Digitizing Analogue Photos

I listen to a photography podcast, tfttf (Tips from the top floor) by Chris Marquardt. In episode 663 Chris interviews Sina Farhat from Gothenborg, Sweden, who tells us about his method of scanning film with a DSLR. Here is his site with his setup details.

That got me thinking about all the analogue photos I have sitting in photo albums out of sight & out of mind, and weather I could do the same with them.

Well the answer is yes you can & todate I have digitized over 450 of our old images, with very good success.

Below is an photo of the setup that I ended up with.


The setup above has the following;

Lightroom using  tethered capture, this gets the image straight into Lightroom without having to import, one step removed in the work flow.

The Canon 60D has a 50mm f1.4 attached set to AV mode. The lens is on manual focus and set to f8.0, to give a bit of depth of field in case the photo is not placed in the same spot every time. ISO is set to 100.

I shoot mRAW as I feel that the extra RAW gives is wasted when shooting photos this way. The white balance is set to florescent as I have fluro tubes above this work bench.

The black foam is to cut down reflections I was getting on the photos from the bench. The triangle cardboard helps to get the photo in the same place shot after shot.

The last item that I feel brings all this together & really makes it all work is the piece of Octopad attached to the triangle cardboard. This dry erase sticky note uses micro suction technology, which is what I use to stick the old photos to, in order to hold them place for shooting the new digital image.  The micro suction pad really works well holding the photo. When it gets a bit dirty I just wash it with warm soapy water.

After I have the image in Lightroom, I need to crop it and tag it and only some need additional processing as you are usually starting out with a good photo.

I have about another sixteen(16), now four(4) albums with around 100 photos per album, still a way to go.

This method of digitizing photos really shortens the time required and the work flow steps is reduced when compared to using a scanner to do the same.