Scan Negatives

Negatives come in ALL kinds of sizes. Emulsion have been coated on many different surfaces. The one’s I’ve seen are celulose, tin,, and glass. Very common are black & white negatives, and from the 1970s on color negatives. Negatives require that the scanner be able to project light down through the negative where the scanner bed records the image. It is not impossible but I find it problematic to look at negatives and even begin to determine the people I know in the reversed image. My recommendation is to scan them all and review them digitally on a computer screen to determine how to proceed with them.

Scan Photos of Any Size

There are some exceptionally large photographs out there. None of these large format images will fit on a normal scanner. I have 12 x 17 inch scanner and most of the large format images will not physically sit on a 12 x 17 scanner and be scanned in one pass. The large format photographs and art work can be scanned however in multiple passes. The most scans I’ve completed to capture the entire image was eight. (I don’t remember how many scans it took for some very large blue prints I scanned for a client!)  The multiple scans are digitally reassembled and we end up with a perfect digital copy of the original. It can be printed at the same size as the original or smaller/larger.


I’ve scanned lots of birth certificates, wedding certificates, graduation certificates, confirmation certificates, and even one ID tag. Modern certificates  are not very visually interesting, but the documents from the late 19th and early 20th centuries were filled in by hand on printed certificates that were produced in color and usually very ornate. 

If your purpose is to preserve the image, and potentially to share it digitally then scanning is really all you need to accomplish. However, the goal of most clients is to restore the certificate. Many of the certificates have lived rough lives rolled up in the back of drawers. The are often dried out and cracked. Many are torn, and most are faded.


I handle large format flat artwork in a similar fashion as I do with large format photographs. Art work is scanned in segments, and reassembled digitally. Prints may be made the same size as the original or enlarged or reduced.