As I get older, I find that the Simon and Garfunkel line from Old Friends (on the Bookends album) I used as my title means more to me. After I lost both my parents in the past few years, old family photos seem more precious. I have some old photos and albums from my folks that are not in the best shape. Some photos are bent, some are in those horrible old “magnetic” albums with the glue that damages the photos, and all of them need to be preserved so they don’t deteriorate even more. I wanted to scan them so I’d have digital copies, but it was a task I just couldn’t face right after I lost my parents. Now, they’re just sitting in a box waiting until I have time to get to them. There’s a company called ScanDigital.com that can make preserving your old photos and home movies as simple as stacking them in a box and handing them over to the UPS delivery person.
ScanDigital doesn’t require you to count out the number of photos you’re sending in, nor do you have to remove them from albums. You go to their website to start your order – or talk to a representative online, if that’s easier for you. You’ll get a UPS label to ship your photos. ScanDigital tracks your photos while they are in transit, then they track and inspect them through every step of the digital transformation process. Once they receive your package, your photos are inventoried, scanned, enhanced with minor corrections (color, red-eye, minor blemish removal), inspected, and further edited, if needed. In all, your photos get triple inspections before they are ready to be loaded onto a CD/DVD/hard drive and returned to you along with your originals. ScanDigital will even make them available online so you can share them with others.
Pricing starts at 48 cents per photo scanned at 300dpi; photos in albums are a little more. They can even scan negatives and slides. All work is done manually, and your photos are kept grouped together, so all photos in an album stay together in the correct order. You don’t have to pay in advance, since you don’t have to count all your photos before sending them in. After work is completed, you’ll be billed before your photos are returned. If you’re sure you have more than 1000 photos, you can prepay for the first 1000 and receive a discount on the rest.
If you find your photographic memories are fading and crumbling away, you owe it to yourself to investigate digital preservation.