Sunday, February 14, 2010

Scanning Negatives

For the last several days I've been scanning decades-old film negatives to my computer using my all-in-one printer. Most of these photos are from my childhood in the 1950s and 1960s. The black and white images have turned out pretty well using the tools available on the computer from the printer. The color images are a bit more difficult as the film has aged, and color was a relatively new element and not very stable, or so it seems. One of the most frustrating issues is that the scanner will only accommodate 35mm negatives or 35 mm slide film taken out of the cardboard or plastic frames. Most of the film I want to scan is approximately 4.1 cm x 6.5 cm or 5.7 cm squared. I don't know yet how I'll get those scanned. I searched some on the internet to see if special film scanners for those sizes were available but didn't find much. I may have to check with photographic suppliers....and that may be prohibitive to the budget!

Aside from the technical issues, I've enjoyed viewing these old photos which bring back the childhood memories of Christmases, life on the ranch, siblings and other family, and the many houses we lived in during those years.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


My childhood was largely spent on a ranch. We didn't own it but my father worked on it. At that time the ranch was around 2000 acres of beautiful woodlands, hills, creeks and fresh air. While we lived in several houses near the ranch and even in town during those years, there was one house we lived in the longest for about five or six years. That place is home, in my heart. It remains only as a memory in my mind and in photos as it burned down in the late 1970s or early 1980s. I still visit the ranch owner who, now retired, lives at the ranch rather than in the big city. And it's still 'home'. And I miss it. And I'm glad I can go visit.

We had horses and cattle on the ranch, with round ups in the late fall, early winter. It was always wet and cold, but was a time for which I looked towards with pleasure. I loved the horses and riding. I think I must have also read every book and story in our school's library, and the town library, that had anything to do with horses or cowboy-western events. Many of them I read more than once. I watched shows like Fury, My Friend Flicka, Sky King, Zorro, The Lone Ranger, The Cisco Kid, Roy Rogers & Dale Evans. Perhaps my favorite stories were the Black Stallion series, and it was so thrilling to have a movie made from them. I miss horses here. I miss having them to ride, to care for, even to seeing them, for while there are horses in areas near here, there aren't any on my normal paths around town and other outings. It's been several years since I've ridden even a stable-rental horse.

I hope there are horses in heaven, or at least on the new earth, but I wonder if it would be the same. This meloncholy feeling for certain things of the past will no longer exist. There will be no more tears, so I won't cry over long-lost horses, cats, dogs that were so important as a child and since. I won't tear up when I watch a movie of a horse story like Flicka or The Black Stallion. But still, I hope there are horses.
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