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  • Need help with photo

    I have no idea where to begin fixing the attached photo. It is one of only a few that I have of my grandfather.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    I gave your photo a go, but please remember I am fairly new to retouching. I am sure you will get some very good advice from people who have much more experience than I do.
    Glad you posted it, I had fun trying different techniques.

    I'm sorry, I meant to try to explain what I did. I duplicated your image and took the move tool, and using the arrow keys, I nudged it over a few pixels to help eleminate the pattern. Made it look blurred so I duplicated the background again,layed it on top of those layers and played with the different blend modes and opacity until I got something clearer. I can't remember all the steps, but I did flatten and kept overlaying the result. Then sharpened and cloned.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by mead; 08-12-2004, 07:16 PM.


    • #3
      Wow that's quite the texture to work with. I don't have time to work with the image now, but I did run it through Neat Image (they have a free demo program you might like to try). I set the mode to remove all noise and tweaked the settings to bring back some detail.

      Steps to help you get started:

      1. Remove texture. Some scanners have settings to help with this, and there are several plug-in programs out there. I used the free Neat Image demo. You can also experiment with PhotoShop's despeckle, median filter, dust & scratches or guassian blur filters.

      2. Correct Color with Levels, Curves or Selective Color Adjustment layers

      3. Remove blemishes, spots, creases and so on with healing brush or clone brush

      4. Apply USM (unsharp mask filter) or High Pass Filter to sharpen the lost detail

      Attached Files
      Last edited by T Paul; 08-13-2004, 08:47 AM.


      • #4
        How To Remove Moire Patterns

        Scanning photos printed on textured paper can produce a moire-like pattern. This pattern happens when the screen pattern of your original image gets magnified or conflicts with the scan. All printed materials will show some sort of screen pattern after scanning. Basically, the lower the print quality, the more intense the pattern.

        Most scanning software offers a built-in descreen option to correct this problem before passing the image to your editing software. However, if your scanner does not have a descreen option, or if you don't like the results, try using the filters in Photoshop. The specific kind of filter that you will use will depend on the quality of the pattern. Median Noise or a Gaussian blur will take care of most Moire patterns. The choice of radius usually corresponds to the degree of pattern, but usually 1 or 2 will work. The following are some filters you can use to eliminate Moire patterns:

        Filter>Noise>Median (set a radius)
        Filter>Blur>Gaussian (set a radius)

        One suggested technique:

        1. Scan the image at a resolution approximately 150-200% higher than what you need for final output.

        2. Go to Filter > Noise > Median.

        3. Use a radius between 1-3. Typically the higher the quality of the source, the lower the radius can be.

        4. Go to Image > Image Size (Image > Resize > Image Size in Elements) and resample to the desired image size and resolution using the bicubic resampling option.

        5. Make sure you are zoomed to 100% magnification.

        6. Go to Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask. Exact settings will depend on the image resolution, but these settings are a good starting point: Amount 50-100%, Radius 1-3 pixels, Threshold 1-5. Use your eyes as the final judge.

        If you still see a pattern after applying the Median filter, try a slight gaussian blur before resampling. Apply just enough blur to reduce the pattern.

        If you notice halos or glows in the image after using Unsharp Mask, go to Edit > Fade. Use settings: 50% Opacity, Mode Luminosity. (Not available in Elements.)

        More Tips
        Try scanning at a resolution higher than you need and then sample the image down. Often the resampling process fudges the image data enough to remove the patterning.

        Apply the Despeckle filter (under Noise in the filters menu). This will often yield acceptable results. It has the advantage that it does retain some edge information.

        Apply the Despeckle filter to one or more colour channels. (Often one channel will have more patterning than another)

        Apply the Median filter (under Noise) to one or more channels, specifying just enough radius to remove patterning. Some people use Gaussian Blur instead of Median. Many, however, prefer the edginess you get from Median and believe it yields a sharper-looking result.

