Taking Good Pictures and Preserving Them in Your Scrapbook

Part of the Scrapbooking For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Photographs are the predominant items in your scrapbook, so knowing how to take good photos and how to preserve them adds value and longevity to your scrapbooks. The following list offers tips for taking photos and keeping them safe:

Photography Tips Preservation Tips
Fill the frame when you’re taking photographs. Move in close on your subject. When you’re photographing people, focus on the eyes. Keep your photos and negatives out of direct sunlight in a dark, cool place. Try stashing your photos in archival storage boxes. You can put negatives in sleeve holders and store them in light-sensitive boxes, three-ring binders, or hanging file folders.
Use beautiful natural light as much as possible whenever you shoot pictures. Early morning or late afternoon light is best because it’s softer. Keep your original photos intact; you don’t want to ruin a one-of-a-kind photo! Crop copies instead of originals. You may want the backgrounds later.
For a group shot of people sitting, step on a chair above the group and have everyone look up toward the camera. This angle creates a flattering image. Use white cotton gloves when handling your photographs or wipe them with a soft cotton cloth to remove fingerprints. Through the years, acid from your fingerprints can eat away at the emulsion.
When you take a group shot of people standing, don’t bother shooting legs and feet. Focus instead on faces, and make sure you leave plenty of room around everyone’s head. Always use as little adhesive as possible for your scrapbook photos. No adhesive at all is even better; you can opt instead for photo corners or other alternatives.
Check in your viewfinder to make sure nothing’s growing out of people’s heads (like tree trunks or branches, light posts, stop signs, or wires).
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