Ask the Photo Detective: Photocopying Pictures
In this regular installment on my blog, I’ll answer questions submitted by visitors to my website. Topics include photo identification, preservation, picture history and photo sharing.
Barbara asked: Does photocopying recent photographs damage the pictures? Is there an alternative for our library patrons who want to copy materials from our small collection?
Photocopying exposes all types of images to intense light, heat, and chemicals. A single photocopy shouldn’t cause noticeable damage. I would not advise repeat copying of any image. There is also the stress of repeatedly handling the picture for duplication.
A better solution is to scan the images and create a database using a simple program like Picasa, then letting patrons select the photographs they want to print.