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Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

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  #1  
Old 08-11-2009, 12:40 PM
ChrisVas ChrisVas is offline
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Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Hi,
I am trying to improve an old photo of my dad painting by the sea. The image I've posted is the best I've been able to do so far with my limited skill set. I've been trying to enhance the contrast in his face without much luck. I'd like to bring out his features. Also, I have been trying to get more detail on his canvas. In the original, the canvas edge was lost and blended with the overexposed sky. I managed to isolate it and add some contrast to it but I'd like it to look smoother. Finally, should I do anything to the sky to add some detail to it?

Thanks so much for any ideas or suggestions that you have.
Take care,
Chris
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File Type: jpg BytheSea.jpg (93.5 KB, 103 views)
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  #2  
Old 08-11-2009, 03:22 PM
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Cupcake Cupcake is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Use the selective color tool after you make it a RGB.
Colors: white,black & neutrals.
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File Type: jpg Artist.jpg (92.3 KB, 57 views)
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  #3  
Old 08-11-2009, 03:49 PM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Welcome back to RetouchPRO Chris

If you were to post a high resolution color scan of the original.. we could suggest ways to bring out more details... although it looks to me that you have done quite well in that regard.. The picture you posted looks pretty good!

It would be nice to have a before and after to be able to judge what you have done... and it would also help knowing what retouching software you are using to facilitate giving proper hints and/or suggestions..

If you want to post a larger resolution scan that is over 100K of your Original or your WIP (Work In Progress) that we could look at and possibly work on... then you can host your image elsewhere and attach a link in the thread.

Other free Hosts if you do not have your own site:
ImageVenue.com (3Meg max, free) pixentral.com (2Meg max, free) photobucket.com (1 Meg max free, 5 Meg PRO) mediafire.com (100 Meg per file, free) post a link in the thread to the site that is hosting the larger image.
You can also use these Free sites: (YouSendIt.com); (Podmailing.com);(Pando.com); (Sendspace.com) to send your original to your own email address, then open that email message, copy the link, and post that link in the thread.

Also attach an under 100K version (as you did) in the thread so the thread remains useful in the future, regardless of external links.
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Old 08-11-2009, 04:12 PM
ChrisVas ChrisVas is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Hi,
Sorry about not mentioning the software I am using. It is Photoshop CS3 Extended Version 10.0. I have placed a higher res and untouched image at http://www.intelligentlight.com/phot...inting-600.jpg and attached the smaller version to this post.

Cupcake: thank you for your suggestions. Your version of the image looks so much better - I'll have to practice using the selective color tool. That is, in Photoshop (again, sorry that I didn't mention it in my first post).

0lBaldy: Thank you for the welcome. After being absent awhile I was hesitant to post. This forum is so very friendly and helpful. Thank you, too, for the suggestions. I hope that I followed them properly.

Take care,
Chris
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File Type: jpg Dadpainting-orig.jpg (94.5 KB, 31 views)
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  #5  
Old 08-11-2009, 05:46 PM
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LonK LonK is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Hi Chris. Great shot of your dad.

My take using your first small attachment and PSCS3e: Sweep over the head/face with a large/soft highlight dodge brush. Select the art piece and kick up contrast with curves. A blurred cloudy sky calms the hot background. Sepia tone for oldie flavor. Reduce noise some, then sharpen.

Good luck,
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File Type: jpg ArtistRT.jpg (99.5 KB, 89 views)
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  #6  
Old 08-11-2009, 05:54 PM
ChrisVas ChrisVas is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Hi LonK,
That is fantastic! Would you mind elaborating a little more on how you did the sky. Is that a sky from a stock photo?

Thank you so much for your work and your advice. I really appreciate everyone's input. It gives me renewed hope for the picture and for improving my skills.

Take care,
Chris
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Old 08-11-2009, 07:01 PM
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LonK LonK is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Thanks Chris. For the sky in this case I simply used the magic wand to select the white sky (~35 tolerance); 'paste into' that selection with the clouds (I have a number of cloud photos for this purpose); clean up mask by painting; apply gradient to mask to fade lower area; adjust brightness/contrast with levels.

HTH,
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Old 08-11-2009, 08:21 PM
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aartist aartist is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Straighten horizon.
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  #9  
Old 08-12-2009, 01:56 AM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

cupcake, nicely done

and lonk, that's a wow!
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  #10  
Old 08-12-2009, 12:06 PM
ChrisVas ChrisVas is offline
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Smile Re: Enhancing contrast on old b x w photo

Yes, Thank you both for your tutelage. I appreciate it greatly and will get to work on it.

Regards,
Chris
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