Digitization & Collections Projects
(The longtime mantra: "Talk is cheap. See the work." To see the work,
scroll down to links to varied collections projects.)
In the museum and archives world, the rush is on to digitize, and everyone is stressed about how they can get into the act. Run to the office store and buy a scanner? Take that point-and-shoot digital camera out of your back pocket and start snapping everything in the collection? Fortunately the stress has been moderated recently thanks to informative sessions at professional conferences. Thankfully the field has arrived at some "best practice" standards for digitizing collections.
R.W. Bacon has been involved with digital imaging in the graphic design field for over 25 years, and has successfully guided a commercial printing firm and its designers through the confusing maze of imaging technology. However, achieving great scans for books, magazines, and advertisements is a world removed from scanning photos or documents for archival purposes. In an effort to stay up-to-date with "best practices" in the field, in 2008 Bacon attended the three-day seminar, "Digitizing Historical Collections," presented by the Collaborative Digitization Project in conjunction with the American Association for State and Local History. This seminar covered not only the technical specifications of scanning and digital photography, but also project management and compilation of metadata.
In 2008 R.W. Bacon was engaged in a start-up collections care and digitization project, which, in retrospect, amounted to an ideal case study of how such an undertaking can work --- with proper training and leadership --- using a team of non-professional volunteers. Read about the project in the sidebar at the right.
R.W. Bacon brings to your digitization project the knowledge of a graphic arts imaging professional and the background, training, and sensitivity of a museum professional and cultural heritage preservation specialist.
But talk is cheap! Learn about relevant collections projects by clicking on the links below. Read about the project detailed in the sidebar at the right. If the scope of that project sounds like the situation facing your museum, then don't hesitate to call or e-mail with any questions. I would be happy to meet with you to discuss your project. --- R.W. Bacon
Talk is cheap. See the work ...
... on collections projects.
- NEMA Presentation: "Rumble in the Jumble:
Coordinating a Volunteer Collections Project" (2014)
The educational session, "Rumble in the Jumble: Coordinating a Volunteer Collections Project," was presented at the 2014 New England Museum Association (NEMA) Conference in Boston, Mass.
- Collections Project: International Circus Hall of Fame & Museum (2013)
In July 2013 a "collections rescue team" converged from distant points at the International Circus Hall of Fame & Museum in Peru, Indiana, to impose some museum-standard order and conservation practices to the newly-acquired George Hubler Collection. The project was a museum/history outreach initiative of the Circus Historical Society.
- Digital Photo Restoration
Before-and-after example of sensitive digital restoration of a damaged 1890s photo. (N.B.: This approach is for aesthetics and presentation only, and is not appropriate for archival or historical records preservation.)
For those interested in the finer points
of digitization & collections ...
- Connecting to Collections
This guide to online resources provided by the Institute of Museum & Library Services is a companion to the IMLS "Connecting to Collections Bookshelf."
- Northern States Conservation Center
Bookmark this web site for quick access to hundreds of valuable collections-care tips.
- North East Document Conservation Center
The NEDCC web site is widely known for its compendious collection of online resources on the care of paper documents, photograps, and more.
- New England Archivists
The New England Archivists web site features dozens of links to valuable conservation and management resources.
- Collaborative Digitization Programs
This site includes links to collaborative digitization programs throughout the U.S., plus links to many sites with comprehensive information about best practices in cultural heritage digitization projects.