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Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

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  #1  
Old 02-03-2007, 12:48 PM
mdavis mdavis is offline
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Unhappy Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

After an unsuccessful search for "mold", and thumbing through Eismann and Ctein for techniques, I came up dry. Here's my problem.

I scanned a 4x6 image (old formal portrait of two men in dark suits, sepia toned) into Photoshop. Although mold specks and blotches are barely visible on the original, the scanner seems to intensify the contrast of the mold blotches against the dark clothing. I tried both with and without digital ICE (using an Epson 4870 Photo scanner), and at different resolutions.

Dust and scratches filters work on very fine dust particles, not larger mold specks. I also tried the old Polaroid Dust and Scratches program to no avail. Using the healing brush does not work well. Does anyone have a suggestion on how to deal with this. I do not dare attempt to clean the original photo, as it is not mine.
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Old 02-03-2007, 12:55 PM
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Lasa Lasa is offline
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Re: Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

If you posted the image it would help..
Have you tried scanning it in at an angle? sometimes that helps..
You might have to heal or clone out the large stuff...
but without seeing the image its hard to say.

Lasa
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Old 02-03-2007, 01:21 PM
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CJ Swartz CJ Swartz is offline
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Re: Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

As Lasa mentioned, seeing the image helps. I find more "stuff" on my scanned images also than I can see on the originals, but mostly because I'm enlarging them and the dirt/dust/mold/etc. gets bigger along with everything else.
Cloning may be the best bet, but I'm really posting just to remind you about the answer that Sally Jacobs, the photo archivist, gave about the "real" mold on your original (link below for anyone interested) -- (I ran across it just today, and will be saving it in my notes). Just want to make sure you kill all those mold spores before they infect anything else.

http://www.retouchpro.com/forums/108101-post6.html
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:29 AM
mdavis mdavis is offline
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Re: Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

Well, I'll sheepishly answer my own question after some additional help and experimentation.

What I mistook for mold was actually silvering. As the scanner wand passes below the photo, the silver particles (not visible in direct light) reflected light, causing what appeared to be whiteish blotches and specks on the surface. Holding the photo at an extreme angle shows the reflective nature of the silvering, although it does not show light blotches.

The best solution I found was to use the Color Range command in Photoshop to mask the rest of the image and then reduce the brightness of those particles.

http://www.pbase.com/mldavis2/image/73904671
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Old 02-04-2007, 11:35 AM
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superkoax superkoax is offline
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Re: Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

nice picture...really love the way these people are standing and how they use their facial expressions...the guy to the right looks like a doll, the same for the woman in the middle and the guy with dark mustach is smiling abit(not common back then),,,I would love to do some new stuff surrounding these types of photographies, but where to get props/clothing is difficult...maybe a theathre or something...hmmm...


Gerry
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Old 02-05-2007, 07:24 PM
mdavis mdavis is offline
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Re: Light blotchs (mold) on scanned photos

This is actually a very old picture, not my own. The poses and faces are quite unique, I agree.
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