My mother has a print, a little over 8x10", just about a hundred years old, of my great-great-grandfather and his children. Obviously it's B&W, somewhat sepia-toned. If my family ever had the negative, nobody knowns where it is. The print is remarkably good, especially after all these years (although, if it makes any difference, it is possible that my grandfather, a very serious amateur photographer, made it from the negative in the 1950's or 1960's). My mother would like to make several copies. Price is an issue by not necessarily determinative. What method(s) can you recommend? Is there some particular place you'd send it? Thanks.
I've taken several pictures of old family pictures like this. I use a tripod with slow B&W film. Be usure the picture and camera are as square to each other as possible and use the slowest shutter speed and smallest f-stop as you can. Filter the direct sun thru a defuser or plain white sheet so you don't get direct sun, or do it on an overcast day. No flash!
Other option is to take the original to a good lab and have them make a negative, but this can get costly.
[IMG]/ibb/skins/default/emoticons/cool.gif[/IMG] I've made dozens of negatives from prints like this for friends and family over several years. B & W film is not necessary, color will do. Find a MACRO (read "copy" or flat field) lens, tripod mounted, of course - as previously mentioned, flat lighting (I've used screen porch or garage during daylight hours). To copy an 8" X 10" with a 200mm macro (full frame) will require a long "working distance" - you'll end up 8 to 10 feet away. Then move in and shoot individual faces, etc. - if the original is good (fairly grain-free, as many of them are), you'll get some astonishingly good results!! All I've ever needed to do exposure-wise is follow in-camera meter, but to insure good DOF, stop down to f16 or slower - let the shutter fall where it may.
Watch for any reflection off the print, jockey it around to reduce same to minimum - as posted, endeavor to shoot "straight on" - ie, lens parallel to print...
If you've got the macro lens, it's a piece of cake..... Good luck!
The statements on copying and scanning are correct. I still think the best way, and the method we use is a medium (6x7cm) or large format (4x5in) camera on a copy stand, usually Velvia film for B&W or color subjects, scan the transparency, correct it in PS, and print. The studio/lab I use charges about $40-60 plus additional prints. If extensive PS work is needed it's more, but that's not my department.
If you plan to do it yourself, I recommend the following:
For medium format cameras, use Kodak Verichrome Pan exposed at ISO 100 with increased developement of about 10%.
For 35mm cameras, use Kodak TMX, exposed at ISO 80, with increased developement of about 10%.
In both instances, use a Kodak grey card ,or similar to judge exposure, and expose on manual mode. Use either a sturdy copy stand or tripod.
An alternative would be to use one of the Kodak B/W CN types of film which can be developed by your local mini lab. This usually would work well if you desire a "sepia" image. It probably would also be the most economical in the long run.If you chose to go this route, I also recommend that you take the original to the lab so the lab people can see what result you are sh@@ting for.
If you don't want to scan or copy it yourself, many camera stores and 1-hour developers have scanners and can do a good job for a reasonable price. I recently did that with a 90 year old print of my aunt and uncle.
You've gotten some real good advice. Personnally, if I had a 100yr old print that could not be replaced (obviously), the first thing I'd do is to take it to a pro lab and have them make one copy of it. The next thing I'd do is put the original up and out of harms way. I'd use the copy to work with.
Scan it, it is better quality than photographing it.
I agree with this advice on a certain level. I would only scan it if I had a high quality scanner, decent editing software (Photoshop being the best, cheaper Paint Shop Pro by Jasc a close second) and the knowledge to do a good scan and print. (Meaning accurate monitor and printer color/calibration profiles, etc)
Otherwise I have had good results using the film and copy stand method, though this requires a good macro lens to pull off succesfully too.
Find a LPS (local photo store) that has the scanning station as suggested and have them do it for you if you want it scanned. The printed results should be better as most of the printers attached to these units are dye-sub printers and not an ink jet like you probably have at home.