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Me again, trying to find out if I am a good student .
This restoration was on request. (the first one on request and of course didn't charge for it ) The original was about 2x3 in. I spent about 6 hours on it and this is what I did:
1.- Scanned it with a 300 resolution output
4.- Auto Levels, Auto Contrast
5.- De-Crack action 2 times (found out this action is wonderful but sometimes it "pixelates" and spots the picture.
6.- Clone, Clone, Clone, Heal, Heal, Heal
7.- Changed canvas size, completed and restored background
8.- Completed suit and applied new texture to it.
9.- Extracted face>dust and scratches>reduced opacity>layer mask>painted on face features.
Please let me know how you think I did...if it looks a bit close to profesional, what else can I do to improve it and "grade" me.
Respectfully yours....(trying to get on the teachers' good side jeje)
Hi Mosha. I'll play teacher.
First off, you did a pretty good job on this, especially around the eye area (I like that you haven't resorted to heavy blurring as a means of removing damage). For my taste, the image has too much contrast. The forehead and hairline could use a bit more work, but all in all, I'm sure a customer would be very happy with your results.
Having said that, there are some other issues that, as a "teacher" I would address.
I noticed that you scanned in RGB, but went straight to BW filter. You didn't mention whether you checked the channels for a better image - one of the main reasons for scanning in RGB.
I don't recommend using "auto" anything, especially "brightness/contrast". These old photos are lacking contrast, but pumping it up drastically, most often loses details in the shadows, blows out the highlights, and generally creates an overly contrasty image. I recommend adjusting with curves or levels - using an adjustment layer (if your software has that feature). Unless it's a problem in a specific part of the image, I would put off major contrast adjustments until the very end.
I'm not sure why you extracted anything, especially since you masked the extraction. I personally think that adds to your workflow and time, and isn't necessary. If you're going to mask, you don't need to extract anything.
Be very careful when "creating" a texture. It has a tendancy to look flat and fake. The healing brush is much better suited for this, and it's main feature is it's ability to preserve texture.
A couple of tips: after you "think" you're done, flip the image horizontally and look at it. You'll notice problem areas because you'll have a "new" perspective on it. Secondly, print a proof copy. You'll most likely see areas that are blown out or missing detail, and any areas that look fake.
One last thing, don't concern yourself with how long it takes you to do one of these. You will naturally gain speed as you perfect your techniques.
Ditto the previous comment. The hairline needs work to make it look natural. Good job in not blowing out the forehead. The eyes are a little heavy on the eyelashes. Makes him look a bit feminine. The rest of the eye part is very well done. I had trouble with that part simply because the original photo was so damaged in that area. Correcting the texture was a bit difficult. I tend towards less blur in the skin, especially on men; however, you did a pretty good job without too much blur. Good job removing the color cast. Next time try either and/or both hue/sat - selective color. Both will do a pretty good job without all the fuss you went to.
We all learn. Especially me. This is a really good place to get positive, helpful input.
B+ as well.
Vikki and Janet:
First of all thank you all for going along with me….always
I’ll try to fix the contrast as well as the hairline…although I still don’t know how Ill do it
I am embarrassed to confess I don’t know how to use channels (or paths)….I’ve tried but haven’t been able to understand how to handle and take advantage of them, as a fact first I went on to curves and levels and fooled around with them and got so doubtful about doing the right thing so I canceled everything. After doing the auto levels, I didn’t use the auto contrast (I remember that). I am using PS 7 so I do have the adjustment layers option but again, don’t know how to use it to its full potential. You are right, in fact I didn’t extract anything, I made a selection of the face with the pen tool and copied it into its own layer, there I masked it to paint on the face features (don’t know why I used the word extracted, sorry).
As to the texture…I love the healing tool, as a fact sometimes I think I use it too much but this time as I mentioned after using the de-crack some parts got some strange spots that made the cloth look strange and too uneven so the only way I could think of to correct this was to add a texture which as you said looked flat and fake; that is why I used the Gaussian blur filter on it. Do you think it still looks fake ??
Janet...I didn´t give him any eyelashes... not sure where he got them
My experience with Photoshop is really, really small, as a matter of fact everything I’ve learned has been thanks to RetouchPro and all of you.
Mosh, you've come to the right place to pick up some good tips. Looks of contributors here!
Funny, but I knew you didn't mean "extract" but rather you copied to a new layer. My advice is the same though. You don't need to do that. Here's a simple tutorial I wrote, that will show you how you can do the same thing without having to make selections.
Adjustment layers are just what the name says. They allow you to have a "levels", or "curves", etc. as a layer over your other layers. Having it there, as opposed to just using the adjustment from the menu, is that it allows you to go back and make adjustments to it at any time. In this instance, you would be able to go back and reduce the contrast or adjust it.
Don't be fearful of your own judgement. As long as you're monitor is showing the proper brightness and contrast, trust your eye. When in doubt, less is better. Mostly because the image will look restored yet still old (which I myself, prefer).
The healing brush can be tricky, especially along edges. A good trick is to use the clone tool to make the repairs, then use the healing brush to lightly bring back the texture.
I highly recommend you take a look at Katrin Eismann's book "Photoshop Restoration and Retouching". It's the best and will make this all a lot easier.
Thanks for everything, every minute I learn something new.
I'll try to get the book you recommended, although I am not sure I'll be able to get it here in Mexico, Don't worry I'll try, maybe by Internet.
...I fully agree with and don't have anything to add to the great tips Vikki and Janet gave you ....
You did quite a nice restoration!
I just wanted to show you the difference between using Auto Contrast/Levels, and changing things while remaining in control .....
I used the Channel Mixer to turn your picture Black&White (you can see the values in the attachment) ... and, after eliminating the scratches etc., I gradually built up tone and contrast.
Hi dear Flora:
Glad to have you back
I'll start experimenting with the channel mixer, thanks..
The small part you fixed looks amazing...so natural...how did you arange de forhead and hair..looks so natural...
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