One of the major and final roles of my co-op is the sorting, organizing, and uploading of all photos, letters, and newspapers taken and compiled throughout the summer. That’s a lot of files… 3,034 files to be exact.
Most of these files won’t be uploaded. A lot of them were taken at the Royal BC Museum and BC Archives mainly for personal research items. In the early weeks, when I still wasn’t too sure what I was supposed to be doing, I spent a lot of time at the archives photographing large collections of letters and reports. I mainly used these for the pages I wrote in the website’s general history sections (Religion, Economy, Social Organizations). The images are now sitting on my external hard drive and will just sit there forever…
The Crease letters were the exception, I will be uploading many of those to the website and they were not used for background research. With other photographs discovered among the files, these images that I took turned out to be unusable. The RBCM wants to use their own, high quality images in any digital publications. This makes sense: they want to make sure their brand is well represented, properly cited, and at the best quality available. But it is quite frustrating because after taking so many photos I had to return and search for all the photos again just so the Archive staff could scan them themselves and charge us a lot of money. Luckily the Crease letters were allowed to be put online because we need them in compiled PDFs.
Uploading takes a long time. I’ve been uploading for about six weeks, with a week and a half break for the start of school and some computer problems I’ve been having. I’ve been very lucky to be able to work in the Humanities Computing and Media Centre with their nice two-screen computers to be able to switch back and forth between the website and the images. I have to add a title, a short description, some computer code, the date, the page (for newspapers), the collection, and tags for searching. Thank goodness my contract’s been extended through September!