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Baby Washout

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  • Baby Washout

    Mike Marketello posted a picture of a baby in need of retouching on the retouching challenges page.

    I thought this was a good place to discuss it and offer solutions.

    I worked on this for about five minutes or so. I left it in black and white, though it could be easily colorized if so desired. I used only the blue channel, since it's the only one with facial detail. I duped it and used levels to increase the contrast, then lightened the now too-dark background and a bit of the hair area by erasing it with a big fuzzy eraser before merging the layers. Then I cloned the eyes and mouth from the original, since their detail had become lost in the shadows, then made the whole thing b/w once again and flattened it.

    It still needs some skin smoothing and final touches, but now at least you can see the facial details.

    Attached Files
    Last edited by Doug Nelson; 11-17-2002, 10:38 PM.

  • #2
    Hi, I played with this some and discovered a sequence that was new to me;

    Change to channels and select the blue channel, Image>Apply Image (Source: same file, Layer: Background, Channel: Blue, Blend: Multiply), then repeat Apply Image but change blend mode to Color Dodge. Detail in dark areas and eyes stayed open without blocking up and becoming too dark. Next I converted to Grey with only the blue channel selected to discard the other channels and added a curves adjustment to lighten skin too normal.

    Have yet to think this out as to why color dodge worked this way ... but I thought I would pass it on.

    Attached Files


    • #3
      Thanks, Roger, for a great tip! Will have to remember that one!

      Concerning the photo, it's been moved to Mike's member gallery...hope someone told him where to look so he can find us here and get the help he seeks.



      • #4
        Just love working with babies....

        Have a question about the missing pixels in his little face, how does one overcome this flaw?
        Attached Files


        • #5
          I guess it is the opinion of most that the photo will have to be desaturated, or converted to grey, then colorized.

          I was hoping to avoid that, not many pictures look realistic after they have been colorized, I was hoping for some adjustmnet layers and blending.


          • #6
            Mark, My personal choice to restore this photo would also be to choose the channel with the most detail (which is different than simply desaturating - it allows you to actually work with the most data available to build the detail back up) and colorize. But, since you requested a solution with adjustment layers and blending, this is what I came up with. Please note that I do not consider this a "finished" version. Simply a stepping stone to help you on your way to finishing it yourself.

            I did the following:
            1. Duplicated the background layer and changed the blending mode to multiply.
            2. Duplicated that layer (so I now had two multiply layers above the background layer.
            3. Used the eyedroppers in a Levels adjustment layer to set the black and white points. I also used the gray eyedropper to adjust the color cast in the midtones. I ignored the colors outside of the oval vignette. I was more interested in the baby's face.
            4. Used a reverse-S curve (adjustment layer) to reduce the contrast slightly.
            5. Used a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer to adjust the overall colors - set Hue to -10 and Saturation to +15.

            There appears to be some staining or uneven discoloration across the photo b/c the sweater looks white on the left and pink on the right. Also, the skin still looks blotchy to me and I would try to smooth out those colors. (Perhaps change to Lab mode and blur the a and b channels?) I wanted to increase the saturation in the face a bit, but when I tried that, it got even more blotchy and the color variations in the sweater looked awful. Selecting just the face would have helped with the sweater problem - but not the blotchiness.

            Of course, the outer portions that were behind the mat either need to be cropped or cloned over to get rid of that dreadful color.

            I'm sure others will have some different ideas.

            Attached Files


            • #7

              I intelehanced it to take out cast and then used curves to remove the rest and turn its white point neutral.( AS per Gurus) I recolored the background blue, the PJ yellow and the face and hands Bruce E5C298. Then I adjusted the curve line for depening and conrast. I know I left the hair out but it was fuzz and I liked it better making him U Brenner.
              Attached Files


              • #8
                I've Got Hair

                Your choice wit or without hair. The process removed it So with or without, ?
                Attached Files


                • #9
                  Repair attempt

                  Baby Repair

                  Here is my attempt at using Asiva to repair the burnt out spot.
                  I first desaturated the specific color components of the hotspot in the middle of the pic. Then applied a matching color to the surrounding 'unburnt' area to even it out.


                  • #10
                    I way-desaturated, then I used the red channel as my base. I ran curves to really darken it and was able to recover some detail in the face. I cleaned up the splotchiness in the red channel. I don't remember what order, but I blended the original with the cleaned up red-channel version, which had been converted to gray-scale. I also blended a desaturated, gaussian blured copy.

                    Then I separately masked the sweater, the face, the background, the foreground and applied curves. I chose yellow for the sweater since I couldn't tell if it's a boy or a girl.
                    Attached Files


                    • #11
                      Nothing like the morning light to point out a couple of black eyes. I lightened them up in this version.
                      Attached Files


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