I continue to pick at the process of scanning all of my grandfather’s 8mm films.

It’s been slow going, mostly because there are so many of them. I’m fortunate to have a scanner that scans at 1:1 speed, but it’s still 10-30 minutes for the scan, 10 minutes to render, and 10 minutes to copy the file over wifi up to my Mac. Then I have to edit out any unnecessary leaders and convert the file to a smaller format. Once finished, I write the movie’s information in a notebook. In many cases, I also upload the file to YouTube so family members have access.

Recording a film’s metadata is tedious, but at least I have metadata! My grandpa took care to make notes in each film’s canister. Things like year, subject, and sometimes detailed index of the reel’s contents.

80 years later, I still know what’s on each reel and who some of the people in the movie are.

The moral is, record metadata for you images and movies.