Seeing the flowers and trees begin to bloom outside reminds me of last year's sunny weather and those fun summer days spent outdoors. Of course, to glance at a few photos of those days simply means going through my digital camera or folders in my computer. But what about the photos from DECADES ago, before the digital era existed? For most of us, those photographs are probably stored in albums because we don't know where else to put them. But did you know the life span of your pictures could be being cut short? Take a look at the following storage tips in order to keep your photos safe for the next generation:
• Paper matters! Photo albums can actually destroy your photos due to the acidity level in paper. Over time, the contact between the acid on the photo will erase the lines and color right off the picture. Replace the album with one that has a 6.0 or higher acidity which will protect photo vibrancy from turning strange colors.
• Pens are great to use for dating photos on the back of a picture, just make sure it is acid-free. The acid in pen ink will literally destroy your photo!
• Plastic makes perfect! Photos that have remained inside plastic sleeves can also erode from a gas emitted from the plastic. This is also another reason photos turn yellow. Protect the state of the colors by once again replacing the album with one that is "lignin-free".
• Above all, dry air will significantly help protect the state of your pictures. Humidity can erode pictures and cause paper to mildew.
Simply being watchful over where and how you store old photographs can help assure the stories from the past reach the next generation in a visual way. Buying new albums or paper isn't expensive…it's priceless!