Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Electronic Hoarding......

I think I might have a problem. I am afraid to delete ANYTHING off my computer. The permanency of the electronic delete scares me....I have "accidentally" deleted the contents of an entire hard drive in the past and only my backup saved me from running through the streets crying and pulling out my hair. As a result of this fear,  I have managed to amass a rather frighteningly large collection of photos. Now, if you know me at all, you might find my inability to delete rather humorous.... I SO am not a "keeper". I am the person you call when you want to get rid of stuff or organize stuff (which means getting rid of stuff, trust me). I don't collect stuff (my yarn doesn't count! My yarn is not stuff! It is a carefully stashed safety net for when the world ends... or all the sheep die... or uh, all the yarn stores burn down... or maybe all of the yarn mills in the entire world are devastated by a mill-specific earthquake phenomenon..... or there is a sudden stoppage of mail delivery.... or, ummmm, uhhhhh.... Anyway! It is NOT a collection or clutter.... It is... It is INSULATION. Yes! INSULATION that SAVES us money! Ha, Ha!! )

 Normally, my delete-a-phobia is ignorable. Digital photos do not take up physical space. No one has to worry about whether I've been crushed by a pile of photo albums or DVDs or CDs. There are no winding corridors in my house where blurry photos suddenly attack when a haphazard pile is accidentally upset. Instead, when I run out of virtual space, I buy a larger hard drive. I only have a few thousand of my favourite photos on my screensaver which is connected to my TV so that I can enjoy them. The other 30,000 photos are easily ignored. The rather enormous collection (considering that I am not a photographer, it is not my hobby or job and I have only had a digital camera since 2003)  has all come out of the closet in the past couple of weeks because we bought a new computer after Christmas. And with the new computer came all kinds of fancy new photo software, including one with facial recognition. It was during the set up of this program that I came to the realization that something had to be done..... How many blurry pictures of trees and flowers and mountains and children and strangers does one need??? How many pictures of the same pose or flower or building or mountain or butterfly or event does one need?? Why did I take so many pictures of other peoples children at our events?? Or crowd shots... how many crowd shots does one need?? You can see where the problem was and so did I. I went through all 35,000 (yes, that number is thirty five THOUSAND) pictures and deleted all of the blurry pictures, the miscellaneous group shots that were not relevant to our family, the school event pictures where Eli is in the back row and you might be able to see one of his hairs behind the kids sitting in front of him. Instead of 20 pictures of a flower, I now have one, or none (a daisy is a daisy after all. Did I really need a crappy picture of it??). It took me a week, but in the end I deleted 14,000 pictures.... Forty percent of my photo collection is now gone. The clutter is reduced and Wow, did that feel good!

The only problem is that I have since decided that I want ALL of my photos to be digital. I started out by paying London Drugs to scan my negatives, but realized rather quickly that I would save a whole bunch-o-cash if I purchased a really good scanner and did it myself. I started scanning three days ago. I have gone through, probably..... 800 pictures so far and kept only 300 of them. It's a big job, but the memories are worth it..... events that I thought I had forgotten are being relived. Here is a very small sample of the pictures I've scanned so far (Kelowna 1993-1995 or 1996)..... none have been "fixed" you're getting them exactly how they scanned.......

Were we young... or what! 

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