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Help Please! Badly discolored photo.

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Old 04-10-2006, 10:29 AM
Syd Syd is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 275
Help Please! Badly discolored photo.

I have given this one my best shot but I just can't seem to get it right. I am wondering perhaps if the colors are too far gone. I have tried virtually every technique I know. I have switched to Lab color and Gaussian blurred the a and b channels. I have tried to correct the tones in CMYK. I have tried applying various channels with masks to bring out the colors. I seem to be hovering between two extremes: a crisp-'ish' image speckled with cyan and magenta or a muddy dark mess. Another problem that is causing me difficulty is balancing the highlights and shadows. A third problem is the grain on the paper. I have had some degree of success with the FFT filter but was wondering if anyone had other ideas. This is how I have approached the image thus far: I duplicated it and applied the FFT filter to the one copy. I then worked on that with the healing brush and clone tool and aslo tried to adjust the shadows and highlights. I then gave the other copy a simple auto levels and gaussian blurred that untill the speckling disappeared. Then I dragged that copy onto the b&w and set the blending mode to color. After that I added a selective color layer (took some more cyan out of the neutrals and reds), a color balance layer and used the color replacement tool on the rocks at the bottom. That pretty much sums it up but I am not satisfied with the result and would really love to know how others would have approached it and what suggestions you have for an image like this. I am attaching the original and my attempts thus far.

Sincerely Syd
Attached Images
File Type: jpg waterfall.jpg (97.3 KB, 59 views)
File Type: jpg waterfallretouch.jpg (99.3 KB, 70 views)
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Old 04-10-2006, 01:15 PM
palomino palomino is offline
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 91
I actually don't think this looks as bad as you think. It is a little hazy/muted from all the work you have done on it, but I think the color actually looks quite good for how buried it was. I bumped up the saturation and contrast in curves and then sharpened a bit. Overall I think it's a pretty good recovery.

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File Type: jpg bawaterfallweb.jpg (99.9 KB, 47 views)
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Old 04-10-2006, 02:22 PM
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Cameraken Cameraken is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Lancashire (UK)
Posts: 1,158
Hi Syd.

I also think it looks OK.

Adjusted Levels
Increased Saturation
Lightened Face
Painted out cast on face

My results are similar to yours. I have attached my layers.
What do you think is wrong?

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File Type: jpg Ken_waterfall.jpg (99.6 KB, 43 views)
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Old 04-10-2006, 11:35 PM
Syd Syd is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 275
Kate and Ken

Thanks for the help. Amazing what an increase in saturation and some sharpening can do. I needed to walk away for a while and come back to it again. I also think I was making it more complicated than it actually was. I was using Apply Image and masking off areas while trying to boost others and I got so bogged down in that, that I lost sight of the overall look of it. Also I was really just wondering how others would have approached this image and hoping to learn fom what they had to say. Thanks once again.

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