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Restored an 105-year old picture, I thought, revised once more


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After and before screenshot from a .TIFF scan sent to me from a photo dated 1917.  Made a B&W adjustment, much Inpainting.  Used the Patch Tool for a missing ear, missing shoe, part of a missing chin, and a coat button.  Dodge Tool eliminated much dark stuff in the background and on the white rectangle at the right of the image.  Burn Tool darkened some parts of the uniforms so they didn't look dusty.  Merge Visible with a Blend Mode of Colour (I think, unfortunately didn't write it down), to turn the still grungy greyish stuff to almost white.  Exported as a .TIFF.

Placed the new .TIFF as a new document.  Then I used the JR Sharpening macro, Enhance Depth and Contrast, repeated that macro.  Then made a Brightness/Contrast Adjustment.  Much more Inpainting to get rid of about 75-100 tiny white specs of about 1-2 px each which were still on the dark uniforms.  Then used the JR macro, Edge Detect Sharpening.   Merge Visible.  Export as a new .TIFF.  Suggestions to improve this?

 

1430412885_Screenshot2022-07-21at13_00_00.png.472818879b7b84bf9feebd8126abc65a.png


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33 minutes ago, v_kyr said:

The eye and eyebrow areas of the faces would look better (not as dark) with a little bit of dodging.

Agree.  Tried this. 

another grandfather.tiff


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Hey, @jmwellborn - I couldn't resist the urge to try my hand at this. Hope you don't mind. I think you have increased contrast and sharpening a bit too much; I like some of the softness that comes from these old prints. I'd be happy to share the .afphoto file if you'd like, but I've included a PNG export below.

Like you, I did a lot of inpainting and cloning to get rid of most of the scratches. I didn't go after the stuff on the background too aggressively, because I think it's less objectionable there (and adds a bit of character). I adjusted tonality with Brightness & Contrast and with Curves. I also used a Frequency Separation to smooth out the facial skin, since it was really blotchy. I duplicated the High Frequency layer (and lowered its opacity some) to do whatever sharpening I did.

What do you think?

2048096710_1917Edit.thumb.png.500207f7eeffe197e9c15546d7026ebe.png

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@smadell  I think your version is so much better than mine.  On a retina screen things can get really overdone and I overdid it.  I would be really grateful for your . afphoto file, so I can see exactly what you did.  Homework!!!!!!


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1 hour ago, smadell said:

I've attached the .afphoto file for you, @jmwellborn. Let me know if you get it, and what you think.

1917 Edit.afphoto 13.6 MB · 1 download

Got it!  Thank you so much!!


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2 hours ago, jmwellborn said:

@smadell  I think your version is so much better than mine.  On a retina screen things can get really overdone and I overdid it.  I would be really grateful for your . afphoto file, so I can see exactly what you did.  Homework!!!!!!

I would say that if you took another stab at the original you'd have different results. I have found that practice leads to discoveries and and greater ability. The "Patch" tool is your friend, more so than the clone tool. In some cases, the stronger contrasts of your version can be a creative solution in regards to design. If it's historic accuracy and restoration you're aiming for then just keep at it. And the best advice? Walk away every now and then. This type of work, if done continually in one session, can really mess with your objectivity, not to mention your eyes.

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@dannyg9  Yes, my particular Clone tool definitely doesn't think much of me.  On the other hand, the Patch tool has decided to be tolerant and to give me another try!  And you are right — walking away is definitely part of the scheme.  After an hour or so of nose-to-the-24"-screen inpainting (why does spell-check insist on changing inpainting to pinpointing?) tiny little dots do interfere with the joie de vivre.  One tends to reach a point where one thinks Oh, fine!  "Good enough for Government Work."   (Except that I don't work for any government.)  


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@RichardMH  Remarkable!  Unfortunately $99.99 may be a bit steep for volunteering to try to fix one image.  But with a fresh and spiffed up image to fiddle with, who knows?  I may be tempted, after all.  Thank you!   


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7 hours ago, jmwellborn said:

@RichardMH  Remarkable!  Unfortunately $99.99 may be a bit steep for volunteering to try to fix one image.  But with a fresh and spiffed up image to fiddle with, who knows?  I may be tempted, after all.  Thank you!   

