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Photo Restoration Repairing damaged photos

Old Photo Restoration

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  #1  
Old 05-18-2010, 08:42 PM
AprylRED's Avatar
AprylRED AprylRED is offline
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Talking Old Photo Restoration

Hi photo people!

I'm April or RED...either is fine. I'm new to this site and was wondering if I could get help with a problem.


Ok, I have 8 photos that are of my grandmother and are in terrible shape. Normally, I do retouching myself with little problem, Hell, that's my job, but not OLD photos that are this bad and so personal. My grandmother is picky. haha and i'm just stressing and was wondering if someone would be kind enough to look at them and give me some step by step instructions on one or 2 to get me started. The grain is bad and some are really dark and 2 are almost non-existent, they are so faded out multi-colored. The color won't be a problem because she wants them Sepia or B/W. I don't want someone to DO them for me, but I want to learn how to do them myself. I only have CS2 right now...btw.
I have Skype and thought it would be fun to have someone help me go through one or 2 of the really bad ones, so I get the feel of it. Kind of like someone looking over my shoulders and hitting my knuckles with a ruler if I mess up. LOL! Ok, maybe not the last part...but you get the idea.
My Skype name is: AprylRed

Examples: http://yfrog.com/jyimg015p
http://yfrog.com/eoimg019p
http://yfrog.com/izimg012p

Thanks!
www.innersanctumphotography.com
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  #2  
Old 05-18-2010, 10:43 PM
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TommyO TommyO is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

April,

Welcome to RetouchPro !

Restoration has a little different workflow that retouching. Not harder, just different.

One of the first things we often do is examine the channels for differences or good attributes we can exploit. I picked the image "img018d.png" as an example. The red and green channels are quite good; the blue channel is where most of the damage is.

In this case we often replace the bad channel. There are several methods. Since color is not an issue, it gets easier. However, the calculations or apply image commands often work best. Many users prefer a channel mixer layer. Either way can get you there.

I think once you get rid of the blue channel, you'll be 50% there. The rest will be old fashioned dust-scratch, healing, cloning. There are also good threads on RP about "degrunge", "smudging", as well as very good artistic approaches as by Florin.

One of the hardest areas will be the skin. There is a blotchy, grainy, noisy quality to the entire image which is more noticeable in the skin... and harder to fix there while leaving it looking real. You may have to focus most of your work there.

Good luck with it.
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  #3  
Old 05-18-2010, 11:26 PM
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AprylRED AprylRED is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

Thanks for the info. Stupid question though...How can you tell which Channel is "bad"

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  #4  
Old 05-19-2010, 08:31 AM
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TommyO TommyO is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

It's just a matter of cycling through them and using your eyes.

You can use the channels tab, then click each one at a time. Or, Ctrl-~ views the composite, Ctrl-1 > Red, Ctrl-2 > Green, Ctrl-3 > Blue.

We also often convert to CMYK or LAB to see if there is an advantage in one of those modes. Again, just Ctrl-1.... ctrl-2... ctrl-3 to quickly view each channel. Quite often, one mode is better than another.

No stupid questions.... Comparing channels, exploiting in apply image, and many other concepts are things not often used in retouch. Don't forget to check out the Tutorials section of RP. Though some tutorials are getting old, they are still valid.

By the way, I like your website and your work. Your are quite a good artist and photographer.
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  #5  
Old 05-19-2010, 12:39 PM
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James Penner James Penner is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

I don't have time right now to go into the details (only have a few minutes for break) but I played with one of the images, and if you like the results so far I can let you know what I did (the image is by no means in finished condition... just as far as I could go in about 15 minutes =)
Attached Images
File Type: jpg jyimg015p.jpg (77.9 KB, 75 views)
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  #6  
Old 05-19-2010, 02:48 PM
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AprylRED AprylRED is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

That's very nice! I would LOVE to know what you did. I only have CS2 right now, but will prob. be getting CS5 very soon.
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  #7  
Old 05-19-2010, 02:50 PM
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AprylRED AprylRED is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

Yes, I will look at the videos when I have time to play with the picture and watch. Thanks so much!



Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyO View Post
It's just a matter of cycling through them and using your eyes.

You can use the channels tab, then click each one at a time. Or, Ctrl-~ views the composite, Ctrl-1 > Red, Ctrl-2 > Green, Ctrl-3 > Blue.

We also often convert to CMYK or LAB to see if there is an advantage in one of those modes. Again, just Ctrl-1.... ctrl-2... ctrl-3 to quickly view each channel. Quite often, one mode is better than another.

No stupid questions.... Comparing channels, exploiting in apply image, and many other concepts are things not often used in retouch. Don't forget to check out the Tutorials section of RP. Though some tutorials are getting old, they are still valid.

By the way, I like your website and your work. Your are quite a good artist and photographer.
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  #8  
Old 05-19-2010, 05:17 PM
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James Penner James Penner is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

Hi AprylRED,

This was a bit of an experiment, but here’s what I did:
Looking at the channels, the green one seemed to be the best, so I started there. I used a Channel Mixer adjustment layer set to monochrome, red -30, green 100, blue -30.

That created a relatively dark image, but it seemed to reduce a lot of the noise. From there, I separated the image into its low and high frequencies (see this thread for more information: http://www.modelmayhem.com/po.php?thread_id=439098), and I used a curves adjustment to increase the brightness of the low frequency layer.

At that point, I duplicated the high frequency layer again to increase the sharpness and then used a mask to better control the high frequency areas (trying to hide the noise as much as possible in areas that didn’t really matter, like the background, for example).

That’s the gist of it. Hope that helps!
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  #9  
Old 05-20-2010, 06:47 AM
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Flora Flora is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

Hi!

I 'played' with a different picture using the Magenta Channel after changing the image to the CMYK Mode.

Talking about Channels they are usually in the Layers Panel (Attachment 2) otherwise they can be found by clicking on the Window Tab (top Menu bar) and selecting 'Channels' from the cascading Menu.

As TommyO already pointed out, you decide which channel can be used (good channel) or, if necessary, which should be fixed/replaced by scrolling through them. (example Attachment 2)

Very nice James Penner!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg F_img013.jpg (199.4 KB, 91 views)
File Type: jpg SNAP-009.jpg (40.8 KB, 60 views)
File Type: jpg Channels.jpg (196.5 KB, 72 views)
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  #10  
Old 05-22-2010, 01:02 AM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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Re: Old Photo Restoration

hi april and welcome to RP.

i've moved this thread to the more specific 'photo restoration' forum. i see you're already getting some excellent help. we have some real magicians here, flora being one of my favorites and i see she's graced you with some work. so, pay attention, have fun, and jump right in with your own renditions
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