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I could use some help on my first restore attempt

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  • I could use some help on my first restore attempt

    Hi Everyone,

    I attempted my first repair/restore project for a friend of mine. This is her grandmother. Unfortunately I am not pleased with the way it is coming out when printed.

    I had a lot of the background to try and clean up and when I print it out I can see visable signs of cloning. It was a very dark background it was difficult to find clean areas

    Maybe you can take a look at the picture and magnify it and you will see what I am refering to.

    If anyone has any suggestions as to how to improve upon it, I would appreciate it.

    Thanks in advance

    Attached Files

  • #2
    Here's a trick I use to see what's going on in the dark spaces. Create an adjustment layer of contrast / brightness and slide the brightness layer to the right until you can clearly see the details in the shadows. I actually use that trick alot because what looks black on screen is various shades of grey on print. Then when you are satisfied with the results you can delete the layer since it's only a working tool layer.
    As for your restoration, I think you did a great job. I would probably check the levels though. The shadows are very dark but the highlights could be pumped up a tad. Hope that helps you Carl. Beautiful girl.


    • #3
      Hi Carl...

      Looks like a pretty terrific job of cleaning up Grandma...

      If I read your post correctly, the problem you're asking advice on is essentially, "Now that I have Grandma retored, how do I get rid of the clone marks in the background that show up when I print?"

      It depends.

      It would help to know your "final vision" of the background... e.g., "all black" with no detail? Some sort of replacement background, e.g., Yankee Stadium (just kidding), a park-like setting? a sandy beach? something kind of soft, but not too abstract?

      Anyway, here's a quick hack that I made... I took your nicely restored Grandma and knocked out the black background to isolate Grandma on a separate layer. Then I made a copy of the original yellowed image and put in on a layer below restored Grandma for use as a background ("Blurred".) I desaturated layer "Blurred" and duplicated it ("Ground.") So, now we've got 3 layers:
      1. Grandma
      2. Blurred
      3. Ground

      I blurred the Blurred layer "a lot" w/Gaussian blur. Then I created a layer mask on the Blurred layer and airbrushed black at low pressure around her feet, so some "ground" would show through from the Ground layer.

      Anyway, hope this gives you some food for thought and generates some other ideas.

      Attached Files
      Last edited by DannyRaphael; 05-02-2002, 08:21 PM.


      • #4
        That turned out great. It really fits with the background perfectly. Looks like a magazine photo.


        • #5
          Hi DJ and Danny,

          Just had a chance to look at some of your comments and recommendations.

          DJ, thanks for the adjustment layer suggestion, I think it would have given me a better view as to what was really occuring in the background. On the original the shadow running down her left leg was almost identical to what you see, but I agree they are kind of dark.

          Danny, your right, I should have been a bit more descriptive as to what I was really hoping to do with the background. I need to talk to my friend and find out what she wants out of the picture first. Its funny because one of the first things I did when seeing the clone track problem was selected grandma, inverted and then tried to blur it out. I did not however use the layer technique you did using the original as the bottom layer. I like the way yours came out better. What I know you thought was the ground, was actually some kind of stains on the photo, but it does appears to be the ground in the original when you look at it on the screen. I may end up using your approach after discussing it with my friend.

          Thanks to you both for taking the time to help me out. If anyone else has any other suggestions feel free to chime in.

          Thanks - Carl


          • #6
            Hey Carl...

            Glad my .02 stirred some braincells.

            While using a single layer and selecting the inverse of the primary subject is a valid approach, I've learned (the hard way) that in general it works better for me to isolate the primary subject on a separate layer. This enables me to more easily muck with things in the background like opacities, blend modes, effects (especially gradients) at the individual layer level. Love to have that flexibility!
            Anyway, hope you plan to post the pic when you're finished. It will be fun to see the final result.

            Break a leg, as they say on Broadway!

            Last edited by DannyRaphael; 05-02-2002, 06:03 PM.


            • #7
              This thread has got me thinking a bit.

              My prepress background tends to make me think in halftone dots and percentages - so I often turn to the info palette. Simply swing the mouse around the image areas in question and look at the live readout of densities/values.

              I like the adjsutment layer trick to help with a visual clue, as you can miss things with the info palette approach. Combining both methods would seem to be a good appoach too, since the numbers will indicate the natural variation, while the adjustment layer preview exagerates things somewhat.

              Users who work in RGB only have one mix for pure solid black - 0r 0g 0b, but when working in CMYK there can be many different blacks (single K or K + various CMY mixes) which can lead to density problems if two 'blacks' of different physical or visual densites are used against or near each other.


              Stephen Marsh.


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