        Sometimes scanning with the image at a slight angle on the scanner bed then straightening the image in your editing program will also help reduce moire patterns.
        Last edited by T Paul; 08-12-2004, 09:48 PM.


        • #5
          Excellent stuff TP! I ran the image thru Neat Image set to Auto then went over the image again with a low opacity blur tool brush. Brought back a bit of detail with some Luminosity and Unmask Sharpening.
          BTW Mead, I like your approach and will play with it more to see what I can come up with.

          Attached Files


          • #6
            Thank you, all

            Thank you to all the people that have helped me with this photo. I have gotten some really good advice, and I think the photo looks much better. I am especially grateful, because as I said originally, this is one of only a small few pictures that I have of my grandfather. He died in 1950, as a result of his wounds from WWII.


            • #7
              We'd love to see your final results!



              • #8
                Well, here it is

                I am sure others can probably do better, but this is my first time.
                Attached Files


                • #9
                  I had a picture that was in pretty bad shape one time. I don't know anything about editing photos and I ended up having work on it. It turned out better than I thought possible...and the cost was minimal.


                  • #10
                    user several filters to take out scratches - cloned and sharpened
                    Attached Files


                    • #11
                      Un-blur mask

                      There´s so much texture in this image that the trade-off in Neat Image between noise and sharpness gets a bit heavy.
                      So I tried to get rid of some texture before sending it off to Neat Image.
                      I used a blurring process which is the exact opposite of the Un-Sharp Mask, which in a stroke of creative genius I named the "Un-Blur Mask" - just hope someboby has done this before and given it a better name.
                      Here are my steps:
                      - Grayscale -
                      1) Make a good grayscale copy [gray1], in the 30-225 range: gradient map / curves;
                      - Un-Blur Mask -
                      2) Copy the grayscale layer [gray2]: ctrl-J;
                      3) Sharpen [gray2]: USM 100%/0.5/0;
                      4) Invert [gray2]: ctrl-I;
                      5) Adjust opacity of [gray2] until dimples disappear;
                      (everything´s pretty gray now)
                      6) Make a Levels adjustment layer to put back into the 15-240 range;
                      7) Do fine adjustment on the opacity of [gray2]; click on opacity, adjust with arrows;
                      (no dimples now, just noise)
                      - Neat Image -
                      8) Take out noise with Neat Image - Don´t overdo it;
                      - Cleaning and Sharpening Grayscale -
                      9) Take out ´artifacts´ left over after Neat Image: Dust & Scratches/r2;
                      10) General Sharpening: using High-pass (radius 3);
                      11) General Sharpening again using High-Pass (backed off opacity a bit);
                      12) Improve contrast: USM 15%/100/0;
                      13) Final Sharpening: USM 100%/1/0;
                      - Color -
                      14) Set blend to Luminosity and mix back with the original image.
                      ...from here on standard retouching, which I didn´t do because it´s way past bedtime!

                      OK, so maybe I complicated things a bit?
                      Attached Files
                      Last edited by byRo; 08-23-2004, 09:19 PM. Reason: where´s the picture?


                      • #12
                        Awesome job! I've tried to follow your steps but lose it after your "Everything looks pretty grey" comment. In levels all I have is a small spike. Changing the values to 15 and 240 do little to change the greyness. Also, am I still suppose to be in inverse mode?



                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Duv
                          Changing the values to 15 and 240 do little to change the greyness. Also, am I still suppose to be in inverse mode?
                          Sorry, should have been a bit clearer.....
                          When I said "...put it back into the 15 to 240 range" I meant: slide the black and white triangles near to the middle spike, with <alt> pressed to get only a few clipped pixels, and on the scale bar below put minimum at 15 and maximum at 240.

                          Another neat trick is to put the opacity of the sharpened and inverted layer at 50%. That way you take out the image and leave only the texture. Then you can take the 'texture', invert it and blend back into the original (gray or colored) to take out the dimples. - Thought this would be better, but it wasn't. Not this time anyway.

                          Have fun,



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