I have a wallet pic of an old flame that I would like to clean up and make bigger. This picture has several problems, size being one of them. But, the problem I've had the most trouble with is the blotching. She has frekles on her nose and she is a little sunburnt, and has makeup trying to cover it up.
The pict seems to have a stain or something that has removed the gloss in parts. Then, there is a crappy lighting and low camera angle to deal with (high school pic). It also has little black and white pixel spots and pixels of different color that stand out from the surrounding pixels.
I don't like using the median trick for the skin as it doesn't look real afterwards. I've tried using the lasso tool and then doing select>color range and then doing curves, but I can't seem to get a blotchy area cleaned up without making another blotchy border.
I have photoshop 5.5, so I was wondering what plan should I have in retouching this photo. What are the steps in retouching a photo like this, do you want to repair the blotches over the graininess first? Remove or make the color and contrast correct first?
If you have a favorite book to learn from, I would like to know the title.Any suggestion will be welcomed.