The free trial will get one images done. Its pretty easy to use. I don't think they have a watermark or anything.

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Here goes.  With an enormous of amount of help from @smadell, who patiently and very kindly led me through a number of things (most importantly, Frequency Separations, which I had never understood) here is another stab at the picture.  I agree with him that some softness is more appealing with a very old picture.   I also appreciate so much @v_kyr's suggestion about lightening the faces! In the process, I have given the chap (third from the right) a better ear, sorted the  chin for one chap (third from the left) and gave the fellow on the far left one eye, because he looked rather blank.  Not the best matching eye, but I tell myself he is squinting against the sun!  I tried his right eye, but failed miserably.  

I tried working from scratch with the image that @RichardMH very kindly posted, but found that in the end, after all of that inpainting, there was an infinitesimal difference between using the original image and the enhanced image using Topaz Gigapixel.   Thank you everyone for all of your help.  It is very much appreciated!!  

1635908980_2ndmondaytryatgrandfatherwithsmadellhelp.thumb.png.1c8cef5b57fa608642989174f21b8d9b.png 


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Very well done. At the risk of driving yourself bonkers, if you were to revisit after a time, you'd probably have more skills in your arsenal and a few tricks and the results would be different once again. Greater or not is in the eye of the beholder, but in about a week's time you've advanced quite a bit. Again, well done.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 7/21/2022 at 9:37 PM, smadell said:

Hey, @jmwellborn - I couldn't resist the urge to try my hand at this. Hope you don't mind. I think you have increased contrast and sharpening a bit too much; I like some of the softness that comes from these old prints. I'd be happy to share the .afphoto file if you'd like, but I've included a PNG export below.

Like you, I did a lot of inpainting and cloning to get rid of most of the scratches. I didn't go after the stuff on the background too aggressively, because I think it's less objectionable there (and adds a bit of character). I adjusted tonality with Brightness & Contrast and with Curves. I also used a Frequency Separation to smooth out the facial skin, since it was really blotchy. I duplicated the High Frequency layer (and lowered its opacity some) to do whatever sharpening I did.

What do you think?

2048096710_1917Edit.thumb.png.500207f7eeffe197e9c15546d7026ebe.png

I am happy to send you an image if you like to have a bash?

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2 hours ago, Sam Neil said:

I am happy to send you an image if you like to have a bash?

Are you offering this to @smadell or to me?  Or to us both?  Any input is most gratefully accepted.  This is definitely a learning experience!!


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6 minutes ago, joe_l said:

No, I don't think so, otherwise I commited a crime by using this service. ;)

I deleted that post because I couldn’t make an edit to it, even though I used the proper procedure ( to wit: clicking on …) I have just looked this company up on the Web.  They are offering this service free of charge — at least for the present.  The company appears to be completely legitimate, as well.  One loads an image onto their interactive website, gets a corrected image, which can then be downloaded.  I tried a rather dim screenshot unrelated to the picture in this topic and it came back quite nicely enhanced.  I was then able to easily download the image to my iPad (working from it at present).  So I think neither of us is a villain!

Thank you very much for the information!


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@joe_l Here is my latest attempt, using the Baseten converter, thanks to you, and starting all over again, with much inpainting, patching, cloning, and mumbling.  I used @smadell's very kind instructions — especially regarding Frequency Separation — and a gentle sharpening at the end.  The reason for this is that the person who sent me the image wants to use it for Christmas cards.  After some printing tries and errors, I find that the extra detail will probably carry over better on printed media.

At least I think so at this moment.  This time I even have all the buttons on the coats, and a pair of eyes (borrowed) for the gentleman on the very left.  No matter what, I hope it is a far cry from the original grim post.  Thank you everybody who have helped so much!!

 

869802511_88-2png.thumb.png.85c38569bc5a358974c13afa8cffcf84.png 

 

 


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13 minutes ago, jmwellborn said:

and a pair of eyes (borrowed) for the gentleman on the very left

Just my opinion, of course, but I think the creepy look of those borrowed eyes slightly spoils what is a rather splendid overall result.

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