SCAN VAN! I've blogged about my ScrapMobile fantasy It wasn't a fantasy for at least one entreprenuerial scrapper. They actually did it and then tried at least twice to sell the fully outfitted van on eBay. I don't know if they actually were able to eventually sell it or not.
My new Scan Van fantasy came while I was reading the latest edition of PMA magazine (which is GREAT if you're interested in the photo industry - I always find great information in it!) about one woman's scanning road-trip. She outfitted a VW van borrowed from her grandmother with all the equipment to digitize photos, slides and eventually film. She criss-crossed the country through 44 states scanning for 70 clients - friends, family, acquaintences and others. She said she felt "called" to do it (and therefore didn't put on her capitalist hat - it was more service than business). One thing I found interesting was that she said most of her customers were over 35. As I have previously talked about before, scanning things like slides just makes MORE photos to scrap! And, most people who have a lot of slides to be scanned are over 35 years of age. And, the largest pool of scrappers and potential scrappers are women over 35!
After reading the article, I googled around and found that Kodak has a Scan Van and at least one other enterprising person has set one up in a motor home.
What a great idea! Too bad gas just hit $4 a gallon...
Along a similar vein, Heritage Makers just distributed a bunch of THESE to various regions of the country for their consultants to sign up for. They are now holding scanning parties where they digitize customer photos for a price. It's a great idea providing they can keep the scanners in good working order as they travel from consultant to consultant. That's the tricky part with electronics - if they get tossed around too much, they get angry. And, I'd hate to have a bunch of customers in front of me with stacks of photos and a broken scanner.
I predict that digitizing images will become the next hot new trend. People are increasingly aware of the fact that their images need to be permanently preserved or that their slides are useless and back-up services like Carbonite are getting cheaper.