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  • Wedding

    Ok, Greg - I'll be the guinea pig. This was a real rush job I had this weekend. One of my students wanted this pic of her parents retouched/restored for her parents 25th wedding anniversary. My mission
    • * Remove the lady on the right
      * Clean up the pic
      * Try to get it to A4 in size

    I was given a badly mildewed and scratched negative as well as a badly yellowed 9x13cm photo. From the quality of the scan, the picture was taken with a point and shoot type camera.

    I decided that the scan from my Epson FilmScan 200 scanner (attached) of the negative was better than the scans that I made with an Epson 2400 (will show that elsewhere).
    Attached Files

  • #2
    My result using PSP8 beta 7:
    • 1. cloned out the lady on the right and fixed up the worst of the mildew blemishes. Because the veil draped on the grass showed a purple cast, I left the residual of the lady on the right under the veil over the tree.
      2. duplicated the clone layer ran a "salt and pepper" filter on it to remove the smaller blemishes.
      3. added a mask layer to the "salt and pepper" layer to bring back the definition in the faces from the layer below.
      4. duplicated the layer and did a light sharpening (because of the poor quality of the original, the image was very grainy).
      5. duplicated the layer and set it to multiply. added a mask layer (hide all) and painted with white to try and get some definition in the dress - unfortunately this does not show up in the attached jpeg.

    Ok. I'm up - don't be shy now!
    Attached Files


    • #3
      I forgot to add that between steps 3 and 4 I enhanced the whites of the eyes with the hue and saturation tool.


      • #4
        Al -- Thanks for going first.

        You did a good job, and on a tight deadline. You certainly took care of the mildew and scratch damage and elimination of the "other woman". (I haven't looked at it zoomed in enough to look for the damage that Chuck saw -- I'll leave that to better eyes.) Your cloning appears invisible to me -- good work.

        My nitpick is leaving the majenta color cast in the wedding dress. If you select the bride (I used a copy of the Blue channel and used Levels to make it a better selection. and it's still a bit rough -- but it can be refined easily enough with a bit of time ), then you can use Hue/Saturation to reduce or eliminate the color. Or you could use the Sponge Tool set to Desaturate. Did I misunderstand about your reason for leaving it majenta?

        I'm interested in the results of your scanning that you mentioned -- you said you would post more when you had time -- I'm not familiar with the Filmscan 200, and would like to see the differences.

        It takes a BIG person to volunteer first -- we know you EARNED your BigAl name.
        Attached Files


        • #5
          Al - I was surprised when I opened the scanned image, by your description I expected it to be worse, so my guess is you made adjustments for the scan to produce a good result (I am not scanner savey).

          And for a last minute can you fix this image up for me -- the end results are excellant.

          I down loaded all three versions - original, yours, and Chucks.

          I think all of Chucks suggestions are applicable to the image, and I will agree with CJ's question in leaving so much of the blue in veil.

          The only other suggestion I can add here is the cropping, I agree with Chuck that the tree is distracting, but will add that the sky is very distracting also. The original image looks off balance with the tree and the sky. Chuck you mentioned "I could not preserve the .8 proportion ratio that I like to shoot for when doing a crop" not sure what you meant --- so I may be pointing out what you already did.

          I would change the crop in an attempt to balance the subject with the back ground - staying with a more portrait look.
          Last edited by TwinbNJ; 06-03-2003, 04:59 PM.


          • #6
            OK everyone, I've declared an end to my "short break." I'm still really busy, so my participation will still be limited for a while yet, but I just couldn't stay away! I'm hopelessly addicted.

            Al, I like what you've done here. Great job on removing that woman! I don't know that I would have noticed the shadow on the left side of the rock, but now that Chuck has pointed it out, it does look "off." (Thanks a lot Chuck! )

            I agree with CJ and Jill who questioned leaving blue/purple tint in the veil. Even though the color of the veil on the grass (conveniently!) matched the veil where it was in front of the woman who was removed, it still looks out of place to me. I'm not sure my simple fix exists in PSP, but I simply added a Hue/Saturation layer and eliminated most of the saturation on both the blue and the cyan channels. (It was extremely convenient that for this picture the dress was the only thing that held any blue or cyan!) Another way to fix it might be to use a white paintbrush in color mode and color over the blue areas. (Being careful not to go outside the boundaries of the dress/veil.)

