I recently got custody of our historical family photos. In order to make them useful and viewable to as many as possible, and avoid the risk of losing them in a fire or flood, I have started to make digital copies of them.
You can use your ordinary camera app to do it, but I decided on using a specialized app instead. The main reason is that it can automatically crop and skew photos. That saves a lot of time. It is also quite easy to add Exif titles to images. I think that is a good way to tag photos with important facts like who’s in it and when and where it was taken.
The app I use is called Unfade. There are two versions of it. One free and a pro version with extra features. Pro costs about 8 USD.
Using Unfade is very easy. You just open the camera view and point it at a photo. It finds the photo, adjusts focus, snaps and crops, and then waits for you to point it at the next one.
The most important thing for getting a good result is to find the right lighting. If you have a big window facing in a direction where there is no sun, use that. You want to avoid sharp shadows. If the photos are glossy make sure that the phone isn’t mirrored in them. Move the phone around until you get a good shot without reflections.
Do you have any advice for digitizing photos?
This article was first published at Mobile Photography.