Day 80, slides, tour

Monday, 2/18/2019

I started the day with a run, the first in a week, and felt pretty good for it. This is President’s day, a Monday holiday, and the Museum will be open — normally it is closed Mondays. I had signed up for the 2pm tour, and as of the morning, nobody else had, so I supposed I might have to deal with a big crowd as I did on Saturday. However the desk crew said attendance had been light so far; and just after I got there, Steve showed up as well. I started my tour at 1:59 with the 20-odd people who were ready, and Steve stayed back to pick up stragglers.

I must not have been as interesting as usual (though I didn’t do anything different) because half the 20 had dropped off by the end — although the ten remaining seemed really interested. Then I went back to sit in on the last stop of Steve’s tour. He had a group of a dozen who’d showed up after 2pm. I liked how he finished his tour, more formally and clearly than I do. I think I’ll shadow his tour sometime and see what else he does differently.

Back home I reviewed a couple more groups of slides. I should be able to wrap that review task up this weekend, and then it will be on to scanning and keywording the 150-odd slides I’ll have set aside by then. Keywording is adding keywords to the metadata  of  each image file so that I can do a search and turn up, for example, all the slides that relate to “Marian” or to “bridge” or “vehicle” or “London”. Or Boolean combinations of those, “Marian AND London” etc. This is an absolutely essential step in managing a collection of digital images. Without it, you just have a mass of hundreds (thousands?) of images and the only way to find anything is to scroll through a sea of thumbnails trying to spot what you want. (Which is exactly what I observed Jean doing yesterday when she was looking for a shot she wanted to show me.)

Anyway, scanning slides involves (1) the actual scan, which deposits the image as a file; (2) looking at it in Photoshop, possibly cropping, straightening, or adjusting color; (3) storing it in its appropriate folder (the folder for its group) with a correct filename (like  g201p043 Mt Shasta from I5); (4) going over a group in Adobe Bridge or Lightroom and adding the keywords; (5) uploading the group to our online collection. Then it’s accessible and searchable. Here for example is the result of searching the collection for “Ireland Marian”.

And when that’s all done, hopefully before the end of March, there will be a day when all eleven boxes of slides get dumped into the black garbage can.

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