Thursday, August 20, 2015

Throw Back Thursday tips for copying old photographs

Throw back Thursday

If you are on social media you know that today people post old photos and remember loved ones. This is a photo of me and my little sister with our great grandmother "Mama Benfield".

Our family had a print of this and this is how I made a copy of the photo.

I put the photo on a table and using a tripod put the camera parallel to the table. I put two hot shoe flashes off to the sides at 45º to the table. Got a good exposure and custom white balance.

The reason for the custom white balance is to counter act any color bounce from the room.

Then I just took a stack of photos and copied away shooting in RAW.

My grandfather R. Knolan Benfield

My grandmother Emma Hartsell Benfield

My mother Bonita Benfield Leary

My sister Emma and my Dad David Leary with me

My sister Emma, my grandfather "Daddy B" and grandmother "Nana B"
I brought all the photos into Lightroom. Kept them in color and made adjustments using the sliders. Here is the first photo.

After I made all the adjustments using Temp and Tint even for contrast control then I switched the photo to Black and White before exporting.

The good news with all this copy work is now they are digitized and searchable.

After I exported the images as JPEGs I opened them with PhotoMechanic, which I prefer over Lightroom when working in metadata and identified each photo in the caption. Now for the first time we know when for example my mother had this photo taken of her.

Now on PC or Mac when you search for "Bonita Leary 3rd Grade" this photo will pop up in the search even if you don't have the software to see the embedded text.

As you scan old slides, negatives and then make copies of your prints be sure to add the text so they are searchable and in the future your family will know the who, what, where, why and when for the photos. This will make them even more valuable to the generations that come after us.

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