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Please Critique This One

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  • Please Critique This One

    Ok this is my 2nd post to this group. The first one was a plea for help with a really badly damaged old photo.

    I thought I would try another really bad one that means a lot to me. This photo is one of me and my cousins. We were all reallly close growing up.

    I am attaching the original photo. As you can see it is really washed out.

    I'm pretty new at Photoshop. I don't even know "layers" yet. But the main thing I did was to apply the "equalize" command to the photo. The problem was this made the sky alll gray.

    To get rid of the gray sky I used the magic erase command. It did a wonderful job of even erasing the gray patches between leaves.

    After that I used a lot of dodge and burning.

    Ok let me post this and I'll show you what I did.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    The Photo Redone

    Ok here is the photo reworked.

    My biggest disappointent is that one person in the photo, the fellow at the top of the ladder, I could not bring out the details of his face. That person is me! :-)

    Any suggestions there?

    Your comments are welcome.


    Doug Roberts
    Attached Files


    • #3
      This is a pretty difficult one to restore...even for someone who knows Photoshop really well!

      The first thing I notice is that the restoration has far too much contrast. I think you have lost a great deal of detail by pushing the contrast up so much. You might try using a Curves or Levels adjustment, rather than dodge and burn. Ed L has a great tutorial on basic Curves adjustments located here -

      Another tut. which may be of interest to you is this one by Jakaleena, which explains Layers in very clear terms -

      Another thing to keep in mind is the level of light hitting their faces. You did a great job of bringing the faces out but it looks a little unnatural given the light source (from behind) and level of contrast.

      I like the amount of detail you were able to back to the house and the reconstruction of the top of the swingset is very well done.


      • #4
        The details are there. You need a good scan to bring them out. Try and have it scanned on a drum scanner.


        • #5
          I'm not sure a drum scan is going to do much good unless he still has the original transparency...any decent flat-bed, with proper calibration, should bring out all the detail in the print.


          • #6

            Hi, you have done a very good job. You have got the look throughout the photo very consistant. I have done some quick layers adjustments to keep it a natural photo look with the detail that is in the photo just to show a different approach.

            You should definantly learn layers, jump in and play.

            The photo you did looks a little unreal with the clothing being so dark and faces so clear. But it is an excellent job, if that is the look you wanted you kicked _ It is pretty to look at with the smoother tones you have created with your technique, without all the noise/grain of the original.

            Descriptions are in the name of each layer, with the blending mode.

            Working from the background layer;

            -First the background layer (did nothing to it)
            -Curves to lighten bottom (used gradient to mask to just the bottom)
            -Levels layer in screen mode to lighten overall
            -Curves to raise contrast in bottom
            -Curves to darken to in multiply mode
            -Curves in multiply layer duplicated and backed off to 70% opacity
            -Curves to raise overall contrast now that all has about the same look
            -blank layer in overlay mode, white and black painted at 10% brush opacity to lighten and darken respectively

            Do the tutorials and then come back and look at this and it will start to make sense, I promise.

            Attached Files
            Last edited by roger_ele; 07-20-2003, 09:47 PM.


            • #7
              Thanks for the feed back

              Thanks for the feed back everyone.

              I'm going to rescan this one. I had just used the scaner's "auto" mode before.

              I know I did overdo the dodging some on the faces. :-)

              I will try using the suggestions to see what I can do. See if I can get this "levels" thing going.




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