It Can Always Be Better

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ask The Retoucher #59 Detail Retouching and Restoring an Old Family Photo

Finer detail work on a photo by Scott Griessel at Creatista:

Methods to clean up stray hair on the model:
  1. Use the Healing Brush and Clone Stamp to remove the stray hair or…
  2. Lasso the background area of the photo, feather it and go into Quick Mask mode and copy and paste it into its own Layer, make a Layer Mask and use the Paint Brush Tool to smooth out the edges.
  3. Clean up the hairs on the neck with the Clone Stamp.

Working on the eyes:
  1. Work on photo at 100%.
  2. Copy eyelid and part of the eye and paste it into its own Layer.
  3. Paint with a Quick Mask Tool.
  4. Sharpen Layer and pull back with opacity in the Layer Pallette.
  5. Brighten up the cornea with the Dodge Tool.

Old family photo restoration

First photo is out of focus and a second is much better. Work on #2 first.
  1. Crop and straighten the photo.
  2. Save as a working copy, changing name slightly.
  3. Eliminate the color cast, choosing the Black and White Adjustment Layer.
  4. Duplicate the Background Layer.
  5. Remove obvious dust and scratches using the Clone Stamp and Healing Brush.
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Send your questions and problem photos, your location—and genealogical society affiliation if appropriate—to Eric for future "Ask The Retoucher" columns. Visit Photo Grafix online for more information.

Eric runs Photo Grafix, a humble photo-retouching studio in Evanston, Illinois (USA), making photo illustrations and improving photos for hundreds of people and companies worldwide. If he doesn't know the answer, he won't rest until he finds it. Eric Basir is at your service: With each "Ask The Retoucher" article, he'll help you successfully tackle your digital photographic problems. 

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