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Restorapic Photo Restoration
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Restoring Memories - A Photo Restoration Artist
Restoring Memories - A Photo Restoration Artist

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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Wonderful Women Wednesday: Portia James: Senior Curator and Historian Portia James (1953-2015) pioneered a community-based approach at the Anacostia Community Museum and led the exhibitions, publications and collections programs. She researched African American material culture. #Groundbreaker Blog Categories: Smithsonian HistoryBlog Tags: Wonderful Women WednesdayAnacostia Community Museum
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: An Intern’s Guide on How to Digitize a Field Book: Heidi Charles, Summer 2018 Field Book Project Digitization Intern The equipment, technology, and process that goes into digitizing field books, from an intern’s perspective. What is a field book and how do you digitize one? These were the first two questions I asked when I came on board at the Archives as the Summer 2018 Field Book Project Digitization Intern. During the course of my internship, I discovered the answer to both questions and learned a lot about digitization practices and standards at the Smithsonian. According to the Biodiversity Heritage Library, “Field books, also called field notes or field documentation, are original records of scientific discovery. They are primary source documents that describe the events leading up to and including the collection of specimens or observations during field research.” Though field books share a common purpose - recording scientific discovering at the sight of investigation - they vary greatly in content and format. Some of the formats I came across while digitizing this summer include: transparencies, such as slides and stereo slides, negatives (some of which are glass plate), photographs, prints, diaries, notebooks, spreadsheets, maps, pamphlets, letters, and charts. Because the field books are so diverse in format, different digitization equipment must be used for differing formats to ensure the best image quality. The options available at the Archives include a flatbed scanner, a book scanner, and a professional grade camera on a copy stand setup. When deciding which digitization equipment to use, there are four things I consider: the size of the item, image quality, the compatibility with each digitization equipment, and efficiency. Size The size of an item is important to pay attention to because each digitization equipment has different capabilities in what it can accommodate, and the overall output quality produced. The flatbed scanner can accommodate anything under 12.2” X 17.2” and is a great option for small or medium sized loose-leaf items such as small manuscripts, photographs, index cards, or anything under 10 inches on the longest side. Conversely, oversized materials such as maps, spreadsheets, or other large items are best suited for overhead camera digitization on a copy stand setup. Overhead camera digitization is an ideal method of digitization because the height of the camera and the lens can capture a wider field of view. The book scanner is great for medium sized loose-leaf or bound material. Image quality The minimum resolution requirement at the Smithsonian Institution Archives is 6000 pixels on the longest side of the image, scanned at a minimum of 600 pixels per inch (ppi). A small item under 10 inches on the longest side will need to be scanned at a higher ppi to achieve a minimum of 6000 pixels on the longest side. The flatbed scanner can reach a resolution of up to 2400 ppi, which is why small items work well on it. The editing software for the camera copy stand setup can also adjust ppi during processing. The highest ppi setting on the book scanner, however, is only 600, which is why the book scanner is great for scanning items that are 10 inches and above on the longest side of the page, but smaller than 17 inches. Compatibility Another consideration is the compatibility of an item with the digitization equipment. For instance, negatives or transparencies such as slides and stereo slides need a light source underneath to illuminate the image. A light box can be placed underneath the camera in the copy stand setup to act as a table and a macro lens can be used to achieve a close focus on the slide, stereo slide, or negative. Although the flatbed has transparency adaptors that allow slides to be scanned, most times the frame is obscured by the slide tray that the slide sits in. The overhead camera can capture the reflective part of the slide (which usually has writing on it) as well as the film, which is why it is the preferred method.   