Restoring old and damaged photos

Joined
May 9, 2008
Messages
2,510
Location
houston tx
Have bookmarked this page. Hope the Cafe keeps it.
I have many photos from the family, dating back into the 1880's and 1890's (most from 1910's and '20) and have many repairs needed.

Thanks!
 
Joined
May 1, 2005
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1,804
Location
Marlton, NJ
I just found this thread today (July 27) and am overwhelmed by the effort and creativity. I'm sure this will be useful. Thank you all, especially Tony.
 
Joined
Jan 15, 2010
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3,880
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UK
You're welcome John and I do hope that it may be of some help. Also belated thanks for the kind comments from Lyndee, Gale, John and Bill - I had only just noticed there were replies after my last post here
 
Joined
Jan 21, 2009
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Location
Colorado
Just found this thread and at a time I am scanning images that are 30-40 years old. I want to thank all of you but especially Tony, of course. I have already learned much that will help and hope to learn even more after re-reading this thread many more times.
 
R

Richard Jones

Guest
Pa.... I posted in the wrong part of the forum Under "Photo Repair" Please take a look. Rich.... climb to L20 on a heading of....... This is one area of PP that I find all consuming, to say it is my favourite pastime is an understatement. That said, I don't believe it's that easy to give precise instructions as there are many different styles of editing just as many computer uses have different ways of doing things. I have learned the hard way by experimenting and making lots of mistakes'

Every image I have restored presented its own unique challenges as did the sample I posted under Photo Repair, I'll post it here again.

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Mama B&A-PRINTlowres by Aeros4, on Flickr

The first image is a poster I did for a trade show, using a damaged photo of my wife's mother. It was recued from floating face down in a flooded basement after a typhoon in the Philippines. It was in such bad shape and I only had an 8MP Olympus to shoot it with. I was convinced it was worthless to try a rescue, but necessity is the mother of invention. The end result is shown bellow. If there is any interest I will post a detailed account of my MO.

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MaMa Severo-2 by Aeros4, on Flickr
 
Joined
Jun 12, 2007
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1,272
Location
UK
That is one of my favourite things in photography is restoring old cracked pictures. it is something that takes time but need not be done all at once. Seeing something restored does give a lot of satisfaction.

On getting it back to original size could be problematical though and old prints don't take to be digitally expanded more often than not. So my advice would be to concentrate getting rid of scratches/spots and blemishes more hat anything else
 
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Jun 12, 2007
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UK
one of my parents sadly no longer with us, I pulled back from an old picture

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R

Richard Jones

Guest
Pa...Not to worry, I did something goofy but fixed it. You have my post now. I noticed in hind-sight there was a lot of room for improvement on Mama’s face, so I took it further and cleaned up the pixilation and grain as shown in the crop bellow. I never cease to be surprised at what can be done in PP. For me it’s about experimenting and discovering.

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MaMa crop by Aeros4, on Flickr
 
Joined
Feb 7, 2005
Messages
1,027
Location
Annandale, VA
I really don't understand what you mean by this, Richard. Can you explain further?

That is an outstanding restoration, however.
It was a reference to my earlier comment about some PP experts skipping an awful lot assuming the readers know how to fill in the cracks. I suggested a flying metaphor about meeting me at a specific location in the air without explaining how to taxi, takeoff and fly the airplane. FL20= Flight Level 20 (20,000 ').

Rich
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
21,098
Location
SW Virginia
It was a reference to my earlier comment about some PP experts skipping an awful lot assuming the readers know how to fill in the cracks. I suggested a flying metaphor about meeting me at a specific location in the air without explaining how to taxi, takeoff and fly the airplane. FL20= Flight Level 20 (20,000 ').Rich
I understood that, Rich. This is the part I was confused by:

Pa.... I posted in the wrong part of the forum Under "Photo Repair"
 
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
3,944
Location
Chicago
I have never found anything that works as well as patience.

Sample original and work on a new blank layer so you can retouch the retouch as required.

As an aside, it takes me 45 minutes to clean up scanned film, film that printed to 11x14 and required no print spotting.
 
Joined
May 27, 2005
Messages
399
Location
Weaverville, California
Tony,
Your work displays an obvious insight into the mysteries of the inner workings of Photoshop and the results are inspirational.
I'm thinking (with what's left of my mind) that building a time machine and going back to reshoot the photo to get a good digital file may be less involved.:confused:
 
R

Richard Jones

Guest
This thread was started a long time ago, but I just got around to having a go at the bearded man.

 
R

Richard Jones

Guest
That's excellent, Richard.
There is always that one extra speck to deal with. You also did an excellent job Pa as I can tell from your comments, this is not the kind of work you enjoy, which makes your effort even more impressive as it took a lot of self discipline to stay with it. These restorations can be daunting as was the one I did from the Philippines. The hardest part is making the start, then comes the standup improvisation. Necessity is the mother of invention.
 

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