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Print Photos from Old Negatives | Canvas Press

by Eric Von Lehmden | February 20, 2012

Let's reminisce for a little while...shall we. Remember the days when cameras actually took pictures with a thing called 'Film'? Ahhh yes, good old film. Those were the days. The days when film would stay in your camera for months with 12 shots left and you had no idea what was even on that roll of film. Do you remember the anticipation and excitement you felt when you went to the photo lab at the grocery store to pick up the photos from your vacation...mixed with some random photos of the family dog? You may even have a couple of drawers (or shoeboxes) full of photos and film negatives. It is nice to have that family history safely vaulted away, but there are also some hidden gems in those photography archives. There may come a day when you are walking down memory lane, looking at those old photos and you decide you would like to make a few of them into canvas prints or even printed onto photo paper. The problem is finding a local photo lab that can help you out. Most 1 hour photo labs have closed...so how do you transform your film into a photo on canvas in this digital age? You have several options. Let's take a look.

1. You could buy a scanner. Preferably one that allows you to scan both regular photos and film negatives. I would suggest you make your scan from your negative. There is a little more technical work that goes into it but you will end up with a scan that is richer with detail. Making a scan of a photo is ok, but it is also like making a copy of a copy. There is the possibility of losing a little detail in the photo. Regular scanners are pretty reasonably priced, but scanners that can also scan photo negatives and cost around $100 to over $1000. If you do buy a scanner you need to scan your negative or photo at the highest resolution possible. This could create a large file. Once you scan your negative you will need to open it in Photoshop and Invert the image (since a negative is an inverted image already). Then you can size the photo to the size you would like your final photo canvas or photo paper print to be.

Plustek OpticFilm scanner

2. You can send your negatives to a professional lab to be scanned. Their rates could range from $20 to $100 for a high resolution scan. Then they will send you a cd of your image and you can process the image in Photoshop and size it however you would like before you make your print from it.

3. What if you don't want to pay for a scanner or you don't have Photoshop to edit the photo with after it has been scanned? Well, just send it to us. We will do it for FREE. When you order a canvas print or a print on photo paper we will gladly print photos from a scan of your old digital negative and do the sizing and processing on it at no cost to you. Plus, if you need that copy, we would be more than happy to include that scanned photo or negative on a cd for you to keep. Be sure to ask us to include that for you.

Here at Canvas Press, we know how much those memories and your family history means to you. So the next time you are looking through all those old family photos and beautiful kodachrome negatives...remember we can help you transform those into amazing pictures on canvas for the perfect gift or for a one of a kind wall collage in your own house. Give us a call and Caroline or myself (Eric) will take care of you.

film negatives, film scanner, 35mm, film, printing from film, print to canvas

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Tips-n-Tricks #94

Scary movies are best watched alone...in the dark...preferably while baby sitting or house sitting. I'm just sayin' if you want the full effect that will probably do it.

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