Efficiency The Field Book Project is a massive initiative with hundreds of field books that are on target to be digitized by the end of the year. With monthly goals to meet, efficiency is key. The camera copy stand setup is the fastest digitization equipment in the office. Setup is the longest part of the process and requires skill to adjust color accuracy and focusing, but once it is ready to go it is a lot quicker from image to image. The book scanner also uses rapid capture techniques and has a bulk edit action feature that can crop, rotate, save, close, etc, with the click of a hotkey. The flatbed scanner is the easiest to use because it has built in automation and doesn’t require much skill or setup, but it can also be the slowest. With the ppi set at 600 or above, each exposure can take a minimum of 3 to 4 minutes. A folder of 30 photographs is faster on the camera copy stand setup, but two or three photographs can save a lot more time on the flatbed because of the absence of set up time. The Field Book Project is an ongoing project that I have had the pleasure to contribute to, if only in a minor way. However, I hope my guide can serve to help other interns or participants who will continue to contribute to the efforts of creating greater accessibility for these important sources of scientific discovery to researchers. Related Resources * The Field Book Project, Biodiversity Heritage Library * The Field Book Project, Smithsonian Institution Archives * Slide Digitization Goes Stereo, The Bigger Picture, Smithsonian Institution Archives Blog Categories: Behind the ScenesBlog Tags: Field Book ProjectDigitizationheader_image: 
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Sneak Peek 8/13/2018: Smithsonian Secretary Samuel Pierpont Langley at Quantico, Virginia, on the day of the test flight of Aerodrome No. 5 on the Potomac River, May 6, 1896, by Alexander Graham Bell. Blog Categories: Collections in FocusBlog Tags: Sneak Peek
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: See Here: 8/10/2018: Blog Tags: See HereSmithsonian Institution BuildingEventBlog Categories: Collections in FocusHeader_image: EDAN Item: Fireworks at the 150th Birthday Party on the Mall
See Here: 8/10/2018
See Here: 8/10/2018
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: They say it's your birthday...We're gonna have a good time!: A Happy 172nd Birthday to the Smithsonian!  Tomorrow is the Smithsonian’s 172nd birthday!  So, let’s celebrate with cake through the ages. Previous Pause Next 1 of 8 Secretary I. Michael Heyman standing behind a birthday cake shaped like the Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle for the 150th Birthday Party on the Mall, August 10, 1996. Image # 96-15796-24A. 96th birthday party for Dr. Charles Greeley Abbot, fifth secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, on the rooftop terrace of the Museum of History and Technology, now known as the National Museum of American History, June 5, 1968. Image # OPA-1354-20A. S. Dillon Ripley cuts a cake shaped like a carousel for young visitors, April 12, 1977. Image # 77-4393-09. Donation of six of the earliest drawings of Mickey Mouse as "Steamboat Willie" (1928) to the National Museum of American History (NMAH), with Michael Eisner, CEO of Walt Disney Co., Roy Disney, nephew of Walt Disney, Roger Kennedy, NMAH Director, and Mickey Mouse, on his 60th birthday, November 16, 1988. Image # 88-18758-20. A cake in the form of the Smithsonian Institution Building is on display in the S. Dillon Ripley Center during the Birthday Party on the Mall celebration of the Smithsonian's 150th anniversary. Image # 96-25501-24. Former Secretary Dr. Charles Greeley Abbot blows out candles on a birthday cake at a Regents Dinner held in the Great Hall of the Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle, celebrating his 100th birthday, May 10, 1972. Image # 72-5080-02. Topping out ceremony for Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (HMSG), with cake cutting by Abram Lerner, Director of HMSG, and Dorothy Rosenberg, Administrative Officer for the Office of the Assistant Secretary, April 12, 1973. Image # 73-3698-02. S. Dillon Ripley cuts a cake at his 10th anniversary as Secretary of the Smithsonian party in the Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle, February 26, 1974. Image # 74-1309-4A. Related Resources * James Smithson: Founder of the Smithsonian Institution, Smithsonian Institution Archives * 17 Objects for 170 Years (Happy Birthday to us!), The Bigger Picture, Smithsonian Institution Archives * Looking Smithson’s Gift Horse in the Mouth, The Bigger Picture, Smithsonian Institution Archives Blog Categories: Smithsonian HistoryBlog Tags: Smithsonian historyJames Smithsonheader_image: 
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Wonderful Women Wednesday: Nora Atkinson: Curator of Craft Nora Atkinson, Smithsonian American Art Museum, researches the role of the handmade in modern culture and was responsible for bringing the large scale art of Burning Man to the nation's capital for the first time. #Groundbreaker Blog Categories: Smithsonian HistoryBlog Tags: Wonderful Women WednesdaySmithsonian American Art MuseumArt
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Slide Digitization Goes Stereo: Stereo slides present unique challenges for digitization. Here are a few tips for documenting your collection.   