How can I save family pictures that are stuck to the glass in picture frames. We evacuated for the hurricane and for 6 weeks our home was without electricity. Due to the heat and humidity I have precious family photos that are now stuck to the glass within the frame. Can you help me save these photos?
Katrina from New Orleans, LA
Unfortunately, there is very little that can be done that won't risk more damage to the photograph. I manage my family's photographic studio and we specialize in copy and restoration of old photographs. We have heard many horror stories involving this same situation where attempts were made to remove the photo from the glass from immersing the image and glass in water to loosen the grip, to applying heat or steam. In most cases, the image must simply be copied (through the glass) and reproduced in order to save the image, rather than to risk losing it altogether.
If these are snapshots where you still have the negative, you would be better off to simply have new prints made. Be very weary of tips that could risk the loss of the image altogether, especially if it is the only one in existence. Technology has opened the door for marvelous opportunities to salvage images by copying and reproducing them, with very little loss of quality, in fact, they may even be better. Cassie in KY (12/01/2000)
For scrap booking there is a product called "Undo" that probably would work. You spray it on anything "stuck" and it will unstick it without hurting the picture.
Q. Will un-du Adhesive Remover release a photo that may be stuck to the glass of a picture frame?
A. No, unfortunately it will not. Sometimes moisture will get between the glass and photo in a picture frame. Under certain conditions the moisture will heat up and create a type of adhesive between the glass and the emulsion on the photo. Our suggestion is to take the glass and photo somewhere you can have a high definition scan made and then have the photo reproduced digitally. (07/25/2005)
Perfect solution. Put your blow dryer on hot setting and blow the back of the glass that the photo is stuck on. After about 30 seconds, begin to pull gently on a corner. Continue using the dryer and the entire picture will come off slowly, but totally undamaged. I just now did this to a picture that was stuck on a piece of glass and it worked perfectly and did not damage my photo. Try it, it works.
This is from the Kodak website, thought it might help. I am ready to try it on my photos.
The primary reason why photographs stick to the glass in their frames or to each other is fluctuations in humidity. As the humidity rises, photographs have a tendency to absorb some of this moisture, causing their emulsion to become slightly soft. When the humidity level drops, any softened emulsion adhering to the glass or other prints will then cause them to stick.
Let me emphasize that the following information is provided strictly on a "do it at your own risk" basis. Kodak can accept no responsibility if any damage occurs. For that reason, if you decide to try this, we strongly urge you to begin by testing the procedure on one of the less important prints.
If you'd like to attempt to separate your prints, please use the following procedure.
Start with a large flat pan of clear, cold water and put it in your freezer for about 10 minutes with the prints soaking in the pan. Wearing rubber gloves to protect your hands from the cold, carefully begin to separate the pictures. Work on the prints slowly and do not force the separation as damage may occur. Keep them submerged in the cold water as you work on them. Do not run water directly on them, as this may cause physical damage to the already-softened photographic paper emulsions.
Once separated, lay them out on flat screens, if possible, and allow to air dry at room temperature. Do not attempt to pat them dry or touch the surface of the picture in any way until your prints have dried completely.
Once dry, place them between archival papers in a heavy book for several days to flatten them.
Thank you for visiting the Kodak Web site. If you need to reply to this e-mail, please reply 'with history' (include any previous e-mail) so we can expedite our service to you. If you should have future questions on Kodak products or services, please be sure to revisit our Web site as we are continually adding information to enhance our service.
Renee R. Kodak Information and Technical Support
That blowdrying does not work. It only intensifies the heat between the picture and the glass. I did it and the matter was only made worse. (04/24/2008)
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