I finished scanning the 55 year old negatives for my wife's grandmother last night around two in the morning and the DVD slideshow is roughly halfway completed. I will have it done sometime tonight, for certain.
But I can't help but feel conflicted with this "gift". I know she wants to see the photos and I know she's going to really appreciate being able to see the them again, for the first time in decades, but even good memories can be sad. Most of the photos in the slideshow are of her deceased husband and son. It's not going to be easy for Kristin's father to watch, either. Two years ago, as a raincheck for the slideshow, I printed out a half-dozen photos that I scanned and prepared a framed collage for her. She cried. A lot. But she also hung it up in the entryway of her home (if memory serves). But a single framed photo can be put aside; you can turn away from it, or turn it over.
Kristin thinks we may need to watch the slideshow with her in 5-minute segments, just to avoid her getting too emotional. I don't think that's even going to help. I never met her late husband or the man who would have been my wife's uncle, but even I can't help but feel sad looking at these photos.
How we're going to get through a fully twenty-five minute slideshow is beyond me.
But I am really proud of how it's coming out. I probably have over 100 hours invested in scanning and touching-up the photos and it's great to finally be working on the slideshow. I complete the Costa Rica one for my friends last week right before the power went out and I watch it every day. Both because of the memories, and also because I can't help but admire my handiwork. The family slideshow is a bit tougher because I wasn't there for the background stories and know the exact dates of everything so trying to put it together in a sensical (or at the least chronological) order is much harder. Nor can I do much in the way of captions. This being the case, I decided to just slow it down, allow more time per slide, and let the photos and the memories speak for themselves. With just a touch of instrumental piano playing in the background...