Saturday, December 11, 2010
Archive Raiders: Photographing Library and Archive Materials
Konrad M. Lawson has authored a guest post over at ProfHacker in which he outlines his solution to this problem. With just a few relatively inexpensive components he bought on Amazon, he has come up with a clever set-up that is very portable and effective. It is important to note, as some of the comments on his post have, that archives and libraries often have explicit rules about what kinds of equipment may or may not be used. These policies are normally in place to protect the materials, and it's vital to respect their well-being for future users. Lawson describes the practice employed by some of using plexiglass to hold the pages of books flat. He does not mention it, but this is damaging to rare materials and should be avoided. Lawson has found a better solution. He operates a wired camera remote with his foot, leaving his hands free to hold the pages flat.
Image: Jeff Tabaco, Notes, 2006. Available from Flickr under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic license.