video transfer service. You could scan them, but unless you're a professional who has specialized equipment or want to take the time to make it your hobby it will take awhile to become good at it. Those unique memories deserve to be brought back to life in the best way possible.
There are a few things that you should take into consideration when you choose a specialized service to transform your dear old memories into digital media: ease of use, turnaround time, cost, image quality / retouching, delivery options, store drop off and pick up, trust and privacy.
Ease of Use
Look for a clear and straightforward ordering process. The site should contain plenty of relevant and easy-to-understand information that would help you decide whether the service is suitable or not for your needs. Avoid complicated sites as they could lead to misunderstandings and an overall negative experience.
Typically, each scanning or transfer service has a turnaround time between 5 and 20 days. This period will obviously increase if you have very many photos and videos. It's ok to choose a more expensive service if you want to get them back fast, but make sure that the company doesn't compromise on quality just to have the quickest turnaround time. Also, good companies might have a large workload expect them to deliver your digital media no sooner than 3-6 weeks. If you have to choose between s service with a faster turnaround time and a reputable one that will take more time to get the job done, always look for the premium one where the satisfaction is guaranteed. You want your scans perfect and choosing a provider that is reputable with good testimonials will help guarantee it.
Almost all scanning services charge about $0.23-0.30 per photo. A few cents more or less add up if you have a bulk order and you're looking to save some money too. But the cheapest and less popular one might disappoint you, so it's better to look for professionals who can handle your precious memories accordingly. Video transfer varies according to the company you ask so you should tell them all the details to find out the price.
When you entrust the most precious videos and frail photos that you have to a company, you really have to trust that they will take good care of your photos and they'll do a good job. If you go to a local image scanning and video transfer service, ask your friends and family if they can share any details about their work. Look for a popular one. When you go there several times and they never have any customers around, that might be a red flag. Also, don't trust sites that don't have any reviews anywhere. It might be a scam.
Article by Dottie Weber
I have talked with many people just starting out and wondering how to set up their camera to get images they can be proud of and are what they had envisioned in their mind. I've been taking digital photos for over ten years and am still learning.
Here is my advice:
With that being said here is what I did to get this shot.
This was early evening at an indoor arena with East and West open areas. There was not any spot lights and I did not use a flash, just the light from the low sun. I was shooting with a Canon 7D and Canon 28-135mm lens using shutter priority at 160th second. I kept changing from ISO 400 to 800 and either spot metering or partial metering. Also I kept changing the exposure compensation to allow more light in but making sure I kept a shutter speed fast enough to stop the action.
Now go out there and shoot. It's the best way to learn and it's so danged much fun...especially when you get the results you were hoping for.
Manual Settings This is quickly becoming my favorite shooting mode as long as the lighting is even and not constantly changing. I try for an aperture of F8 to as wide open as possible depending on how close the subject is. And the shutter no slower than 750th of a second, the faster the shutter the better. Unless you are going for motion blur and panning then a 30th or 60th of a second can give some fun results. I try to keep the ISO as low as possible like 200 or maybe 400.
The secret to using manual is to keep an eye on the needle on your Canon camera viewfinder. If it is in the middle your exposure should be 'right on'. Changing either the aperture, shutter or ISO will move the needle either to the right of middle which will lighten your image or to the left of middle to darken your image.
Aperture Priority (AV) I still like this mode a bit more than using a manual setting. Sadly I must admit I very often forget to look at the needle in my viewfinder when in manual. Then especially with wildlife you'll miss a great shot because you haven't changed your settings when you've gone into a forest after being in a wide open meadow.
So with that being said I like shooting in AV priority mode with an aperture wide open like at 4 or 5.6 as long as I have plenty of light. I again try to keep the ISO as low as possible like 200 or 400 to get fast shutter speeds. With those wide open apertures you get that great background blurring and sharp subjects that you have locked your focus on.
Shutter Priority (TV) I will use TV when the light has gotten very dim and I can't trust AV to stop the action enough to keep the blurring under control. Try to steady the camera if you aren't using a tripod or monopod by leaning against something. Depending on how fast your subject moves a 500th should work if the subject isn't a real fast mover. If you are trying to shot a bird or galloping horse a 1,000th is really needed to get a sharp image if you are steady. What you will find in TV is you might be getting shots but they will be very dark. To avoid this you can either set your ISO higher or even try the automatic ISO setting. I never used this automatic ISO setting as I didn't want my camera to be shooting at one of those astronomical ISO settings. But since I've upgraded my Canon 7D with the new firmware that I blogged about earlier I was able to set the maximum ISO to an acceptable level. I still like to set my own ISO but that is always subject to change, I never thought I would like to shoot in manual mode either. So I never say never.
