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Suggestions for stubborn texture problem

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  • Suggestions for stubborn texture problem

    Hello, I'm doing a restoration for a client and the orginal has a really stubborn texture that I can't get rid of. I did a little research and what was suggested was trying to apply descreen in the scanning process, and scanning the picture at an angle. Neither worked at all. I also read about doing a copy negative, either traditional or digital. I just made several attempts at a digital copy negative with my nikon coolpix 4500 but it's too sharp, the texture is quite obvious. The only thing I have been able to do is put the digital camera in manual focus and deliberately set it slightly out of focus. This softens the image overall, making the texture less evident, though it is still there. The softness I think is at an acceptable level, but there's still going to be hours spent with the healing brush with the amount of texture there.

    Has anyone had luck doing traditional copy negs with highly textured photos? I guess I can bring it into work tomorrow and try that.

    Anyone have any other suggestions on some quick fixes for really stubborn texture? I have about ten other restorations that I need to get done in the next two weeks and if I can't find a better solution than a lot of cloning, I'll be working on nothing but this order for ages.

  • #2
    Can you post a sample? It would be helpful to see what you're trying to deal with...


    • #3
      It would be great if she was half-serpent.
      Attached Files


      • #4
        - a soft light (open shade? coming from behind you / over your shoulder will at least not "rake" accross the image and accent the texture

        - polarizing filters over the lights and over the camera lens, oriented so that reflected light is not seen through the camera ( I know this works with film - I don't know if there is any reason why this wouldn't work with digital). Polarizing filter material is available in sheets.

        - you can place the original under water, photograph it at an angle with a black card where the reflection off the surface of the water shows and adjust perspective afterward

        - if the original can stand it you can coat the surface with a thin coat of vaseline - fills in the texture the same as the water does - been years since I used that so I don't remember ... remove with rubbing/denatured alchohol?



        • #5
          Please don't coat your client's photo with vaseline
          Learn by teaching
          Take responsibility for learning


          • #6
            sorry, only with thier permission after the best copy has been obtained to preserve the image ... where this comes in handy in the photo industry is older color wallets (it's a plastic base resin paper) that has been texturized by the original photographer to discourage copying - but now the photographer and/or negs are no longer availible.


            • #7
              More to get discussion going on this subject than offering useful advice, I ran an FFT pattern removal routine on the red layer alone, then d/s filter.

              FFT (Fast Fourier Transform) has a lot of potential for restorations, but it's complicated (math and all), and there's no inexpensive plugin that I've found (I used Fovea Pro, which could probably justify its expense for a busy shop).

              If anyone wants to pursue the research on this, start a thread just for FFT.
              Attached Files
              Learn by teaching
              Take responsibility for learning


              • #8
                Receintly I had some pictures from the early 70's that were printed on paper that was very textured resulting in the same problem (I think). I scanned them at a very high resolution and when scaling them down the problem was much improved; and when printed, it was all but gone. Hope this helps....


                • #9
                  Alien Skin ( Image Doctor JPEG Repair: two passes.

                  Pass one:
                  • Remove Artifacts 100
                  • Blur Edges 20
                  • Add Grain 0

                  Pass two:
                  • Remove Artifacts 100
                  • Blur Edges 20
                  • Add Grain 15
                  Attached Files


                  • #10
                    I used Neat Image to remove most of the texture. Then applied Dust & Scratches to remove the remaining tick marks. Channel Mixer to remove most of the red ink dots (used mostly the red channel) and applied the Film Grain filter.

                    Alceria, one thing you don't mention is whether you need to enlarge the restored version larger than the original size? If so, the texture pattern becomes much more of an issue. Often times, because you work on an image that is 300dpi on screen, what you see on screen almost disappears when you go to print it - IF you print at the same size that you scanned. The problem occurs when you try to enlarge it - then the texture is enlarged as well.

                    I had a textured photo like this that was 3x3" and the client wanted it enlarged to 8x10". The texture was more of a water color paper though - and I chose to print it on water color paper so that the paper choice complemented the texture which still remained in the photo. I think it would have looked awful printed on glossy or even semi-gloss photo paper. But, because I printed it on a paper with similar texture to the original, it worked.

                    Good luck!

                    Attached Files


                    • #11
                      Nice work all. Interesting to see all the different aproaches.
                      Mine was sort of convolued, I attacked on problem at a time which sometimes created others.
                      On the basic texture problem, a started with Select color range, to isolate the highs in the texture, and adjusted with brightness/contr. then a few curves adjustments, a bit of healing tool, and a desaturation..
                      Attached Files


                      • #12
                        Thanks for all the replies. I'm impressed by the wealth of knowledge here, I have a feeling I'm going to become a regular. Image Doctor looks like the easiest fix w/ the best results. I'm going to download the demo and probably buy the full version when I have the money.

                        The image is 2.25 x 3 and putting it underwater or covering it with vaseline is not an option at all with a client's original. It will be printed to 5x7 when it's completed. Printing on different surface is a good idea and something I'll file away in case it comes up again, but right now I'm limited in my means of printing. We were using a kodak picture maker ::shudder:: but we recently got a digital machine at my lab so we are making silver halide prints.

                        I shot copy negs today at work and the texture was showing up even using a copy stand with blinders to control the light. There was no visible glare when I shot the pictures but the texture is apparent. It's just *bumpy* period. But I think this Image Doctor thing will do the trick.

                        Thanks to everyone for their input!



                        • #13
                          Oh, and I forgot to ask. Are there any other 3rd party filter packages I should look into for restoration work? Right now I just use straight Photoshop with no extras. Anything that could save time would be great.


                          • #14
                            Doug - You are right, in this age of digital techniques resorting to the more radical techniques of pre-digital is not appropriate or necessary, though I hope some found it interesting.

                            alceria - If you are not using polarizing filters on your lights and on the camera lens I highly suggest that you give it a try. The difference will be subtle in some cases, and dramatic in others, especially when copying an original that shows a lot of silvering in the dark areas.


                            • #15
                              This type of moire is a big pain in the butt. I'm really curious about this chaos thing Doug's mentioned called FFT (Fast Fourier Transform). I can't figure it out. But I think basically you have to make some very peculiar selections.
                              This was done by putting some wild curves into the original and then copy/pasting this into its own alpha channel and then using it as a selection. Then apply the selection and use blur tools and degrain filters, with some texture and noise, then some dodge and burn.

                              Attached Files


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