Linda Grashoff's Photography Adventures

Close to Home 5

June 8, 2020

It’s been three weeks since the last post, and three weeks since I finally decided not to push my luck with the external hard drive that houses my Lightroom catalog and all my photographs. I had been seeing just too many corrupted files as I was going through the archives. So I have not turned on that drive except to try repairs. My attempts didn’t work, and I’m waiting for an IT person at my former place of employment to get back to me with her suggestions. I have a backup of all but the most recent downloads, so all will not be lost. But still . . .

Meanwhile, here are a few photographs I took around my neighborhood last year that I don’t think I’ve posted and a few more that I downloaded before declaring my drive dangerous to use. Maybe by next week I will have repaired the damaged files and transferred the uncorrupted ones to my new drive. But if I can’t repair them, I have a question for other photographers or techies reading this post: Will cloning corrupted files to a brand-new hard drive hurt the new drive? I have thousands of photographs, and to go through them all to find those that are corrupt would take a bit of time. If you’d rather not put your recommendations in the comments section, you may used the email form in the About section of this blog.

Tree reflected in Buttonbush Vernal Pool, May 5, 2019

2 Ghosts on Wildflower Hill, June 15, 2019

Waterlily leaves in Meadow Pond, May 3, 2020

4 The last—for a while—sunset through bare branches, May 7, 2020

5 Dumpster discovered in the groundskeeping area of our community

The side of the dumpster in full sun

7 Another side of the dumpster

8 Detail of an untitled sculpture by Forbes Whiteside on the Kendal at Oberlin grounds

22 responses

  1. An outstanding set of images, Linda, especially the first. Sorry to hear of your HD problems and corrupted files. I have recently installed System Mechanic to repair problems I have had for months that caused a very slow response and very long bootup. I noticed an immediate improvement. However, I’m not sure that it can repair files that are not windows system files so I hesitate to recommend it. I would be interested in the solution to your problem so I’m hoping you’ll keep us informed.


    June 8, 2020 at 5:57 PM

    • Thanks, Ken. Yeah, I’m on a Mac. Will keep you informed—I hope with good news.


      June 8, 2020 at 7:54 PM

  2. Great images as always Linda 😊 Re your corrupt files, the only reason they might cause you trouble if they are transferred to a new drive would be if they have been corrupted by a virus of some sort. Perhaps you could do a thorough virus scan first. I’ve been in that position myself so good luck with it.


    June 8, 2020 at 6:01 PM

  3. Sorry you’re having hard drive problems. We all go through that sooner or later (or both). A few months ago I bought a very-high-capacity drive that failed within a couple of weeks. Everything was backed up elsewhere so nothing was lost, but it sure was a nuisance to get the drive replaced and copy my files all over again.

    You recorded great colors in #6. That swathe of orange certainly grabs the eye.

    #2 looks like it involved intentional camera movement. “Ghosts” is a good word to describe it.

    In #1, did you consider cropping off the top third, which includes a lot of white toward the right, so that the remaining image would be panoramic and have designs throughout?

    Liked by 1 person

    June 8, 2020 at 6:05 PM

    • Glad you didn’t lose any photos, Steve. Someday we’ll have storage media that won’t degrade over time. I hope. That swath of orange seemed too bright to me, but when I tried adjusting it in Photoshop, it didn’t look right. So I left it. Yes, #2 did involve intentional camera movement. I need to do more of those. And no, I didn’t consider lopping off the top of #1, but I should have. I think I’d like it better as a panoramic. I got too caught up in liking the U shape of the darker reflections. Thanks for your suggestion.


      June 9, 2020 at 8:59 PM

  4. Hi. I’m really sorry to hear you had trouble. I’m a long time Mac user. I recommend DiskWarrior. It’s extremely powerful. It saved my bacon one time when I didn’t have a back up. Absolutely worth it. When you get a new drive, I recommend very strongly that you work out a good back up system. Find the email address on my main website and email me and I’ll give you specific recommendations. Just so you know, I have supported offices with up to 20 Macs. Email is on the About page. Copying the files to a new drive shouldn’t hurt anything.

    Liked by 1 person

    June 8, 2020 at 9:05 PM

    • Maybe you know the answer to this, Michael: Would DiskWarrior run on an otherwise empty thumb drive containing only a corrupted image file? Would this be a good way to see if DiskWarrior can fix my image files? I hesitate to open the bad drive again if I can test DiskWarrior on one of the corrupt files I have saved to my internal drive (and then to the thumb drive). I’m relieved to hear you say that copying the files to a new drive shouldn’t hurt anything. I sent you email asking for your specific backup recommendations and told you how I’m backing up now.

