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Photo Restoration Repairing damaged photos

Help with this resto for a newbie!

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  #1  
Old 03-05-2013, 04:22 PM
bexar bexar is offline
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Help with this resto for a newbie!

Hi,

The attached photo is my mother taken around 1939 - 40.

I'm not looking for someone to restore the photo for me, I have some resto skills and seeking advice on how to do the 'problem areas'!

The problem areas are the eyes and the mouth. I have tried to rebuild the left eye, then copy to the right and flip. Not much luck! I'm pretty much at a loss as how to handle the mouth.

Is this the case where I simply don't have enough detail to restore these two areas or is it I don't have the skill-set??

If restorable, what would be your approach?

Thank you
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File Type: jpg Mom_RT.jpg (88.7 KB, 61 views)
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  #2  
Old 03-05-2013, 04:34 PM
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crazyfly1 crazyfly1 is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

Hi Bexar, welcome! The photo is definitely restartable. Since your problem is with the face could you crop just Mom and then repost her or maybe post the full size image at someplace like photobucket and give us the link? This would make it much easier to see and work on. Thanx.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:46 PM
bexar bexar is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

I'll crop just the head and repost!

Thanks
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:53 PM
bexar bexar is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

'Head shot' should be attached!

Please let me know if this helps in your evaluation!!
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File Type: jpg Mom_RT_v2.jpg (47.6 KB, 34 views)
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Old 03-05-2013, 07:38 PM
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crazyfly1 crazyfly1 is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

Hey Bexar, thank you for posting the head. But now she's blurry. LOL. I'm not sure but it looks as though PS has resized her head. If you go back to the original, and crop again but this time make sure all of the boxes in the crop tool bar are empty (instead of something like, width 5in height 2 in resolution 300). This may not be the problem but your original doesn't look blurry and at 600 ppi I'm assuming that you have a much larger original image.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:42 PM
bexar bexar is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

crazyfly1

Thank you for your patience in bearing with me while I try to sort this out!!

I think I know what has happened and hopefully have the correction attached.

The original image file 'mom_restart_v1 was' 1470x2544 pix, this was resized to meet the requirments of Retouch.

The resultant was submitted 'mom_RT' 426x800 pix, then you requested a 'head shot' this is where I think I went wrong in that I cropped the resized photo 'mom_RT' rendering a 600x607 pix and named the file 'mom_RT_v2'.

'mom _RT_v2' is the photo you report as being blurry.

This time I cropped the original photo 'mom_restart_v1' and named the cropped image 'mom_RT_v3. It is much sharper and detailed then the 'headshot' previously submitted.

Again, thank you for your help. I am so sorry if I am causing you any inconvenience.
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:14 AM
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crazyfly1 crazyfly1 is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

No worries. Is the v3 head you posted the original or a version that you've done some work to? I ask for 2 reasons; there is halo-ing around the hair that appears to me to be the result of sharpening and the lip has a vertical line running through it right at the middle. If sharpening was applied during the scan, re-scan. Use the default settings with no sharpening or any kind of adjustment applied.

Anyway, the way I started (and the way I always start a restore) was to go to 16 bit mode and then fix the contrast of each color channel in levels. Hold the alt or opt key on MAC while you slide and you will see a clipping mask so you can stop as soon as you start clipping darks.
I worked zoomed to 400%.
Then I used auto under the curves adjustment and checked the snap neutral midtones box. (BTW if you want to save the original patina you can take a sample before you begin and save it as a swatch, then you can always create a layer with that color and blend it back into the image.)
I don't feel like you have a real problem with the eyes. It seems that here left eye just has more contrast than her right. To correct that I added another layer with the blend mode set to overlay, I created a black mask by holding the alt key while clicking on the add mask icon at the bottom of the layers pallet. Then I just painted some darkness into the pupil on her right eye and then backed off the layer opacity until I felt they matched.
For the mouth (not sure what caused that, could have been a tear in the original or maybe the original was scanned in two haves) I healed the spot with the patch tool, then I used the lasso tool to make a selection around the left half of her mouth. Press control or command J to jump that selection to it's own layer. Use the Move tool "V" and up arrow once. That moved the selection to the right spot. Make a mask by clicking the mask icon and paint black to blend the selection with the underlying layer.
I then used the patch tool again to clean up what was left of the line.
Lastly I merged all that and made another copy of the background layer with the blend mode set to soft light and the opacity at 70. I made a black mask and painted in some of the shadows in the face and also in the hair. If you remember in the first step, the levels adjustment you saw the the shadows really couldn't be adjusted passed a point without clipping. But, in the final image this left a lot of the darks more grey than black so this last step adjusted for that.

All that is where I would start, took longer to type than it actually took to do. You could use the burn tool to gently paint some shadows in the face to bring out the nose a bit, for example.

I'd suspect you'll get some more suggestions from others here too. There are some amazing restoration people here. If you have any questions or want clarification on anything just ask.
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File Type: jpg Mom_RT_v3.jpg (49.0 KB, 35 views)
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:40 AM
bexar bexar is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

crazyfly1,

Wow, what a response. I can't thank you enough. Tomorrow I'm going to print your post and go through step-by-step. It will be a great learning experience for me. I sincerely appreciate the effort you have put into this project.

I don't think the image I posted is a version I have worked on, but not sure. I have the image and will rescan, but to my recollection the vertical line through the lip was in the original. The print is about 4.25" x 3". There is a possibility that I have tried to 'denoise' (I know I have on other versions), but this version is so noisy I don't think so. Like in my OP, the eyes and mouth had me beat!!

Again, thank you so much for giving me the steps. To me, your steps are invaluable. Of course, I will have to make some adjustments because I use Elements!

I'll check on the versions and get back to you tomorrow! Right now it is almost 5:00PM (in Australia) and I have to go feed horses!

Thank you so very, very much!!
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:13 AM
bexar bexar is offline
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Re: Help with this resto for a newbie!

crazyfly1,

I rescanned photo as .tiff (600dpi), then saved as .jpg and cropped. Nothing done in PS other than resaving as .jpg and cropping.

I certainly see the 'halo' effect in this, the vertical line at lip is not as prominent (but is in other versions).

Thanks again for your help.
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File Type: jpg mom_retouch_v2.jpg (64.6 KB, 25 views)
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