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I tried but...

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  • I tried but...

    Hello all.. I realise this is my first post and i feel a bit cheeky asking but if you have the time i would love to see what you guys could do with it.The image is of my nan and grandad, My grandad died just after the war so i would love to get this pic restored for myself as i never met him and of course for my nan.

    Ive attached three images .the first is the original and the other two are my attempts , ive been using photoshop for about a year and this is my first attempt at trying to bring an old image back to life

    ive tried using blurring and contrast to try and bring the features back but i dont really know what im doing so any guidance also appreciated

    Attached Files
    Last edited by ozonew4m; 01-02-2006, 05:45 PM.

  • #2
    ozonew4m, welcome to RetouchPRO

    That's quite a difficult image you got there! You're going to need some tools more advanced than just blurring and contrast....

    - There is an almost horizontal pattern superimposed, maybe from the paper texture, maybe from scanning. There is a way to diminish that texture without sacrificing the image details by using the FFT filter. (rather advanced, maybe, but do a search around these forums and you'll find help);

    - After eliminating the lines there is a lot of noise. A good (Free) tool for eliminating noise is Neat Image (again, do a search and you will find);

    - This leaves some white specks, which can be treated by the Dust and Scratches Filter (search.............);

    - After this some general Levels correction and sharpening.

    Not a miracle but with the full-size image you may be able to come up with something better.

    Attached Files


    • #3
      Thank you byRo

      what youve done is pretty great... i will definately look into those pointers you gave me and have another go myself.

      what would be the process for lightening the image? I thought if i could make it a bit lighter i might be able to bring some of the facial features back

      thanks again


      • #4
        If you are using Photshop CS2 then the Highlight/Shadow filter works a treat.

        If not, then you could use the Screen technique.....
        - Duplicate the layer;
        - Make a luminosity mask by pressing <Ctrl><Alt> and <~> all together (you should now have "marching ants" around the lighter parts);
        - Press <Alt> and the "New Mask" button at the bottom of the layers palette. (the new mask is made from your selection, the <Alt> inverts the mask so that only the dark parts will be affected);
        - Set the blending mode of this layer to Screen and vary opacity to taste.
        On the image you posted here there isn't much information in the shadows, but maybe in the original you'll have better luck.


        • #5
          thanks again byRo

          My aunt scanned the image and sent it to me via email so this is all i have. I suspect she has compressed it in order to send it so perhaps it would be better to get my hands on the original and scan it myself.

          Ive been reading alot of the other threads and trying things out for myself, I had no idea that there was so many different techniques to aid in restoring an image, this place is fantastic with loads of info i can accumulate and digest.

          Whilst im waiting do you have any links handy to tutorials you think might be useful?



          • #6
            think the original would be best, hard to put back what is not there in the first place


            • #7
              Hi ozonew4m,

              Welcome to RP!

              Originally posted by ozonew4m
              ....perhaps it would be better to get my hands on the original and scan it myself.
              If possible, it would definitely be the best ...
              Beside the obvious problems, as already mentioned here, the lack of details prevent from achieving anything acceptable ....

              I tried too ..... but ....

              Have you already seen our Tutorials section?

              Being a maniac for finding details I wrote a couple of them on the topic:

              Enhancing Details In Unevenly Faded Pictures

              Balancing Shadows/Highlights

              Some of 'my' methods for Restoring/Retouching pictures.
              Attached Files


              • #8
                Hi ozonew4m Welcome to RP

                I had a go at this, but a rescan is the way to go here.

                I ‘Found’ a different mouth on the Woman. But it’s all a guess here.

                Attached Files


                • #9
                  It was worth the practice

                  Don't be discouraged. You can only work with what you have. This was very grainy, though I was able to clean it up a good bit. I also used a program called ReColored.

                  It will be interesting to see the work done on this.

                  Good Luck,


                  • #10
                    Another technique idea

                    Hi Ozone,

                    Often, after doing NR, a photo will have a residual haze. This is because the noise distribution is lopsided in the dark shadow areas of a photo--ie., it's biased towards white. This is especially true with your image. So a quickie way of removing that haze is the unsharp mask with largish settings--for example on your image I used radius 40 and strength 50).

                    The first attached image is after FFT pattern noise removal and random noise removal. The 2nd attachment after the unsharp mask.

                    Attached Files


                    • #11
                      First of all i would like to thank you all for your input and great contributions to this thread so..

                      thank you..

                      Whilst being here ive taken on board all of what you guys have said and also read through many of the tutorials and threads on this great forum and have learnt so much i cant begin to tell you how mush


                      i thought i would show you..

                      look at my attempt at the pic in the first post of the thread before i found this forum and my attempt after all the learning ive done. please let me know what you think

                      My aunt is coming with the original image next monday so hopefully i can get a better quality

                      anyway here it is... thanks guys
                      Attached Files


                      • #12

                        yes, you've come a long ways, baby this is one of those images that you could spend weeks on and feel like you never quite got it right. trust me, i know

                        i did give this one a shot. it's an interesting picture to practice with. all that grain/noise and shadow and dulled out areas makes for a challenge. given about a thousand hours of work, you might get it back to a true photographic quality... and then again, you might pull all your hair out and be wearing a straightjacket

                        hope your aunt likes it.

                        Attached Files