Family photographs often top the salvage priority list, and luckily, they can often be saved with a bit of work. If the photograph is clean, you can simply air dry, lay on towels flat to dry. If the photograph itself is dirty, dip it in a container of clean water to remove debris, gently rubbing it with a soft paint brush under the water. Try to remove any framed photographs from within their frames—it is important to try and keep photographs from drying onto glass.
For photographs in albums: move the entire album through a bin of clean water in one motion. Once the albums are cleaned, you can carefully use a pair of scissors to remove the individual photographs from the album and then very carefully separate the photograph from the plastic covering.
It’s very important to let them dry, this can be a challenge if the humidity is high. one option is to place photos in a freezer (keep away from air circulating that may have mold spores.) To freeze the objects, wrap them in wax paper—photographs should be separated with the wax or parchment paper—and place into freezer bags.
Prioritize photos, wedding, baby pictures and ancestor’s photography may be at the top of your list. Your photos are your memories…try to preserve them as best as you can.
I do digital photo restoration, and will give flood victims a huge discount.
A lady I did work for (after Katrina) told me I’m so glad you were able to help me with these
few pictures, I wish we hadn’t thrown all the other ones away.
DO NOT THROWAWAY ANY PHOTOS!
Note: Some of the samples shown did NOT fall into the category of photo restoration
because I had to recreate and draw in areas that were completely missing.