I have a photo that I took almost 25 years ago that means a lot to me. It was the first photo that I had published in something other than a high school yearbook. I had several copies of it enlarged and framed for people (ok, mainly relatives — but at the time it was cool that anyone would want one of my photos enlarged to 24×36 and framed). It was a photo I was extremely proud of and still enjoy looking at today.
As digital technology has evolved, I have wanted to have that image digitized and even sent it out to have scanned a few years ago. What I got back was a dirty negative (spots on it and extremely filthy) and a terrible scan. I decided I was going to have to pay a hefty price to get a high quality scan made of the negative. It was obvious that a local shop couldn’t do the job.
I had forgotten about the image until last week. My mother-in-law, who owns one of the enlargements, called me up and reminded me that her copy was damaged from 20+ years of almost direct sunlight. I had noticed the gradual damage over the years but knew I didn’t have a good, digital image to create a replacement and the negative was in bad shape. As I thought about the situation I was in, I was reminded that the local shop I had used several years ago had gone out of business and there was a new store in its place.
The Imaging Depot took over the building of the previous photo store and I happen to know one of the owners. I had promised this friend that I would give them a shot at proving that they were not the same as the previous store and could do professional work. I had taken him up on that offer a few weeks before with some enlargements that I needed for a very important project. I was not disappointed. I decided I would return with this project to see what they could do for me.
I took my dirty negative into the store and ordered a high resolution film scan. I explained that the negative had been handled poorly in the past and needed to be cleaned before the scan. I don’t have any of my film equipment anymore, so I trusted the cleaning to the professionals. The best part is that the cost was extremely reasonable compared to what I paid previously and what others charge for the same service, so it wasn’t a huge gamble unless my negative became damaged beyond use.
Because of my requests, the image was sent out to the main store in Ogden to have the work done. I waited a week and got the phone call that the order was ready to be picked up. I was excited but hesitant at the same time based on my prior experience with this particular image. I picked up the order and rushed home to find out what I had on that new CD.
I opened the package and examined the negative. It was cleaned and beautiful. It was impossible to see that there had been spots and dirt on the negative. The next step was to download the images to the computer and find out how they looked.
I was extremely pleased with the scans. I had three negatives scanned and all three looked great. They had done a fabulous job on the scans. I was beyond excited for what I had available to me now for processing. I now have something that I have never had with this image — I have a complete image. You see, what no one else has known before today is that the image printed in the book and hanging on walls was not the image I had in my mind 25 years ago. The image that everyone has seen is slightly more than half of the image I had in my mind.
The image in my mind was a panoramic image. I shot two images that day and had envisioned them together as a panorama of the scene. I would never think twice about putting those images together today, with the tools I have available now, but these photos were taken many years ago and on film. They had never been put together and made into a single image — ever. That is until today.
My final image is not complete, there are still some minor dust spots that need correcting, but it is getting very close. How happy have I been with The Imaging Depot, happy enough that I am now deciding how large my Canvas Gallery Wrap will be of my new panorama. I would highly recommend their services. Will they make mistakes or have issues with orders? Sure they will, but what shop won’t. The bottom line is that they are ultimately concerned about the customer and making it right if there is a problem. It is refreshing to be treated as a customer again and not as a dollar sign coming through the door.