World Class Rapid Digitization of Cultural Heritage
We are specialized in digitizing many different static image, film, video and audio carriers. If you have a material that is not highlighted on our website, it is very likely we can help you anyway. Feel free to contact us.
2D & Negatives
Paper, cloth or film, our expertise covers the entire gamut
Photos, books, posters, postcards, paintings or prints; these are just a few examples of what we can digitize for you. Thanks to our state-of-the-art equipment and software, we can deliver precisely the quality you need.
Slides, microfilm, positives or glass plate negatives, black-and-white, grey tones or colour, whatever your specific needs may be, we have the experience, software, and equipment to digitize your unique material.
Digitizing books and images brings history back to life
To an increasing extent, we are able to consult our own history online. Even visits to museums are no longer restricted to physical tours. Paintings, documents, photographs, postcards, and pictures are increasingly available on the Internet. Picturae digitizes these objects in such a way that both the expression and information stay intact.
Conversion from analogue to digital: calendars, minutes, documents, letters, maps, photos or paintings, we digitize them all. In many cases, the originals are too precious or too fragile to display. For this reason, we create high-quality reproductions, capturing the exact colour, information, and fabric expression of the original. After all, the digital copy should convey the same emotion and be every bit as complete as the original.
Bespoke digitization: whatever the goals and objectives of a digitization project, whether it be online display or substitution, for every project, Picturae will prepare a bespoke plan. High digitization speed and quality are never mutually exclusive. We work in accordance with a quality assurance system in compliance with the Metamorfoze standard, a quality level only a few companies can guarantee or deliver. Picturae provides turnkey project management. We can even provide a proper database link for the digitized collection as well as a link to a search engine.
“A picture shows me at a glance what it takes dozens of pages of a book to expound” (Ivan Turgenev, 1862, Fathers and Sons). Picturae offers the latest, most advanced equipment and solutions to digitize pictures of every imaginable shape and size.
An ancient method to capture important information is the art of printing. From the smallest notebooks to the largest atlases; for every format of bound material, Picturae offers the best possible digitization solution in accordance with the latest and highest standards.
National newspapers, regional weekly magazines or a single special edition; whatever you need to digitize, Picturae has the equipment and the knowledge to digitize, record, manage, and display newspapers and magazines of any size, small or extra large.
Posters and placards are true works of art that deserve to be digitized as such; not only according to the highest quality standards, but also with the utmost care for the original. Our processes are designed especially for this purpose.
Metamorfoze, the Netherlands national programme for the preservation of paper heritage, is accommodated in the National Library of the Netherlands. The Metamorfoze guidelines are intended for the mass digitization of two-dimensional visual material and attract a lot of (international) attention from the cultural heritage sector.
Picturae specializes in high-quality digitization according to the Metamorfoze guidelines and will be happy to assist you in the process from inquiry to delivery.
The free web service Deltae is an online quality management tool developed by Picturae. The universal test reader for photographic reproduction focuses on controlling image quality consistency.
The tool compares the measured values with a chosen quality standard to determine the image quality.
The digitization of extra large maps can be quite a challenge, but also posters, construction drawings, prints, paintings, watercolours, etchings, lithographs, pull-down maps, and other large originals require the exact right approach.
Extra large formats are often scanned in pieces for optimum resolution and stitched together digitally. This requires meticulous digitization, for which specific purpose Picturae has developed an XL table. We have the equipment and the experts to convert any XL format into an exact digital reproduction of the original.
One of the main concerns expressed by many customers concerns the protection of the integrity of the originals during the digitization process. We share their concern. Books and magazines are fragile, which is why it is important to minimize the amount of manual intervention.
Our V-shape solution has an angle of only 100 degrees to minimize any stress on the book spine caused by opening the pages. The V-shape digitization process was designed for books measuring up to 40 x 60 cm (single page). Optimal digitization is achieved by gently pressing the pages against a sheet of glass. The configuration of the installation guarantees that the glass sheet will exert minimum force on your materials while still ensuring the highest quality scan possible.
Negative and slide collections are often invisible to the public, stored in repositories. At Picturae, we have developed an innovative production process that enables the digitization of every collection of negatives and slides.
