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My worst nightmare (light leak)

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  #1  
Old 11-09-2007, 06:15 PM
Pazzo Pazzo is offline
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My worst nightmare (light leak)

In the past year I've scanned my slide collection (10,000 slides) using a Nikon 4000 scanner with autofeeder. Each slide is about 24 Mpix (10MB).

There's one series of about 300 slides that got locally overexposed because of a tiny dent in the backdoor of the (Pentax) camera that I was using at the time (1986). An example of the result can be seen in attached example: A combination of yellow and white overexposed areas that have caused me many sleepless nights. I've tried gradients in layers, selective masking, selective colors, dodging and burning tools, and so on: After over 40 hours of experiments I still haven't found a solution to this problem.

I'm now at the point of giving up and simply cropping the images to eliminate the overexposed areas or forget about retouching altogether.

Has anyone ever encountered this problem and found a solution? Ideally, I'd like to create a Photoshop layer with a mask that allows a gradient in brightness to match each overexposed area, but that probably still needs to be invented by Adobe.

Any help is appreciated. Key for me is to find a multi-step approach that I can use to manually fix most of these 300 slides.

Thanks in advance,
Pazzo
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File Type: jpg 1986_test.jpg (84.2 KB, 89 views)
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Old 11-09-2007, 07:30 PM
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Markzebra Markzebra is offline
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Re: My worst nightmare

The highlight in that example is completely blown, there is no detail at all. So its a no I'm afraid if they are all like that.

It is of course possible to rebuild the lost detail in the highlight by duplicating areas from the surround, but with 300 of them .. well I'm not sure, and they wont be true captures any more.
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Old 11-10-2007, 02:21 PM
Pazzo Pazzo is offline
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Re: My worst nightmare

Hi Mark,
Thanks for the fast reply. I haven't given up hope yet.
Each original image is 4000 x 6000 pixels. The Nikon scanner actually has maintained quite some detail, even in the overexposed areas. By cropping the test image to fit the 100k attachment limit I had to reduce it substantially thereby eliminating most detail. I've added another, enlarged, example. Given the fact that I have some 300 slides with this leakage problem, I'm looking for a generic resolution to the problem rather than fixing these test slides.

I've checked all the light leakage tutorials and posts. The problem with my slides is that they have an elliptical leakage shape, which cannot be fixed using the Photoshop gradients. I've experimented with other gradients such as the one's in the Harry Filter plugins, but also these gradients cannot be structured to fit these areas.
Ideally, I'd like to use the leakage area to build a new brush with elliptical shape and a gradient that can be varied towards the edges.
Any suggestions appreciated.
Pazzo
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Old 11-10-2007, 10:28 PM
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Markzebra Markzebra is offline
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Re: My worst nightmare

No, your right, its the selection of your damaged area that creates the biggest problem. This is because its exposure leakage, its affected by the underlying image. It has fringing, meaning that you will need more than one mask probably, one for the burn and aother for the burn edge. Creating the masks almost has to be done manually each time using channel data because the burnt areas are not the same each time.

You can produce some channel mix/curve moves i suppose that will go some way to restoring some of the damage in different areas. It is so blown, the only channel with meaningful detail is Green with a small touch of Blue. This will cause posterisation and breakup of the restored area I'm certain. It would be less time consuming to rebuild the damaged areas i think.

They are each quite a lot of work. I'm not optimistic for any batch technique that will work for them all sorry.
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Old 11-20-2007, 04:30 PM
Pazzo Pazzo is offline
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Re: My worst nightmare (light leak)

Thanks for the help, Mark.
At least the good news is that, after spending hours experimenting with gradients and searching the web for possible solutions, I haven't overlooked a quick fix.
I'll select the dozen or so slides that are key and create custom gradients for each of them. I'll fix the rest by cropping and cloning. Given the 24 Mpix size, I can do quite some cropping and still end up with a decent quality image. Cheers.
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