Thursday, May 30, 2013

Scanning and Skinning

On Tuesday I got mail from my Aunt Shirley, a big package of old family photos to post  on the blog set up for my Grandma Audrey's stories.  I was tickled to get them and couldn't wait to begin scanning them yesterday morning. What I thought would take an hour or so ended up taking much, much longer.

The first few photos scanned beautifully, then the scanner went nuts. It didn't die, but it might as well have, because its output became virtually useless. Here's an example of what it did to a photo that was lying perfectly straight on the scanner bed:

That wouldn't do, obviously, so I tried again:

I tried half a dozen more times with no better results. The printer/copier/scanner would copy the photo perfectly, but it wouldn't scan properly for anything. Go figure.

I Googled for help, tried everything I read, and nothing straightened out the crooked scans. I was just about to give up when I thought of using my camera to take a high-res image of each photo Shirley had sent. That worked much better:

Grandpa Erna (standing far right) and 
Grandma Audrey (seated at right on the sofa).

Now, don't misunderstand me. I certainly don't mean to imply that the quality of the picture above is good. After all, it's a photo of a photocopied enlargement of a picture taken more than 40 years ago. I'm just saying that the camera did a better job than the scanner in more ways than reproducing a properly aligned image.

I'm also saying there's more than one way to skin a cat.


  1. Glad to see I am not the only one tech challanged

  2. I've found my camera does a better job than my scanner quite often! I feel your pain!

  3. 4th Sister, you're not alone. In fact, I think we have plenty of company. I do have to say, though, that sometimes I blame problems on my lack of technical skills when the real problem is that the doggone thing is broken.

    Holly, the camera did a good enough job that I actually went back and photographed the pictures I'd successfully scanned earlier. They all turned out better, and I was able to enlarge some very tiny photos that way.


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