The most famous negative format is, of course, the usual negative, both in black and white and in colour. However, we digitize all types and sizes of negatives and positives. You can contact us for the largest glass plate negatives, transparencies, lantern slides, and even X-ray films.
Negatives & positives
The carriers of transparencies are made of glass or plastic in a variety of different thicknesses and packages. In addition, the condition of the materials varies greatly. Bespoke solutions are developed for each digitization project to ensure that the entire project meets the highest quality standards.
For the efficient digitization of transparency collections, Picturae has developed a concept, the contact sheet method, which uses transparent document sleeves. Inserting the negatives or slides into these covers allows for the entire sleeve to be digitized at once. This speeds up the process so that a large-scale collection can be digitized at very low cost. Furthermore, the resulting product allows for convenient selection of negatives that require higher quality digitization.
There are still many (heritage) institutions that have parts of their collection on analogue carriers such as microfiches, COM fiches, jacketed fiches, roll films or aperture cards. Due to the relatively long life of these analogue carriers, it has been the safest way of archiving for years. Unfortunately, these carriers are not very user-friendly. Reading and obtaining information from microfilm often takes a lot of time. In addition, special equipment is required to view or print the images.
We recommend the digitization of microfilm for a number of reasons. The benefits include an extra security copy, minimization of the transport of original source documents, preservation of the original analogue carriers, digitization in the specified resolution, digitization in grey tones or black and white, increased search speed for digital images, simultaneous access to the scans by multiple users, no more expenses for special reading and printing equipment, access to scans through simple indexation or extensive data entry, the option of linking scans to existing databases, and the option of rescaling drawings to their original format.
Picturae has years of experience and ample expertise, and is able to provide you with appropriate solutions for digitizing your microfiches, COM fiches, jacketed fiches, roll films, and aperture cards. We use the latest, most sophisticated film scanners to guarantee the best quality of digital images.
If you want more information about the digitization of your analogue carrier, our account managers and sales staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have. They can come to your office, or you can visit our office in Heiloo. You are more than welcome, and we will be happy to give you the tour of our operations!
The following is a selection from twenty years of digitization
Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica
Picturae digitizes the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica of the Ritman Library and makes this collection available online. Thanks to Don Brown's gift, it is possible to digitize and make available to the general public (part of) this unique collection in the field of hermetics, alchemy, mysticism, rosary crucifers and kabbala.
Herbarium conveyor belt
The Herbarium Digistreet has been developed in 2013 for the Naturalis Project Digitalization Collection. In about a year and a half, about 4 million recordings have been made and the data of the labels have been unlocked by our partner company Alembo. The efficient working method is possible because the combination of a conveyor belt and innovative software enables not only quick digitalization but, above all, guarantees high quality.
From microfilm to digitale files
For the municipality of Gennep we digitized the microfiches of the Maas and Nierbode 1883-1947 and the Kantonbode 1860. In 2007-2010 we filmed this unique collection from original papers.
Images for the Future
For Images for the Future, over 1,000,000 negatives have been digitized in less than 2 years. The diversity of material and size of the project stimulated the search for creative solutions. In The Hague, a digitalization studio has been set up with innovative techniques to digitize the material faster, more efficiently, at a lower price and especially at high quality. However, safety, quality and care were not lost.
Physical audiovisual carriers are known to be fragile, and signal retrieval is becoming increasingly problematic.
However, this imminent loss of information can be prevented.
Image and sound materials are valuable. These materials are stored on different types of physical carriers. Often recorded on analogue carriers, this information is at risk of being lost due to damage to the carrier or the lack of specific replay equipment. Even the loss of modern digital carriers looms large as they are sometimes even more vulnerable than the old, analogue carriers.
Picturae has the experience, knowledge, and equipment to store audiovisual collections safely, digitize them, and provide them with metadata.
Film is a beautiful and durable medium. Some films even contain images that go back in time 50 or even 80 years. This makes this old film material a valuable source of information that gives us a glimpse of the past.
Due to a lack of working replay equipment or damage to the material, film collections are often no longer accessible. Eventually, film material is also vulnerable to decay, a process that, in many case, has started long before, be it unnoticed.
