Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Unexpected job of the day

I suppose its only fair that folks who know I do Photography would also assume I have a handle on this photoshop gadgetry.  I was asked today if I could digitize and restore an old family photo today.  What a fantastic little side project it has been.  

Stacey had this picture of her Mom (who incidentally looks just like Stacey in this photo!) that had been faded over time.  My Epson scanner is really awesome and scans at far higher resolution than I needed here.  Follow the jump to see how things went.

First step for me was to attempt to sort out the colors and contrast.  I used an automated process to get me part way there.  then started working on getting rid of the tiny cracks and blemishes in the photo.

At this stage I still had some odd red coloration from the auto correction and the colors were still very muted. 

I added an adjustment layer to de-saturate the reds, magentas and yellows, and added a mask to bring those back on the face where they were needed.  Then added some color layers for the grass and for the jacket.  Each layer amounted to picking an appropriate color (artistic license) filling the layer and using a blend mode to add it to the image.  then I used a mask to remove it from areas that didn't need it - and finally lowered the opacity to make it blend nicely and look real.

Here is the final result with some sharpening added, below is the original for comparisons sake.

I could probably bump the saturation a little more to bring those colors in deeper, but thats something I can do if later if needed.  There is only so much you can do about the softness and the film grain, I think it turned out real nice.  

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