Now What? Shifty Slides

By Maureen A. Taylor Premium

Q. I have some 35 mm slides that were popular some years ago. Some of them have pictures of aunts, uncles, etc., who have passed away. I want to put them on my computer. I have PhotoSuite, but I am unable to get the red tones out. The color on these pictures has turned red. What program should I use? What is the best method to save these slides?

A. Color shifting in color slides is very common. In order to slow down the process, store color photographic materials such as prints and slides in a dark, cool place that’s not subject to fluctuations in temperature and humidity. Large archives such as the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston actually store their color materials in refrigerated vaults. To learn more about the stability of color slides and prints, consult The Permanence and Care of Color Photographs: Tradition and Digital Color Prints, Color Negatives, Slides, and Motion Pictures by Henry Wilhelm and Carol Brower (Preservation Publishing Co.).

According to the makers of PhotoSuite (Roxio), you can eliminate all of the red using the color-adjust feature, but the image will not look as it did when originally taken. It is possible to enhance certain features in the slide and even decrease the amount of red using the editing tools, but there may be a loss of quality. In the prepare mode, select Touch-up and then Touch-up Filters. From there, you can select color adjustments and control the red, green and blue levels. You can learn more about PhotoSuite and purchase it at <>.

Before buying any photo-editing software, read reviews such as the one featured on ZDNet <>, and ask technical questions via company Web sites. Photo-editing software programs are available in a wide range of prices, depending on the features you need.

From the February 2003 issue of Family Tree Magazine.