Digitizing films makes it possible to preserve the images for the future and to make them easily accessible. Proper and safe processing of historical film material requires specific knowledge and experience. At Picturae, we are very experienced in processing and digitizing 8 mm, Super 8, and 16 mm film. Also shrunk (vinegar syndrome) or seriously polluted material can be processed at Picturae.
Common activities include barcoding film reels and cans, identifying materials, and updating the inventory. Film inspection and cleaning involves the application of a leader strip, repairing splices, and manual or mechanical film cleaning.
The formats we digitize include 8 mm, Super 8, 9.5 mm, and 16 mm.
Any optical or magnetic sound can be synchronized. The output scan resolutions are HD, 2K or 4K. File formats such as DPX, FFV1 or QuickTime can be delivered on hard disk or via FTP. Colour grading and image and sound restoration are carried out in postproduction.
Picturae is highly experienced in processing and digitizing large quantities of video tapes. Our automated workflows are designed to convert your material as safely and efficiently as possible. Our method of operation greatly benefits our customers in terms of constant high quality and cost reduction. We only use professional playback equipment including Sony and JVC.
Our video tape services consist of cataloguing, barcoding, and indexing your audiovisual collection. Subsequently, the video cassettes can be cleaned or repaired. We digitize formats including VHS, U-matic, Betacam, DVCAM, in the most common file formats MXF D10, JPEG 2000, QuickTime MOV, FFV1 (open source), and H.264.
Our customer portfolio consists of broadcasters, research institutes, archives, museums and other heritage institutions.
Picturae is highly experienced in processing and digitizing large quantities of sound carriers and materials. We can convert your materials as safely and efficiently as possible thanks to our specially designed automated workflows. Our method of operation greatly benefits our customers in terms of consistency, high quality, and cost reduction. We only use professional audio equipment, such as the Studer A807.
Picturae offers you the option of handling the entire logistics process of your originals from transport, wrapping, and cataloguing to barcoding. Prior to digitizing, we can clean and repair the sound carriers.
The most common formats and operations we perform include compact audio cassettes, ¼ inch audio tape, vinyl, shellac, DAT, and MiniDisc. We deliver 16/24 bit, 48/96 kHz, and file formats FLAC, WAV, BWF, MP3, and Vorbis.
During the conversion process, real-time quality control is performed and metadata are created. The range of options includes XLS, XML, PREMIS, METS, and, just to make sure, MD5 checksums and quality reports. An interesting option is to convert speech into text automatically using speech-to-text technology.
Digitizing is often the starting point of a project, but not always the end goal. We will be happy to share your thoughts and discuss the various strategies to use your digital collection for maximum benefit. Read more about our collection management and (online) publishing solutions.
We will manage the processes during your project so that you can concentrate on your core business
1 Preparation Phase
- Materials planning
- Digitization planning
- Project control
- Collection transport
- General planning
- IT infrastructure preparation
2 Set-up Phase
- Materials analysis
- Testing and start-up
- Processing test samples
- Quality control
- Post requirement check
3 Production Phase
- Reception of originals
- Handling and digitization start-up
- Process monitoring
- Creating deliverables
- QA process of images
- Rescan management
- Delivery of files
4 Control Phase
- In this phase, we assess the quality of the digital images and replace them if necessary
5 Delivery Phase
- Files are organized in predetermined folders in a predefined file structure
- Delivery of the files to the customer's digital storage environment
We digitize an endless stream of herbarium collections
A collection of dried plants, often mounted on sheets of paper and labeled with their scientific names, is not a standard 2D or 3D object. The specimens are 3D objects provided with 2D information. Picturae has developed a conveyor belt with innovative software that takes the fragility and dimensions of the specimens into consideration. This enables us to process collections at high speed and to a high standard of quality. Our partner Alembo helps us to enter the corresponding data to ensure that the specimens are searchable online.
Vice President Picturae Inc.
+1 917 993 3924
Jean Pierre Sens
International Sales Manager AV
International Sales Manager
Picturae - The Netherlands
De Droogmakerij 12
1851 LX Heiloo
tel: +31 (0)72-5320444
Picturae - United States
228 East 45th street, New York
888 Newark Avenue
Jersey City, NJ 07306
United States of America
m: +1 917 993 3924