To this day many professionals think that film photography – also known as traditional photography – is the only true form of capturing moments. However, not only is this harder to share physical photos with others, but without an album available it isn’t easy to store them either. Not to mention that if a photo is damaged and there are no copies of it, that picture is gone for good.
While many people have realized that digitization can save old photographs from being destroyed, those photos usually end up sharing the same fate as their contemporary counterparts: namely, being forgotten in a folder hidden away on the computer. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. In fact, by organizing scanned photos into a photo book in much the same way our older relatives did when placing physical photographs into those good old photo albums, those older memories can finally be given the dignity they always deserved.
Photo Digitization: The Epitome of DIY
Unless you need a huge number of old photos to be digitized – in which case it’s still best to turn to specialist film developing and digitization services – scanning photos is something that can be done in the comfort of your home. Most modern scanners or 3-in-1 printers all have a photo scanning mode with which a photograph can be digitized in such a way that it should look as close to the original copy as possible.
However, if there is no access to a scanner, the camera of a smartphone will suffice provided the photo of the old picture is captured in an evenly-lit room. Alternatively, there is the option to use a dedicated photo scanning app like Google’s PhotoScan, which automatically enhances digitized photos.
It’s worth adding, though, that regardless of the preferred method, none of them will provide perfect results. Granted, scanned photos can be left as they are, but if they are intended to be featured in a photo book, basic enhancement is necessary. Thankfully, more customizable photo book builders are all equipped with various photo enhancement options – from cropping and rotating to applying filters – meaning that the pictures can be inserted into the would-be book and tweaked and improved at the same time. But even if photo enhancement features are missing from the builder itself, there are simple-to-use, dedicated photo editing tools available that can be used for use alterations. Just import the edited photos into the photo book once the necessary enhancements are done.
Nosedive Into Nostalgia
Although more and more people are dropping the camera in favor of smartphones, there is one thing most of us have in common: we just can’t get enough of all things retro. This is best seen by the many black and white or sepia photos that people share online. These well-known effects can make photos appear older, but the problem is that they still don’t feel authentic enough. However, this is something that can actually be helped.
Artificial Photo Aging
Thankfully, most photo editing apps can effectively recreate the appearance of a vintage photo. In fact, with most software it’s just a case of adding a vintage photo texture overlay to your picture and applying a black and white or sepia filter, after which the results will speak for themselves. These tweaks are usually enough, but if you want you can further ‘damage’ the photo by increasing the noise, adjusting attributes like brightness and contrast, and applying a vignette.
Recreating the Photo Album Look
One of the best things about photo book builders is that they are capable of realizing the photo book exactly as it has been envisioned – and retro-style photo books aren’t an exception to that either. However, there are a few things to keep in mind to achieve the most nostalgic effect possible:
- Opt for a plain black theme as it’s both stylish and extremely retro. If it isn’t available, the simplest, white theme is a perfect replacement.
- Limit the number of photos per page to one or two, but try to refrain yourself from creating full-page spreads.
- Order the photo book with a rectangular shape and a more refined cover, preferably leather for that truly classic look.
- Use layflat pages to have the necessary rigidity and photo album feel. If this option isn’t available, just order the photo book with thicker, matte pages.
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