            I'm not sure if the damage that Chuck sees in the grass is actually damage or something that was lying in the grass. Regardless it is slightly disctracting and since you were asked to "retouch" as well as restore, I might have cloned it out.

            I find it difficult to see the couple's faces, so I tried using Katrin Eismann's "fill flash" technique to lighten the shadow areas in the image. (I tried a contrast mask but was not happy with the results of that at all!) Then adjusted a little further with levels and curves to get a good contrast.

            The last thing I want to mention is the crop that you chose. I like the vertical crop. Strangely enough, I don't find the tree distracting, but I would have lessened the amount of grass on the bottom. I tried this and immediately ran into trouble with the roof line cutting into the top of the image (on your original). But, by coming in on the right just a little, I was able to lessen the amount of grass, lowering the couple in the photo a little to help make them look more "anchored". Having them perfectly centered vertically in the photo doesn't look quite right to me.

            Of course, it's easy for me to say all of this after the fact - not having been under the gun with a rush job! Given the condition of the print your student had, I imagine she was very happy with your results!



            • #7
              Before I comment on the image I wanted to say a couple of things...

              First- Thanks to Al for being our first victim...umm, I mean volunteer! ...and thanks to everyone who has commented so far. This is a great first critique and will serve as a fine example for anyone new to this area of RetouchPro.

              Second - I am going to add one more item to the guidelines about altering or fine tuning images that users present for critique - It will probably be best (especially with new users) to ask first before uploading any changes you make to someone's image. If they are a regular and you know they will not mind (such as with this thread) it's ok...but some people can be very protective of images and might take offense to anyone else changing or altering the image. Keep that in mind when you see an unfamiliar face posting here (or anywhere really!)...a quick "is it ok to make changes to your image?" could prevent a big argument.

              Now on to Al's image...

              1. The fact that this was a "rush" job makes the work you did all that more impressive! I opened it in Photoshop and brightened the image in an attempt to find clone tracks or other areas that might lead me to believe the image had been altered...I found very little evidence of that. Her dress is pretty well burned out. I suspect that you pulled every ounce of detail you could from that negative and there was still no info in the highlight areas!

              2. I think you made a good decision to crop where you did...the tree was like a big brooding object hanging over the couple. I agree with Jeanie that the amount of grass is still a bit bothersome...but given the choice (and keeping the A4 size in mind) I would opt for the grass over the monster tree!

              3. As others have mentioned, it seems like a bit more of the tree should be showing through the veil...I understand the reasoning for leaving it as it was, but I think the veil would be thinner along her arm and so a bit more green would show thorugh. (then again, I have never worn a wedding dress, so what do I know! ) I ran into the same decision when I retouched my parent's wedding photo. I changed the background and having a bit of the new background show through the veil really helped complete the people stopped saying "that looks like you cut them out!" ...not that yours looks cut out by any means, but it would be interesting to see what it would do for the image.

              4. This might have been due to time constraints...but why not do an overall Levels / color correction to the entire image? It's not an easy one to correct but if you could bring some green back to the tree and perhaps increase the contrast and correct the skin tones a tad more, it would help bring the image back to life.

              Overall, other than some tweaking of colors and perhaps adjusting a few areas, this is a fantastic restoration/retouch. The fact that it was a rush job makes it even more impressive. Well done Al!

              P.S. Just read over Chuck's post again and I think it might help at times to request details of images. It's hard to get a lot of detail from a 100k image and posting details of certain key areas can help.


              • #8
                Thanks for comments Guys. You've been busy while I've been sleeping

                Chuck, I agree that the grass looks iffy (it looks worse on the big pic). However, my client (!!) wanted to use it for a message to her folks. She wanted it written in silver ink, and there was no way that I could get a decent silver color from within PSP, so I recommended that she try and find a calligrapher to do it on the print.

