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History, Conservation, and Repair The history of photographic prints, and how best to care for and repair them.

What filter/process was used.

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  #1  
Old 09-28-2005, 07:41 PM
Nacoya Nacoya is offline
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What filter/process was used.

I was given a number of photos from the 1920-1930's (i'm guessing here, but as they are of my grans brothers etc that must be close). I was told I was getting some old sepia photos and could i scan and copy them etc etc.
Now these images look more salmon coloured (pink ish) than brown. So what filter or process was used. OR am I confused and they are representative of early 20th century sepia. The reason I ask is that i was going to retouch and recolour them as sepia in photoshop, but when i did they look nothing like the originals.
I have a few and they all exhibit the same tint and were taken by Barr Bros (whomever they were).

I've added just one that I scanned and resized for this post. I haven't touched it other than that.

cheers,

nacoya
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File Type: jpg soldier_original.jpg (84.7 KB, 59 views)
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2005, 11:49 AM
MaryLynn MaryLynn is offline
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Nacoya, I'm not an expert by any means on the process that might have been used but I've encountered the pinkish cast in photos as early as the 1870s. A couple of sources on historical photographs say this variation of tone was common in salted paper prints and albumen prints.

Photographers also toned images with a solution of gold or platinum to improve color and permanence.

Perhaps some of the photographers on this forum can be more definitive.

Great picture!

MaryLynn
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Old 09-29-2005, 11:59 AM
Ken Fournelle Ken Fournelle is offline
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Nacoya,

What you might try is to scan the prints in RGB into Photoshop. Convert them to B&W, ( there are many ways, tutorials to do this), and then sepia tone them yourself.

In the Tutorials section of Retouch Pro there is a tutorial on Toning Black & White So That it is pretty...... This is in The Basics section. This is the method I use and am very happy with it.

Ken
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Old 09-29-2005, 12:38 PM
Ken Fournelle Ken Fournelle is offline
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Here is an example:
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File Type: jpg soldier_original-S copy.jpg (80.3 KB, 34 views)
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  #5  
Old 09-30-2005, 11:13 AM
Nacoya Nacoya is offline
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Hi folks,

thanks for the replies.
MaryLynn that's great info, very interesting, thanks.

Ken, that's actually what i did to the first of the photos i scanned. I ran a D-MAX B&W action to make an emulsified black and white image then cropped and cleaned a bit (though with these photos there is not much to do other than remove blemishes in the original scan). Then i just applied a standard PS sepia filter. That's when i realised that the originals were not sepia as I knew it.

This was the first image (attached) I have decided to just scan , crop, tidy up and slightly enlarge (using 110% method) and reprint as original colour. But i've attached the original and my sepia standard PS version. I did find a number of other filters and actions for sepia, each a little different from the others. But as i say , as the originals i now know aren't sepia then i decided not to convert them.
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File Type: jpg family_original_scan_web.jpg (75.0 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg family_sepia_web.jpg (73.0 KB, 22 views)
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  #6  
Old 09-30-2005, 10:37 PM
cinderella cinderella is offline
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Interesting discussion. Why wouldn't you keep the original color if it is determined that it is accurate in the time period????

What is 110% method of enlarging?
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