Photo Scanning Tips

Here are some tips for preserving your photos.

  • Assemble the following: the photograph, computer and scanner
  • Scan the photo with the following setting
    • 300 dpi scan size (600 dpi for photos 5″x7″ and smaller)
    • color setting (even for black and white photos)
    • save as  JPEG (.jpg) with light compression (90% and above)
  • Title the file with as much information as available (names, dates, place, etc)
  • Put all the scanned images in a folder. The name of the folder should give credit to the source of the pictures.
  • You can also add a “readme” document in the folder that details the story behind the pictures. However, remember that it is every easy for this document to become separated from the photo.

This will create very large files for each photo (somtimes 10-20 MB), but these settings utilize a very high perservation standard. As a result, I can scan once and re-use many times, in many ways.  The scanned photos are added to my archives. I then copy the archived file when I need to use it another application. For example, the photos on this website are all retouched on a Photoshop-type application and saved as a JPEG to create a file size around 100 to 150 KB. The original archived image has not been altered.