Old crusty pictures restoration

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by n8236, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. n8236 macrumors 65816

    Mar 1, 2006
    Hello photo peeps,

    I'm new to the entire world of photography and wanted some expert advice on restoring an old crusty picture. It's a photograph of my parents' marriage over 30 years ago. The picture is slightly partially torn, faded colors and just in general old.

    Is there a professional service that can help restore it? I know it won't be 100%, which is ok.
  2. acearchie macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2006
    There are plenty of retouchers that will help you out. If it's a one off shot you might find people on this forum will help you out.

    There are also plenty of other communities online that would be willing to help.
  3. Bending Pixels macrumors 65816

    Jul 22, 2010
    If you want to learn how to do this yourself, get Photoshop and join NAPP
  4. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    If it's just one photo, find a place the does photo restoration and have them do it. They will do a very good job.

    If you have more, then get a scanner with ICE (I think that stands for Image Correction and Enhancement). My Epson scanner has a setting that does a very good job of removing scraches and restoring color. My wife has some photos that are almost completely red, but they look great after they're scanned.

    I'm sure there are other ways to restore your photo, but I know these will work.
  5. 666423 Guest


    Feb 6, 2012
    Check your local camera shops. They often do photo restoration even if they don't advertise it. If they can't help you, more than likely they'll know where to send you.
  6. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    Get a trial of Photoshop CS6 from Adobe. :) Spot/healing, patching, and content-aware are your best friend.
  7. wolfpuppies3 macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2012
    Virginia, USA
    This will be a learning experience for you. Scan the image (several copies please) and use Photoshop Elements or Lightroom and do it your self. Someone mentioned spot healing and that is an excellent place to start.
  8. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Dec 29, 2006
    Monterey CA
    This is good advice. It is how I salvaged a number of old family photos. I have Aperture and used about every control at one point or the other. PS is even more capable.

    People may not realize that photos in the old days were generally taken by professionals and advanced amateurs who owned expensive cameras. Most of these cameras were view cameras and so the quality of the photos is often excellent and you have a good image in there to start with. Photos a hundred years ago were expensive and each one was taken with care.

    I also suggest physically printing your irreplaceable family photos. I used the excellent Aperture book option and gave a copy to each adult relative. I figure at least one or two families will treasure them and pass them along. And someone could copy those photos and make additional books. Digitals will disappear and future generations will have not clue. It is strange, but even though billions of photos are now taken every year with all sorts of digital divides, few of them will be around in even 20 years, much less for future generations.
  9. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    I do a great deal of photo restoration and retouch and if you are attempting to do this yourself - here are some tips

    If the pic is 8x10 or larger, scan at 300 dpi
    For smaller pix, scan at 600 dpi

    Many will tell you to scan all at 300 dpi but to do real clean work, you need the extra resolution even if it records the paper qualities.

    If you use a proper scanner, save as tiff not jpg and depending on your scan software you can choose to do partial correction. In my case, I do no corrections with scanner software and go straight to Photoshop. If the image is monochrome, you can probably use other software that is cheaper - Pixelmator, Photoshop Elements etc as you wont need the bit difference that Photoshop proper offers.

    Advanced work - I scan in color and at times can make more serious corrections for monochrome images by using the some color filtration(s) and more. You can read up on that as it can in fact make work easier and faster if you learn a few quick adjustments.

    As others have said you have several tools that will do some really excellent fixes for healing, cloning and with the newer PS6, you can fill in missing areas by generating a delta of data from adjacent areas quite nicely.

    Good luck
  10. anbranco macrumors newbie

    Mar 8, 2008
    Hi there. I do photo restoration for some time now as a hobby using PS CS6.

    Pls send me the scanned copy via email (low res for the time being) and I can see what I can do.


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