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enhancing photo of my Mom

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  #1  
Old 09-04-2004, 08:37 PM
tell tell is offline
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enhancing photo of my Mom

Hello, Have been enjoying this wonderful site for awhile now, but this is the first time l have sought help with a photo. This one is of my Mother during a mock wedding day. Am hoping someone might lend me some advice on making this poor quality photo better. Unfortunately l was unable to get hold of the original copy and this one was e-mailed to me. Any advice would be appreciated. Thankyou. Best wishes to you all. Tell.
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Old 09-04-2004, 08:53 PM
tell tell is offline
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This is an attempt in making my photo a little better.
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Old 09-04-2004, 08:59 PM
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DannyRaphael DannyRaphael is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tell
Hello, Have been enjoying this wonderful site for awhile now, but this is the first time l have sought help with a photo. This one is of my Mother during a mock wedding day. Am hoping someone might lend me some advice on making this poor quality photo better. Unfortunately l was unable to get hold of the original copy and this one was e-mailed to me. Any advice would be appreciated. Thankyou. Best wishes to you all. Tell.
Welcome, Tell...

Glad you felt comfortable enough to leap in the pool.

One thing you can do is add a Levels adjustment layer (Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Levels). Click OK in the New Layer dialog, then drag the middle slider to the left. This will open up some of the shadow (dark) areas.

Depending on the image, Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask might help, too...
* Amount ~ 100 give or take
* Radius ~ .5 give or take
* Levels = 0

More advice is sure to follow from other members. Hope this gets you started.

~Danny~
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Old 09-04-2004, 10:33 PM
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byRo byRo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tell
This is an attempt in making my photo a little better.
Hi, Tell,
Welcome in (the first post is always the hardest!)
I think you had a wonderful idea. However doing a collage like this is one of those things that seem easy until you try and do it. So many things to get right, just so people will look and think that you didn't do anything!

Hope someone will be along soon to help with the more interesting aspects. I'll try to help with the (boring ) geometry and physics:

Every time we look at a scene, and especially one with straight lines in it, the eye (brain, actually) will try to guess where the horizon is. There should be a picture below illustrating this. The horizon (which ought to be horizontal) passes through your mother's eyes. If your mother was standing, that would be fine. But, most unfortunately, she is not.
One way to fix it would be to move the image of your mother to lower down, but that would ruin the whole idea. A workaround is to just erase those strong diagonals - I used to stamp tool (see second picture). That way the eye has less to work on.

As the background is more distant, and the subject here is your mother and not the church, I separated out the church (you already have it separate) and did a slight guassian blur (0.6) just to tone down the details. While I was there also straightened the walls (<ctrl><A> to select all, <ctrl><T> Transform, <ctrl><"> Grid, move upper corners).

As I said, great idea, just tried to help sew it all up.

Roland
Attached Images
File Type: jpg [pp-copy-byRo-perspective.jpg (43.1 KB, 51 views)
File Type: jpg pp-copy-byRo.jpg (49.2 KB, 54 views)
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  #5  
Old 09-05-2004, 02:42 AM
tell tell is offline
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Mums dressing up party

Thankyou Roland for your tips. I am aware how powerful natural light is on photo but l didnt realise our need of guessing the horison within the image. Im sure it is a correct one and maybe well known to an experienced Photographer. Its a tip l must try to remember. Thank you for the second image showing the horison and the changes needed. I love this informative altruistic and Professional Guild. Thank you again Roland.... Tell.
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Old 09-05-2004, 06:06 AM
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Flora Flora is offline
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Hi Tell,

A big welcome from me too!

I'm not satisfied with the result I got, but, working on Roland's straightened picture, (I hope Roland doesn't mind .... ) I tried to blend your Mother with her new surroundings ....

I think you did a terrific job with your selection ... but, looking at your picture, what hit me first was the strong difference between tone, contrast and sharpness of you Mom and the very light and faded background .... which made me immediately realize that the two parts of that image didn't belong together originally ....

I used:
Curves, Hue& Saturation and Selective Colors Adjustment Layers trying to balance those differences ....
Blur Tool around the countours of your Mom to soften the edges ...
Finally I blurred your Mom a bit and, like Roland, the background a bit more ......

Attached Images
File Type: jpg F_pp1.jpg (99.4 KB, 53 views)

Last edited by Flora; 09-05-2004 at 06:22 AM.
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Old 09-05-2004, 08:14 AM
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byRo byRo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flora
I hope Roland doesn't mind ....
Quite the contrary. To me it is a great honor.

Tell,
When I woke up this morning, realised that I hadn´t really ansered your question:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tell
... making this poor quality photo better
Compared to some things on the Restoration... thread, the original isn't so bad, we´ll just have to make the best use of it.
On the original you have something we long for on other photos - a real color target. So we have a place to define what is white, further down we have a mid-gray and on your mother´s robe we have black. There´s a tutorial somewhere (links anybody?) that will show how to use that information to get the levels right.

While you at it. A slight curves adjustment could bring out a little more from the shadows of the robe.
The image of your mother transferred to the second photo is actually smaller than the original so do not resize the original, instead make the background bigger.
[tech stuff....] the jpg was optimized for the 'original' pixel dimensions. As there is no original de resample, if we resize we're going to end up with a photocopy-of-a-photocopy-type problem [/tech stuff....]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flora
what hit me first was the strong difference between tone, contrast and sharpness of you Mom and the very light and faded background ....
..and also - The original photo was taken with a flash, and the church photo in overhead sunlight. Once again we have to fool the eyes a bit. I painted some shadows on the parts of the face which would be darker with overhead light (under the eyebrows, bottom of nose, bottom of chin). Just hope I didn´t overdo it - as usual.

Ah, almost forgot. When you cut out the original you ended up leaving a bit of the floor...see it now?

Have fun,

Roland
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File Type: jpg pp-copy-byRo2.jpg (83.8 KB, 38 views)
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  #8  
Old 09-07-2004, 02:48 AM
tell tell is offline
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Not seeing the tree's from the forest

Thank you Roland. I love the idea of changing a photo and in the process making it better. That ability is still out of my reach, however your tips will help in giving me the push l need. Yes blending the whole picture together really is a skill . Thanks again Roland. ..Tell.
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  #9  
Old 09-07-2004, 03:16 AM
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Flora Flora is offline
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Hi everybody,

Roland

Thank you so much for your kindness!!

Great job!!!

Tell

Quote:
Originally Posted by tell
Not seeing the tree's from the forest
it happens regularly to all of us .... that's why a place like RP is great ...

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