Thursday, June 01, 2006

Recovering from Archive Fever

Part I of History Carnival #32 is up a Aqueduct. It reveals a strange bit of synchronicity: both Evan Roberts and I, on the same day, posted about using digital photography in archival research. Evan's post is more appropriate for the individual researcher (and hopefully he would appreciate the ability to make archival images public), noting what cameras and features are most useful. Cheap (less than $400) can be good -- an expensive camera is not necessarily best for the kind of photography any historian will want to do in the archive, and a more professional digital camera would be cumbersome. One thing I would add: rather than using the black and white mode without flash (because most archives require that pictures are taken with only ambient light), use the camera's white balance feature. Sometimes it can reproduce text more clearly, especially on discolored paper.

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