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Decent image from photocopy?

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  • Decent image from photocopy?

    I have a scanned image of a photocopy of an old photo which I would like to restore and turn it into a reasonable image if possible. Having no access to the photocopy, nor the original photo I am not sure whether the damage is on the photocopy or the original.

    Is it just a pipe dream or is it possible to do restore this image into something reasonable? I have looked at some other threads here on RetouchPro about restoring from photocopies and have seen some amazing results. However before I waste too much time on this photo, especially as I am little more than a novice, I would appreciate advice as to whether or not it is worth the effort. The photo is of my g-g-g-grandfather who dies in 1860.

    Thanks in advance

    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: Decent image from photocopy?

    I think the problem here is the fact that the scanned image comes from a photocopy.

    Photocopies tend to produce soot and whitewash images which can be seen here. There is virtually no image detail in the highlights, midtones and shadows which I would guess would have been seen in the original print. Without this detail to work on your job will be made much more difficult and time consuming to produce a good job.

    This is likely to be an important family image that needs to be preserved for future generations therefore it is worthwhile IMO to see if it is possible to borrow the original print or at least get a quality scan made by the owner of the print.

    If this is all you have to work on without access to the original then you could certainly clean up the damage areas using existing information and may get a result that you find acceptable.


    • #3
      Re: Decent image from photocopy?

      Thanks Tony,
      Unfortunately I don't know who has the original or if it even still exists. I found the photocopy in my deceased aunt's family history records, but unfortunately it has now been lost. I did get a scanned copy from a photocopy from another family history researcher, but her copy is no better than mine and likewise she doesn't know who has the original.

      Thanks for your help though. I might play around with and see what I can do. How would you recommend tackling the the tears etc?


      • #4
        Re: Decent image from photocopy?

        Quick play with the Patch tool mainly and Clone tool. Gradually creep up on the tears repairing small areas first and working towards the larger areas sampling the good data to replace the bad.

        Just a very quickly made example working on the jacket using Patch and Clone - Click on the attachment and wait a few seconds for image to change
        Attached Files


        • #5
          Re: Decent image from photocopy?

          I agree with Tony, any image from a family history is worth restoring and preserving. While as he said the damage is extensive and quality low, even a significantly improved version of this would have great sentimental value.


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