Jerry Nelson
McLean, VA

In a basic restoration, problems in non-critical areas are fixed, such as creases and dirt.  Uniform loss of saturation is restored to faded color prints.  Color is balanced, shadowy dark places are "opened up", highlight washouts are reduced, resolution is enhanced, motion blur because the camera moved can be canceled.  Some of the "deer caught in the headlights" ugliness of flash pictures can be softened.  

             Polka dot dress ORIGFrances RESTORED
If photos don't appear side by side, drag your browser window a little wider.

This was only a basic restoration -- the cracks on the left are minor and not across the face, and the main problem lies  with the basic density and contrast.   I see many darkening photos from the time of World War II, when people tried to make their own photos for loved ones overseas, but often got the Do It Yourself darkroom processing wrong.  In severe cases of bleaching or darkening, chemical restoration can be tried as a last resort after the best digital image is safely in hand.

EasterSundayBreakfast, Weiden Bavaria 1949         Easter Sunday breakfast, CROPPED

The art here is not in the restoration, which is Basic Level, but in realizing that there is a classic husband-and-wife pose on one side of a badly lit and unexciting flash photo.  Although I enjoy working with the images, the real fun is finding them in the first place -- having a family treasure hunt.  

Lodge kitchen original flash photo     LodgeKitchenFIXED

Flash photos are easy but not attractive.  Some people are washed out, others too dark, and the ambience of the setting is lost in shadow.  (Let's not even discuss "red eye".)  The corrections you see done here on a powerful computer may someday  be performed inside the camera itself.  A better solution is bounce flash, but more powerful flash units that actually light the whole room take more power than "faking it" later with lengthy computations on a swift computer chip.  

Rev 4/06  1/2010

top          home          Examples: MID-LEVEL          Examples: TOP-LEVEL          Examples: PANs          Outside commercial svcs

How to Deal with the Family Photo Collection