                I also agree with everyone about the background as a whole. If I had a bit more time, I would have cut the couple out and pasted them on a studio backdrop (unfortunately, my previous attempts at that haven't been too realistic - as Greg said the "cutout look", so I decided to skip it with this one because of time).

                As far as boosting the colors was concerned I was worried that the wedding dress would get blown away even further. I felt that (probably mistakenly) that the dark background was offset reasonably well by the couple.

                I will definitely look into the suggestions that I try and remove the purple/cyan cast in the veil, but one thing that worries me is that the definition I put back into the dress with the multiply layer mask (which unfortunately isn't too visible here), was also a cyan color.

                Thanks again everyone. Thumbs up to you.


                • #9
                  one thing that worries me is that the definition I put back into the dress with the multiply layer mask (which unfortunately isn't too visible here), was also a cyan color.

                  Al, you should be able to desaturate the area without losing the definition, right? The definition is in the luminosity, not the color. Or perhaps I'm not fully understanding what the problem is since I can't see the layers. (A distinct possibility.)



                  • #10
                    Ok, Jeanie good one - I'll try a selection on the dress/veil and have a shot at desaturating it. It will be interesting to see what the tree/grass looks like under the veil if it's desaturated.


                    • #11
                      Sorry to be a thread hog here, but I forgot to mention this in my earlier post. Chuck mentioned running a USM, and Greg recommended using levels to boost the colors. The problem with the original image was that the grain was already at a pretty high level after the scan. I can't say anything about the film as I was only given the negative of the one image, so I don't know what ASA or even what make of film it was. I have a feeling that it was 400ASA because of the grain that I found straight off. As you all know, both USM and levels/curves adjustments boost the grain, which was one of the reasons why I only used a very light USM.

                      The horror for fixers - P&S cameras with high ASA films often give clients images that they treasure most. Not to mention cheap prints which turn red after a year.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BigAl
                        Ok, Jeanie good one - I'll try a selection on the dress/veil and have a shot at desaturating it. It will be interesting to see what the tree/grass looks like under the veil if it's desaturated.
                        Al, I just checked my version of PSP7 and it appears that you can run the Hue/Sat adjustment layer on individual color channels just like in PS. The nice thing about that (at least in this picture) is that you don't need to make a selection to desaturate the dress! Try a hue/sat adjustment layer and work on the blue and cyan channels. (There is more blue than cyan in the veil, so you might want to start there or you won't notice much of a difference.)

                        I don't think it looks bad against the grass or tree with the veil desaturated, but if you want it to be a little more "see thru", I would select a color from the grass and tree, then paint over veil on a separate layer set to color blending mode, and adjust the layer to a low opacity, paying attention to where the veil is bunched and where it's not b/c more color will show through from the background where there's just a single layer of the veil and not so much will show through where there's more fabric.

                        All this said, I'm thinking like I do in PS and trying to figure out how to do it in PSP, so perhaps there's a better way that I don't know about!



                        • #13
                          Upon opening the picture, two things struck me instantly.

                          What I noticed first was the flatness and reddish tinge to the tree and entire background, and a yellowish dead color in the grass, making the photo look discolored/old in general.

                          Second, I noticed that the couple was pretty far off-center and there seemed to be way too much tree and grass. If you have to choose, and here you do, I'd choose to trim off the left side of her train so the photo could be cropped to center them and get rid of the unattractive grass and tree.

                          Here is the fix I tried for color correction. First I ran auto-levels and faded it almost halfway to get out the excess cyan and blue it added. Then I used color balance with the "preserve luminosity" box NOT checked, adding about 20% more yellow to highlights, and about 10% green to midtones, and about 5% cyan to shadows. This killed the excess magenta in his suit and her gown, and warmed up the gown shadows. Last I increased saturation of greens and reds but not blues and magentas.

                          Attached Files
                          Last edited by ; 06-06-2003, 02:10 PM.


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