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Photo Restoration Repairing damaged photos

Copying Photos

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  #1  
Old 11-08-2011, 10:34 AM
Jessie711 Jessie711 is offline
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Copying Photos

I have a number of photos that I want to copy for restoration purposes. I also have photos that have been emailed to me where the original is not available.

I’m considering using my D90 Nikon camera rather than scanning the photos.

What type of setup is best (not to expensive) when coping with a camera?

Is there any advantage in photographing the emailed photos?

Regards
Jessie
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  #2  
Old 11-08-2011, 11:00 AM
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Tony W Tony W is online now
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Re: Copying Photos

No advantage photographing emailed photos - they will already be in digital format either jpeg or tiff so copying will not gain any extra information and is more likely to degrade it.

Copying can be done with camera quite inexpensively. One way would be to mount camera on a tripod and temporarily attach photo to a wall or floor if your tripod can get close enough. Make sure that the back of the camera parallel with the wall/photo in the vertical and horizontal.

Ideally lighting should be even and from both sides of the photo - you could rig a couple of household lights to do this or consider using a couple of flash units.
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Old 11-08-2011, 01:11 PM
Jessie711 Jessie711 is offline
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Re: Copying Photos

Thanks for the reply Tony

Jessie
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Old 11-08-2011, 02:41 PM
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Re: Copying Photos

Also print a small picture 4x6 from the e-mail picture.
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  #5  
Old 11-09-2011, 09:05 AM
Jessie711 Jessie711 is offline
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Re: Copying Photos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cupcake View Post
Also print a small picture 4x6 from the e-mail picture.
Thanks Cupcake

Are you suggesting I photograph the print of the emailed pictures?

I also have some scanned copies, I’m not sure if the original is available.

Regards
Jessie
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  #6  
Old 11-09-2011, 09:31 AM
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Re: Copying Photos

Yes, I have done it, and it turns out very good.
Most small e-mail pictures can print a good 4x6. Photograph that picture outside, on a overcast day. If you have a bounce flash that works also. I did almost 50 pictures for a book; (they were 30 year old pictures fixed in CS5.) Now very large files.
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Old 11-09-2011, 09:48 AM
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Re: Copying Photos

I honestly cannot see any advantage to photograph an emailed picture - in fact the opposite as you will certainly loose something in the copying from a print!

First is the picture an attachment file to email perhaps a jpeg? If it is then there is absolutely no point in printing it out then photographing. This process wil certainly loose detail and resolution of the original image.

Similarly if the image is just one on an emailed page you are better of just copying and pasting direct into your editing application.

If you actually have the original scans these will be either jpeg or tiff and again you are wasting effort and losing quality by printing and photographing.
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Old 11-09-2011, 09:59 AM
Jessie711 Jessie711 is offline
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Smile Re: Copying Photos

Thank you both for your replies.

I guess the best thing is for me to try a couple and see how they turn out.

Regards
Jessie
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  #9  
Old 11-10-2011, 02:03 AM
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Re: Copying Photos

I just want to point out that Tony W is correct here.

There is no advantage printing, then scanning/photographing the already digital photos. You will loose a lot of image quality by doing this (and it is physically impossible recover information that isn't there to begin with).

--

For the paper originals, scanning it is usually much easier, and should also give you better results that photographing them with your camera. A camera setup will take more time to set up, but the advantage is that if you have many pictures each individual image will take less time.

If you use a camera you will have to pay very close attention to:
* Lighting (!)
* Perspective (make sure you shoot straight on from the centre)
* Lens distortion
* Making sure the original is perfectly flat
* Make sure you do not clip highlights and shadows
* Photograph in RAW (this is for restoration, so image quality is very important)
...but it will work.

Using a regular flatbed scanner:
* Scan in high/max resolution.
* Scan to TIFF/PSD/PNG (never JPEG).
* Scan in 16-bit (48-bit) mode.
* Turn off automatic corrections/adjustments in the scanner software.

Last edited by Chain; 11-10-2011 at 02:08 AM.
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  #10  
Old 12-09-2011, 07:09 PM
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Re: Copying Photos

i'm going to also jump in here and reinforce what tony and chain have said. there is no advantage in photographing an already digitized image of any sort. whatever the digitized resolution is is exactly how much detail you're going to get, no matter what you do! a 4200 x 3000 pixel image is not going to add any detail simply because you photograph it. you cant add detail by photographing.

however, you can cheat in digital. you can always paint in more detail. i do this regularly on badly damaged images where detail is missing. and, you can get a simulated increase in detail by increasing the image size. sometimes this can work fairly well, sometimes not. but it also allows you to edit better... sometimes, by adding pixels you actually reduce pixelization... in some cases.

it shld also be noted that even on analog photos scanning is often going to beat taking a photo. my epson scans up to a 12,800 dpi resolution as a 24 bit image. that's a LOT, especially considering i dont normally scan at much over 600 dpi and get very good results, often too good because i tend to pick up paper texture.

do not sell today's scanners short! they tend to be very good. my epson will also do two kinds of scanning, reflective and pass-through. one is for scanning solids and the other for scanning film and slides.

there are times for using a camera, like when the photo is stuck to glass or you're shooting a very old proof where the film is already cracking and lifting off the paper or stock. those you dont want to put into a scanner as you may just complely disintegrate the old, dried film. those types of things warrant using a camera, but not much else; not with today's scanners.
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