And always, always check your LCD often no matter what mode you shoot in to see if you are getting the results you want.
AND ONE LAST TIP: I never ever believed all those photographers who said 'Turn off the image stabilization when shooting fast moving action in the burst mode'. I really thought they were crazy. I fought this for a long time until I tried it.....the results were many more images in focus than ever before.
Remember, I'm by no means an expert at this but I keep on working at it. Some of it might be helpful in finding your photographic road.
Here is the step by step procedure to give your photos the painterly look that you see on this sample. I use Photoshop CS5 so these instructions may need to be adjusted a bit according to your system.
This artsy touch doesn't seem to be something for every image but works really well with scenery and some nature shots. It certainly can make some nice images even more stunning. Enjoy.
Death Valley, Yosemite & Mono Lake in One Vacation is possible! The images in this blog was from a trip we made in April several years ago. Please see the link at the bottom of this blog as to why I suggest you go in February.
Seeing these three beautiful places in California in our 2-week vacation was our goal. But what time of the year seemed to be most favorable to us? We settled on the first 2 weeks in April. Here are some of the things we considered during our planning:
If we went later than April, Death Valley will be very hot. So we made this our 1st destination and even with that the temperature peaked at 97° in Badwater. So going in February the weather would be awesome. But another thing to consider for going in early April is that the spring flowers can be spectacular with some luck and the right weather conditions being on your side. So many decisions to be made!
To include Mono Lake into this trip we drove up Hwy 395 from Death Valley to Lee Vining which is the nearest town to Mono Lake. We had one snowstorm overnight but by mid-morning it had melted. Again in February you'll probably see more snow. By the way, the tufas at Mono Lake are way cool covered in snow. One more down side to February is missing a visit to the great ghost town of Bodie as the road will not be passable yet.
The road over Tioga Pass into Yosemite Valley from Lee Vining is only 77 miles does not open until mid May. This causes a detour to a pass that is open, meaning about a 6 hour drive. This was our route:
If we went earlier than April, Yosemite would still be quite frozen. Even in mid April we had two overnight lows of 15° and 19° and one snowstorm overnight which melted by early morning. This time of the year also means we escaped the summertime crowds and saw the waterfalls flowing throughout the valley. So Yosemite in February means you need to be ready for possibly a lot of snow and very cold temperatures.
But here is my MAIN reason to suggest a visit in February. You see there is this crazy, beautiful photographic event at Horsetail Falls that happens only around mid to late February. Conditions have to be just right, enough snow melt for water to be coming over the cliff, and enough of a break in the clouds at just the right time around sunset for the light to hit the falls to see what looks like lava flowing where Horsetail Falls should be. I've never seen it but it's on my bucket list of things to photograph. And as I've not seen it myself I have no images I can share. But here is a link from Yosemite Park to visit and see why it's a must see! http://www.yosemitepark.com/horsetail-fall.aspx
We had a fabulous trip in April but I would bet you would have a 'WOW' trip if you go in February. I know the next time we go I'll be aiming for a February trek!
Focus Blending with Photoshop CS5
I used Adobe Photoshop CS5 for this tutorial so there may be some steps that will vary. Many of the photo editing tips I will show have been self-taught so we can be learning together. Please always feel free to make comments if you give this technique a try for us all to learn together.
Here I am blending two images with different focal points to make one image with sharpness front to back using CS5. I knew there was a process to do this even though I've never had great success at it, but I still shoot many images with merging them later in mind. Always a good thing to keep in mind, even if you can't do it yet, take the images for when you have found the way to create the magic. Memory is cheap.
I have recently found CS5 has a very easy process to make this happen. It is most useful on subjects with no movement. These images above are not a perfect subject but I included a step to help align the subjects.
These two images above were shot on an overcast day and in the shade. A good setting to cut my teeth on as there was a slight breeze and low light preventing a small aperture.Camera settings:
AND HERE IS THE FINISHED PRODUCT OF 'FOCUS BLENDING'
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