      Liked by 1 person

      June 13, 2020 at 5:09 PM

  5. Worst nightmare.. Excellent set, Linda! 1 and 5 are fav. Hope you get back all of them!

    Liked by 1 person

    June 9, 2020 at 3:30 AM

    • I’m still thinking/researching/waiting about the problem. Thanks for your sympathy, Harrie.


      June 13, 2020 at 5:10 PM

  6. Jag

    Wonderful pictures Linda! Good luck with your photographs on the external hard drive! I had that type of problems last year, and I had to send it away to Norway to save the photos. Expensive, but worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

    June 9, 2020 at 6:07 AM

  7. The composition and colors of the waterlily photo is wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    June 9, 2020 at 8:31 AM

    • Thanks, Clare. That photo made it into the current FAVA online show. I was pleased, even though the larger version of the photo looks terrible. Don’t know if that’s their fault or mine.


      June 13, 2020 at 5:18 PM

  8. Fantastic collection, Linda! So sorry to hear about your technical woes.

    Liked by 1 person

    June 9, 2020 at 11:59 AM

    • Thanks, Lemony. I just hope the problem is with the drive and not because of some other problem I’ve never heard of and wouldn’t know—at all—how to address.


      June 13, 2020 at 5:20 PM

  9. This may be one of my favorite posts of yours, though there are many contenders. The first photograph calms my nerves and keeps me looking – the almost monochrome palette and the diagonals, the shimmering water, beautiful. “Ghosts” has just the right balance between fantasy and reality, for my taste anyway. The quieted-down palette again in “Waterlily Leaves” complements the subject. Very elegant. Then from the also subdued tones of “Sunset” to the dumpster – wow, what a wake-up. The paint has a liquid quality, like your iron bacteria. Did you think about that and emphasize it? I love the way the left and middle of the image seem to be falling away from the rusty side. The full sun view is positively tropical, delicious. Peachy, I should say! The sculpture detail is well chosen. It’s a great collection, Linda. I hope the hard drive issues are sorted soon – you know I’d help if I could.

    Liked by 1 person

    June 9, 2020 at 12:52 PM

  10. Hi Linda, I agree with several of the comments others have already submitted. I’m a PC person, but my wife uses a Mac. I know that Macs are traditionally more virus-resistant than PCs, but can still have their related issues. How old is the external hard drive? If its age is considerable (maybe more than 7 or so), I’d think that corrupt files are likely a factor of that, rather than having been virus-induced, especially if you’ve had no other issues (strange websites popping up, etc.). I also think it unlikely that transferring corrupted photos to a new HDD would cause it any damage, but they are likely to remain corrupted. By all means, try Michael’s suggested DiskWarrior first. I use System Mechanic (as does Ken), which was installed by Dell during a help session several years ago; I don’t know if it works on a Mac. Regarding your photos, the first two are my favorites, and I agree with Steve about trying the crop on the first; I’d also suggest darkening the highlights in the right half (I’d use Lightroom for that). I love the hammered-mirror effect!


    June 9, 2020 at 11:38 PM

  11. Beautiful images, Linda – my favourites are 1, 2 (ohhhh!), 6 and 7. I’m sorry, but I can’t make any useful suggestions about your IT problems – except I suppose that if all else fails, then spend the money and get professional help; this is certainly what I would do myself. Good luck! Adrian 🙂


    June 10, 2020 at 1:54 AM

  12. Hi, Linda. I am sorry that you haven’t found a solution to the corrupted files yet and do hope your tech person has a way of recovering them. I know that some disk makers have recovery programs but I’d guess you have already gone that route. It sounds as though Mike may have the best possibility for you. I lost two external hard drives at the end of 2018 due to an illness that kept me laid up for a few months. I had left my computer with attached external drives sleeping and I guess two of them got fried that way. All on them was lost including my Lightroom catalog but happily it was rebuilt with some help. I hope you get to say the same.
    Once again you have shown us that something as seemingly unremarkable as a rusted dumpster can have beauty for us to enjoy. Not many people make a category of photographed trash receptacles but you make it work. #6 is my favorite. Great abstract.


    June 19, 2020 at 12:28 PM

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