Business Scanning Photo in the Times of Coronavirus
Welcome to the new normal, maybe someday we’ll revert to the heady days of 2019 and this will all have been a bad dream but thus far 2020 is the year to forget. Leaving aside the impossibility of visiting family in Kent we had a trip to California cancelled. However things have been happening in the world of 1Scan, so here’s an update.
Photo Print Scanning
For many years New Year has been a bumper time for photo scanning orders. I think people see and hear so much in terms of new year, fresh starts, resolutions etc and it reminds them of all those jobs they had in mind 12 months ago that still haven’t been sorted. We usually get a surge in the first few weeks of January.
Lockdown was another January for many clients. Maybe people decided to get their long hoped for photo album projects underway and batches of photos started to arrive. Print scanning has been pretty solid but all good things, and lockdowns, come to an end. Over the last couple of weeks order volumes have dropped back to where we’d expect at this time of year.
One of the saddest reasons people have for getting photos scanned is for funeral and memorial services. Typically this is done in a rush and tends to be for local clients who hand deliver images. You might have thought there’s be a surge in this type of client but thankfully we’ve had no more than usual.
Like many photographers I’ve been looking back through my personal archives and dug out some negatives I’d meant to scan. Professional photographers and keen amateurs have been doing the same. Whilst we have had many negatives to scan the number of images ent in have been pretty small – in one case just two negatives – and you can see where we often get strip after strip of 35mm negatives clients have obviously cut individual frames and sent them for negative scanning.
People have gone way back too. In addition to the most common formats we’ve had a lot of old medium format and large format negatives to scan. It’s been amazing to see how good a scan you can get from a camera working in the inter war years, even after all this time.
It’s been clear that you’ve all been up in your lofts or right at the back of your cupboards and wardrobes fishing out boxes of old slides. At this end we’ve had a bumper crop of 35mm material to scan. Kodak was and from the scanning perspective remains, the dominant film supplier but it’s been refreshing to see we didn’t all follow the herd to this yellow boxes. Recently we’ve seen something from every manufacturer I could think of, and a few that were new to me.
Even after nearly 20 years we still get vast amounts sent in for slide scanning. Looking back over the time we’ve been in business, and all the types of photographic material we’ve digitised by far the peaks of the mountain have been photo and slide scanning.
One of the most noticeable aspects of dealing with clients has been the significant reluctance clients have to trust the Post Office. On the one hand we’d get much more business if people felt they could trust Postman Pat, on the other we do well with people who want to deliver work in person.
That route was closed down during lockdown but judging by the level of work we’ve received people have either decided to trust the mail (and courier services) or felt they had no choice. Often we receive private projects delivered to us via the client’s employer’s courier company; none since lockdown. As things eased local clients have delivered in person. Just like to pizza man they’ve volunteered to leave their parcels on the doorstep and haven’t been concerned about me picking them up with gloved hands and leaving them in strong sunlight for a while.
As a keen amateur photographer myself I’ve suffered from not being able to go out to shoot. My own New Lockdown Year Resolution was to master Affinity Photo and get better at editing my own digital images. I forced myself to spend at least an hour per day learning what the program does. After many weeks of assiduous graft I had to admit defeat and give up. Instead I jumped ship and went over to Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. Edits that I struggled to make in Affinity I can do achieve quickly and easily in Lightroom. I enjoy Adobe so much I even bought a book. Yes, a computer manual – who knew you can still get these. It arrived via Amazon who I’d imagine are the huge winners from this pandemic.