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Updating restoring very old photos

Nov 7, 2011, 21:18 (This post was last modified: Nov 7, 2011 21:25 by algeorge.)
Post: #1
Updating restoring very old photos
Hi all. I have checked out help and cant fathom out a decent method to fix photos which are well past their used by date see attached.
Note in the left side how the film has faded badly; I want to change the levels in this area, and preferably blend the borders with the adjacent area.
Am I correct in assuming:
1..use the selection lasso for area and create a new layer
2..apply levels to that layer only
3..merge the edges somehow??

Thanks for any advice,
Alistair.


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Nov 7, 2011, 22:29 (This post was last modified: Nov 7, 2011 22:41 by ofnuts.)
Post: #2
RE: Updating restoring very old photos
(Nov 7, 2011 21:18)algeorge Wrote:  Hi all. I have checked out help and cant fathom out a decent method to fix photos which are well past their used by date see attached.
Note in the left side how the film has faded badly; I want to change the levels in this area, and preferably blend the borders with the adjacent area.
Am I correct in assuming:
1..use the selection lasso for area and create a new layer
2..apply levels to that layer only
3..merge the edges somehow??

Thanks for any advice,
Alistair.
To merge the edges of the various layers you have basically two solutions:
1) create layers with fuzzy edges from the beginning: after the lasso selection, use Select/Feather with a rather large value (10% of the photo dimension).
2) much better way IMHO:
- do not use selections... make one full layer by area you want to improve
- to merge layers, add layer masks(*) to the layers, then paint the mask black where it should be transparent, and white where you want the full effect, and gray for partial transparency (light gray being less transparent than dark gray) . The white to black transition can be done using a large fuzzy brush and/or the airbrush. You can also use the lasso to select the area of interest, paint the selection white, the inverted selection black, and use a Gaussian blur on the whole (this is what Select/Feather does, except that at this point you can better decide where things happen). If you want to adjust your results, just repaint the layer...

[attachment=736]

(*) since you seem to know a bit of Gimp already, I won't belabor the layer masks here. Once you know they exist, finding how to use them is easy.

(**) The "improved" part of the picture above has been done with the Curve tool, by adding contrast in the high lights.

Edit: then I had afterthought, and only wanted to restore the face. No problem, just paint a bit more, with a soft brush to restore the jaw line:

[attachment=737]

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Nov 7, 2011, 23:20
Post: #3
RE: Updating restoring very old photos
Thanks a lot. Much to think about, and appreciate concise answer.
I tried the 'extra' python scripts too: Restore.py etc on some other photos but they did not seem to work well
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