Photo Conservation Project
I've started on a (organized) photo restoration project of all of the photographs taken over five decades, by three generations of my family. The main reason I started was because I began to notice some of the the photos from my childhood are fading, and we have photos that are over two decades old! I don't know how many first or second generation Indian-American families can say that they have in their possession such a collection of photos with such vastness, in subject and in number. I consider myself lucky to by part of a blood-relation that found great importance in capturing both important and trivial memories. Perhaps, at the time, it was the fascination with camera technology that motivated the photographers to take so make pictures, but I'm glad they did. Today, it's my fascination with technology that motivates me (among other things; keep reading). I'm using a Pandigital Photo scanner (http://www.pandigital.net/search.asp?Mode=Product&TypeID=9&ProductID=26). It's a simple little thing that scans normal-sized (photos 4" tall or less, even panoramics) at 600 dpi. It can even scan negatives. Again, its a simple device and gets the job done quickly. So far, I've scanned about 2400 photos.
I'm using Photoshop Lightroom to organize the photos. If you aren't using it already, stop whatever you're doing (reading this, obviously), and GO GET IT! It'll change your life.
The thing that makes this all worthwhile (and motivates me further), is all the awesome feedback and input I'm getting from family and those included in the photos. Many of them have not seen these photos in more than a decade (if not more, or if ever). I'm organizing and uploading them on Facebook, based on how I think they should be grouped (usually grouped by the format and subject matter of the original photos. The family who are responding are helping even further with the organizing effort by identifying what year the photos were taken and what's happening in the photos. This allows me to tag, geotag, and group the photos accordingly. Fascinating.