Friday, March 31, 2017

At Long Last

There were several reasons I volunteered to scan my parent's slides. The first reason is that I wanted to see some of them, especially some of the older ones when I was a kid. A leaky roof in a storage building destroyed many of my childhood photos many years ago and I wanted some to pass onto my kids. Another reason is the genealogist inside me wanted to preserve these slides for future generations. Just sitting in slide trays slowly degrading with time wasn't going to do that. The final reason, and perhaps the biggest reason is that I wanted this single photo.

I've posted a version of this photo on this blog before but it was from a camera phone picture of a framed and enlarged picture that hangs on the wall above where Ted used to sleep. It is really the only reminder we have of Ted's existence in our lives other than looking through the old slides which has been all but impossible after the projector went belly up. It has been a joy scanning through these old slides and finding old pictures of Ted. However, when I think of him, this is the picture that has always come to mind.

After tens of thousands of slides scanned over the last half dozen years (I've lost count), I had concluded that I was out of luck. Since it had obviously been developed into a picture that hangs on the wall of my parent's place, I figured it had been one of the hundreds of pictures in a shoe box that never got put back in the trays. I had scanned the entire shoe box of loose slides several years back and it hadn't been in there. I had written it off as lost due to misplacement and they only way I would get a decent print was to remove the one from my parent's home and scan it.

As I started the second to last box of slides, it was labeled the year 1991 so I didn't have much hope that this picture would be in there. I was guessing from the truck that is featured in here, it was taken in the late 80's. But seven slides in this popped up on the screen and brought a huge smile to my face. I guess my dad still had this old truck in 1991 and I hadn't remembered.

I'm not sure what led up to this picture but judging from the others around it, the photo was taken in late fall during pumpkin harvest. Somehow a pumpkin was placed in the truck for a reason I no longer remember and Ted tiring of watching us pick pumpkins had crawled in there to sleep in the warmth of the sunlight. This was our chore truck and was an old Dodge pickup with four wheel drive that we used hard. The blue thing Ted is laying on is an old tarp and not the seat.

I scanned the slide at really high resolution and now have it saved on my hard drive for future use. I'm not sure what I will do with it yet but I'm thinking about getting a print made for somewhere appropriate in my house. Perhaps I will hang it in my office where I can see it daily as a reminder of Ted's existence and what he meant to me. Ted died of failing internal organs just a year and a half after this picture was taken.


Kelly said...

I love it! Even without any of the nostalgia that makes it special to you, I think it's wonderful on its content and composition alone. I can see why you're thrilled to have it again.

Ed said...

Kelly - I find myself staring at that photo from time to time and strolling through past adventures.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

Oh, what a great photo and a great find! Ted looks like a good guy, and those good dogs always have a special place in our hearts. I'm glad you found it, especially after such a hunt!
Now, tell me, if you will, how are you getting the images off the slides? My family also had slides galore and I've got them and I think even the slide projector in my garage. You've kind of inspired me to go through them, but I am curious the way to go about that, especially if the projector doesn't work.

Ed said...

Pumpkin Delight - I bought a flat bed scanner that came with an attachment and light in the lid for scanning slides and negatives. It is quite reasonable to buy one, however the drawback is that you can only do in my case, four slides at a time. They make dedicated slide scanners that can do them one at a time automatically but they are a lot more expensive. I started off just scanning a batch or two at a time whenever I thought about it down on the computer in the office. I thought it would take me only a year or two to complete. It ended up taking me ten years!