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  #11  
Old 11-12-2002, 08:49 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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Thought I would give an update and see if my progress is going in the right direction. I've been learning quite a lot in this project. I feel like a plastic surgeon trying to reconstruct their faces and hair. I learned that there is no data in a blown out area and nothing you try will have any effect on it. I have been recreating the missing areas with a combination of the clone brush to get color followed up with the healing patch to add structure. It seems to be working and I think I have most of the missing areas ready to get the final tone correction, which will be no small feat either.

I copied his left ear, flipped it 180 degrees and attached it to his right side and it looks a lot better than what was left of his right ear. I still have a lot more to do.
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  #12  
Old 11-13-2002, 02:16 AM
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roger_ele roger_ele is offline
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Kevin - I think the goal would be to let it be natural - but easy to look at. The light is coming from behind the couple, over the shoulder. The clothes and ground - everything is lit the same way - I think you just want to make it easier to see - as opposed to a complete "restoration". This is my try at it.

1) Copied background to new layer, changed new layer to screen mode, added layer mask to layer and painted on the layer mask areas I didn't want lighter

2) Multiple curves layers tweaking contrast and detail, each with mask to show curves effect where I wanted it to show. Until i had built up a hopefully natural look.

3) Flattened and cloned to smooth our rough areas on neck and a couple of spots that came out too dark under the nose.

Quite frankly, I don't think I could make it alot better, although there is probably some little things that could be done. The hard part is getting enough seperation and contrast in the face while keeping a natural / not garrish look. If this is confusing I can email you the photoshop file with the layers so you can see it in detail...

This is not a right or wrong kind of think, I am just climbing out of the preverbial box to say "what do we want this to look like"? However you envision it is what you should work towards.

Good Luck!, Roger
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  #13  
Old 11-13-2002, 01:09 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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I think you're right. After looking at the image this morning I can see I may have gone too far. I'll re-group and come at from a different angle. It's frustrating to not be able to correct all that's wrong with this picture.
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  #14  
Old 11-13-2002, 08:42 PM
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roger_ele roger_ele is offline
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Hey Kevin

To me, part of it's charm is the old look - very candid and real. If you want to go in a different direction for something beautiful you could look at turning it into a painting - keep the lighting the same but work the detail until you get the look you love. Just don't loose the shape and the depth of the lighting that is now there.

I don't know very many of the painting techniques - although I do know one person that does a great job working the detail of photographs with the art history brush (use small brushes), all of the grain of the original gets smushed - gives a semi-watercolor look. You could then go back over it to add colors... so many choices... Good Luck!

Roger
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  #15  
Old 11-15-2002, 06:14 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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Here I am again, hopefully going in the right direction now. Let me know what you think, please. Also would you replace the background or leave it as is?
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  #16  
Old 11-15-2002, 07:14 PM
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jeaniesa jeaniesa is offline
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Much better Kevin! The only thing that slightly bothers me is that the right side of the man's face (left as you look at it) seems like it needs a little more contrast or shadow or something. It seems a little flat to me. But, that's just a small nitpick and I think that you've done a great job of restoring the blown out highlights.

As far as replacing the background, I always hesitate to do that in old photos, since it "changes history." Certainly it would be a better picture if there weren't branches/leaves sticking out from behind the man, etc. - and some clouds in the sky would be nice too. BUT, it's likely that there weren't any clouds in the sky when the photo was taken and the leaves were part of the yard where the picture was taken. Unless your client specifically asked you to change the background, I'd leave it as is.

Jeanie
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  #17  
Old 11-15-2002, 08:45 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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Thanks for your comments Jeanie. It's hard for me to see detail like that after staring at the image for a couple of hours. I took your advice and made some more adjustments in that area.

This has been a very good project for me. It has taught me a lot about some areas I was weak in, like layer masks, and creating detail in areas where there was almost no data to work with.

I think I will leave the background alone. I experimented with a couple of attempts and it just didn't look quite right. Also a darker background seemed to excentuate the blown out areas more than I wanted.
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  #18  
Old 11-17-2002, 05:38 PM
Barbie Hocking Barbie Hocking is offline
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I masked the entire faces and applied strong curves. Then I added contrast. I applied selective masks to the light areas of the faces and darkened them. Then I dodged and burned, dodged and burned to smooth the transitions.
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  #19  
Old 11-17-2002, 08:04 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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Thanks for your efforts Barbie. That is the direction I was headed. Your work is very good. I have closed the book on this one though. I did learn a lot about masks and restoring tone and texture. Time to move on to another project, there's no shortage of problem images in my collection.

Thanks again.
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