so today . . . i am trying to wrestle my ocd tendencies into submission. but they are strong and somewhat resistant...
first of all, let's be clear--i have never been diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder. i'm pretty sure if i were tested for it, medical professionals would laugh me out of their offices. but i do have some tendencies that scream OCD!!! probably a more accurate description of my idiosyncrasies would be "frustrated perfectionist." i want things to be perfect. i need things to be perfect. yet, i know that things will never be perfect--hence, the "frustrated" part--so i don't even want to try.
well, that is not exactly true. sometimes i try. sometimes i look at a project and think, "i can do this. it may take me months and months, but i can do it." my closet is a perfect example of this. i clean it out. i organize it. i catalog it. i list everything in it. i organize the list. then i clean it out again. reorganize it. update the list. go shopping. update the list. clean it out again. and so on. and so on.
this is why it took me over a year to organize my digital music files just the way i wanted them. (i have a lot of music.)
i recently decided that it would be a good idea to digitize all my old negatives. when diandra was born, we decided that every photo we took of her was priceless and irreplaceable. so i immediately became worried that there would be a fire or a flood which would destroy both my photos and the negatives. (i'm not paranoid either. really.) i needed insurance . . . and it came in the form of velveeta cheese boxes and my mother.
the only solution i could see to save my precious photos from natural disasters (or unnatural ones) was to keep the negatives in a different location than the photos. since i had the photos, i decided my mother should have the negatives. so i put the negatives in velveeta cheese boxes (which fit them perfectly,) and gave them to my mom to keep at her house. my mom also had a set of photos--we always printed doubles--but for some reason i always thought her house was safer from fire or flood than mine. so i entrusted the precious negatives to her...
then we entered the digital age. and the priceless photos yellowed, and the negatives lay hidden in the dark at my mom's house. and i developed this need to digitize them. so i decided to scan the strips of 35mm film into my computer. but it wasn't as simple as it sounds...
i am using my beloved canon photo printer/copier/scanner which i have had for a few years. it is specially designed to scan negatives, which is one of the reasons i bought this particular model. but now that i am ready to scan my negatives, i can't find the manual. no problem, i thought. i will just go online and download the manual. which i did. and it was not helpful at all, because it kept saying, "refer to the manual that came with your printer for specific instructions." yes, that would have been great advice if i could find the manual that came with my printer. but i can't. which is why i downloaded one. i could see a vicious catch 22 developing . . . so i decided manuals were highly overrated. i would just figure it out for myself. how hard could it be?!?!?!
i lifted the lid and saw some irregularities in the plastic. ok, let's just take this thing apart, i thought. which was probably a good first step, because i found the part that should hold each piece of film, but i couldn't figure out how to snap it back into the lid. i turned it. i flipped it. it HAD to go where the light strip was, but i could not figure out how to make it stay there. i laid it on the glass while i poked around some more. which is how i discovered it would snap into place on the glass and then the light strip would lower onto it. it was a clever design, but not exactly intuitive--at least not for me!
i started scanning in the negatives. i scanned several rolls of film and was delighted to see my baby's precious face emerging. and then i went to bed.
the next day when i started scanning photos, i realized that for some reason, many of the photos were taken from quite a distance away. what if i wanted to crop one? what if i wanted to print an 8x10 of one? i checked the resolution and realized that it was not going to be enough. so, you know what i had to do? i had to re-scan all those negatives at a higher resolution! yes, i said re-scan. because it wasn't going to be good enough to just do all the rest at the higher resolution--i had to do them ALL!
you see?!?!? ocd tendencies. because really, am i ever going to do anything with those old photos? probably not--they aren't that good. but then i look at that smiling baby face, and realize that i want the best resolution i can get.i fear that i am going to be working on these photos for a long, long time. because i still haven't figured out how i am going to scan the 110mm film. and then once i get them all into the computer, i have a date with photoshop. there are imperfections that need to be erased, deterioration that needs to be restored, and colors that need to be corrected.
i'm going to be working on these until i die . . .