Co-owner of former photo studio will return negatives dating to 1972
Studio 119 Photography at 627 Grand Ave. closed the day Victoria Canaday’s husband, Dave, died last November.
But the photos he took will live on forever.
Canaday has started the overwhelming process of trying to return negatives and, in some cases, proofs from every single photo session since the business opened in 1972.
Photographs of high school seniors, babies, pets, weddings and families captured in time —Victoria and Dave saved everything and filed it away in boxes and cabinets by date.
“I kind of have a system,” Canaday said.
“She has an incredible memory,” said her daughter-in-law, Kari Canaday. “Part of the filing system’s in her head.”
“I am the archive,” Canaday boasts.
The couple considered it a service to the community to keep and maintain “our families’ ” history, Canaday said Sunday.
Now it’s time for the files to go back into their clients’ hands, “so that they can continue on the history,” she said.
The negatives that aren’t claimed will be “returned to Mother Earth,” she said.
Canaday also plans to sell the historic 1898 Victorian building, which has been both home and business for her. The Canadays were only the third owners.
“Whoever gets it will enjoy this old building,” she said. “It’s such an integral part of the valley.”
The walls are covered with framed photographs, some patriotic, some spanning the ages, some of her and Dave dressed as different characters. In one old-time photo, she stares with goo-goo eyes at her lover while leaning across a fancy vintage car.
She points out one portrait of a fluffy cat.
“We had to go to that cat’s home and photograph him in his chair,” Canaday said laughing.
She remembered a photo session of a family with 2-year-old twins, a 6-year-old, an 8-year-old, a teenager, mom and dad, a Siamese cat and a poodle.
“Oh, it was a wonderful challenge,” she said.
“We had to get everybody with ears up and looking good. But it worked.”
Each photograph triggers memories for Canaday, and a story comes with every one.
She looks forward to people coming by and reminiscing a bit when they reclaim the negatives, despite how hard it will be for her to part with them.
If you or your family has ever had Studio 119 take your photograph, Canaday said she has it, “guaranteed.” So far, about a dozen people have contacted her.
If you can recall the year the photo was taken, that will help Canaday retrieve her files.