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Photo Restoration Repairing damaged photos

Analysis exercize

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  #1  
Old 09-05-2001, 06:50 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Analysis exercize

OK, this is an experiment, so bear with me. This could blow up, peter out to nothing, or actually be kinda cool (which is my personal prediction).

I've chose pretty much randomly one of the archive photos. I haven't gone back to check and see who donated it, but whoever it was can act as both client and restorer.

Here's the idea:

Look at the photo. Don't open it in your image editor and analyze it, just look. Look closely.

Now, tell us, as a restorer, what do you see? What's wrong with the photo? What's right? What's damaged? What's salvageable? What would you recommend to the client?

Look at this photo with your restorers eye, as if it was in your hand and not on a computer screen. Together we'll deconstruct the analysis process, build a composite description, and (hopefully) give us all something to think about the next time we start a new restoration.
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Old 09-05-2001, 07:53 AM
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Good idea Doug. What I see is a few small cracks/scratches, a missing piece on the left side of photo, a bent corner, stains (some more noticeable than others), detail is obscured due to discolaration/dirt, and the heavy shadows on the eyes. I think all of the above can be improved or completely eliminated, with the possible exception of the heavy shadows. It's hard to see whether or not anything can be done to bring the detail out. I do think it's worth a try to see if detail can be brought out in the area of the eyes. It looks like there might be something to work on, but I wouldn't know until I tried. Other than that, I think the photo is in pretty decent shape. This should prove to be a good exercise.

Ed (BTW, it's not mine)
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Old 09-05-2001, 11:08 AM
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Neat idea. Here goes;
Overall the photo looks pretty good to me. Tone and contrast need adjusting, the discolored areas would probably be easy to fix using a combination of clone tool and masking>drag duplicate aresa of good data over areas of bad. I would crop to the inside border of the photo and judiciously experiment with dust/scratch,despeckle and dodge/burn tools to clean up any lingering imperfections. Then Quit. I would explain all this to the client as well as pointing out that not every imperfection needs removing if doing that would compromise the believability of the restored image. Then I would return to my cellar and make busy noises, hoping that by so doing I would be spared the indignity of engaging in meaningful and productive work. Tom
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Old 09-19-2001, 12:24 AM
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OK, not as large a turn-out as I'd hoped, but this is an experiment after all.

So, let's get more specific now:

Where would you put the highlight point? The shadow point? (no cheating by opening it in an editor).

How would you crop? Would you crop? What's the final compostion? Any alterations?

In your mind what's the tone of the finished image? B/W? Sepia? Greenish-blue-gray? Colorized? Something else?

How would you characterize this for pricing purposes? A light job? Medium? Heavy? Miracle?

What other pre-visualizations do you have?
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Old 09-19-2001, 08:31 PM
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Hi All.

First, highlite pointon white sleeve shadow point on her belt.

Next, as I would tell the client, the subject is very interesting so I would crop out much of the busy background.

Definitively a sepia.

I would consider this a light job.
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Old 09-20-2001, 07:39 AM
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Highlight point, on collar, Black point on belt, Crop to just inside missing portion of photo on left, no alteration other than minor scratch removal--Possibly sepia tone but unless print was platinotype of some other type with original tint I would probably leave it BW. Class as easy job. Tom
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