Genealogists are well-known paper-lovers. We tend to hang on to each photocopy, printout, and note just in case we need to refer to it again. But paper items are susceptible to damage: from water, from fire, from age. Saving digital copies can help protect those precious photos for the long haul. Here are some tips for making digital copies of your family pictures.
Professional archives recommend using a flatbed scanner with scanning resolution of 600 dpi for most family photographs. In this example, we will scan a photo using 600 dpi, 24-bit color, TIFF format.
Scanning a Photo Step by Step
1. Prepare your scanner
Clean the glass scanning bed with a dry or slightly damp microfiber cloth.
2. Prepare your photo
• Use a soft brush to dust your photo if necessary.
• Use clean hands or wear white cotton gloves.
• Handle the photos by the edges.
• Place the photo in the upper corner (usually indicated by an arrow), right side down.
3. Turn on the scanner and start the software
Make your selections.
• 24-bit color
• 600 dpi
• Original size
4. If you wish, open the File Saving window and change the Prefix and Number to start a new project. You can also change this when you move the file to your external hard drive archive location.
5. Preview your scan by clicking the Preview button. A Preview window appears. If your photograph is not selected by a dotted line (marquee), click the Marquee Tool.
A dotted selection line should appear around the image. If necessary, adjust the marquee to fit your image by grabbing a corner or side and dragging to include the entire photo.
6. When you are satisfied with the selection, press Scan. The image will be scanned and saved to the destination folder with the filename we set earlier. Depending on the speed of your scanner, this may take several seconds.
Disaster Preparedness for Genealogists
Don’t Miss the Vital Steps in This Live Presentation!
Date: Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013
Presenter: Denise May Levenick
Duration: 30 minutes
Price: Price: $29.99
September is National Disaster Preparedness Month. Are you ready for the Big One?
No matter where you call home, genealogists everywhere worry about the future of their work and their family keepsakes. If you’re lucky enough to live in a place where natural disasters are few and far between, you could still lose your genealogical life to fire, flood, theft or computer failure, but don’t despair. The ship is still afloat.
With a little foresight and minimum expense, you can combine old-fashioned common sense and 21st century technology to help your family history weather any storm.
Just sign up now: This webinar will give you practical ideas for protecting your keepsakes and research from fire, flood, and power loss, as well as share techniques for treating photos and documents that have been damaged by smoke or water.
Learn more here >