Greetings, photography friends! Today, we are diving into the digitization of stereo slides that were captured by Dr. Waldo L. Schmitt during the Smithsonian-Bredin Belgian Congo Expedition of 1955. The expedition, part of a series led by Dr. Schmitt, explored multiple sites along the Congo River to document some of the cultures, industries, plants, and animals of Central Africa. Later Smithsonian-led expeditions, similarly underwritten by Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Bredin, travelled to the Caribbean. Dr. Schmitt took copious photographs and notes during his travels, and his collection of papers ultimately came to the Smithsonian Institution Archives, where they are being digitized as part of the Field Book Project. Dr. Schmitt’s slides present unique challenges for photography because they have both reflective and transmissive elements and require careful lighting to properly capture. His stereo slides are no exception. So, what are "stereo slides"? Think View-Master. When two offset images are placed in front of both eyes, the brain stitches together a compound image with an illusory dimension of depth. That false depth provides a 3-D look. View-Masters work along the same principle, with pairs of images set in a rotating disk. In the 1950s, Kodak came out with a Stereo Camera that could capture these kinds of pictures in the field. Dr. Schmitt probably had a similar model during the Smithsonian-Bredin Belgian Congo Expedition in 1955. Once the film was developed, the images were placed into stereo slide mounts (either metal or paper) for easy viewing. The stereo slides from this particular expedition are almost all in metal mounts with surprisingly sharp edges. The slide has both reflective (the metal) and transmissive (the images) elements, which requires a dual lighting setup to image it. They are also fairly small, adding focal distance and depth-of-field challenges. Here are four tips we discovered during photography of these slides. * Use a standard slide setup - Our standard slide setup includes both copy lights and a light table. That way, we can capture both the transmissive and reflective light in one take. * Make a paper mount - The light table has soft plastic that is prone to scratches when in contact with metal. We cut black paper to fit just barely under the slide to protect the plastic from the metal. This also makes the background black, which is easier on the eyes than the white of the light table, and allows you to place the slide in the same spot every time. * Set white balance to favor transmissive over reflective light - The warm copy lights have a slightly different color temperature than the cool light table. It was hard to balance both without making either one too warm or cool. In the end, we favored the light table over the copy stand. That meant the transmissive light of the tiny photos within the slides is slightly truer than the reflected light on the metal. * Add a black cover around the lens to prevent unwanted light reflecting from the ceiling – The Archives’ photography lab has fluorescent lights in the ceiling that are lined with metal for diffusion. That metal reflects light, and if the slides have metal as well, then they reflect unwanted light a second time, distorting photography. To solve this, we put a black cover around the lens to stop light from bouncing up to the ceiling. Here is an example of the finished product. Several boxes of these are coming through the pipeline, so check back soon for new items! Have you been charged with photographing old media from the moderately distant past? Historic houses? Microfiche? Metal coins? Share your tips and tricks in the comments below. Related Resources * Stereo slides: Smithsonian-Bredin Belgian Congo Expedition, 1955, Smithsonian Institution Archives * On Expedition with Waldo Schmitt, Smithsonian Institution Archives * Field Books of Waldo Schmitt, Smithsonian Institution Archives * Stereoscopy, Wikipedia * Kodak Stereo Camera, Wikipedia Blog Categories: Behind the ScenesBlog Tags: Waldo L. SchmittPhotographyPhotographic NegativesField Book Projectheader_image: 
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Sneak Peek 8/6/2018: Lay figure group depicting Captain John Smith trading for corn with the Powhatan Indians at the Jamestown Exposition, Norfolk, Virginia, 1907. Blog Categories: Collections in FocusBlog Tags: Sneak PeekExpositions
Sneak Peek 8/6/2018
Sneak Peek 8/6/2018
siarchives.si.edu
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: Link Love: 8/3/2018: Link Love: a weekly post with links to interesting videos and stories about archival issues, technology and culture, and Washington D.C. and American history. * Classical paintings updated for the 21st century. [via Golem 13] * The Father Andrew P. Kashevaroff Alaska State Library has finished digitizing the papers of gunslinger Wyatt Earp. [via Info Docket] * What role does art play with all the pressing matters in our world? The Smithsonian's Secretary gathers a panel of artists, writers, and critics to weigh-in. [via Second Opinion]  * What it's like to do archival research as a black person. [via Chronicle of Higher Education] * The Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History is experimenting with a NASA thermal coating to see if it helps preserve natural history specimens. [via STRN] * "Naughty" and "nice" penguins at the National Aquarium of New Zealand. [via iNews]  * The Smithsonian Libraries launched an exciting new project, Museum in a Box, that brings a multimedia experience to the classroom! [via Unbound]     Blog Categories: What Gets SavedBlog Tags: Link LoveArtWeb/TechAmerican HistoryArchives
Link Love: 8/3/2018
Link Love: 8/3/2018
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Genealogy News - #Smithsonian: See Here: 8/3/2018: Blog Categories: Collections in FocusBlog Tags: See HereExhibitsNational Museum of Natural HistoryHeader_image: EDAN Item: Silurian Marine Life Diorama
See Here: 8/3/2018
See Here: 8/3/2018
siarchives.si.edu
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