Photo Restoration

The digital darkroom is a marvellous place. A place where ageing can be reversed, weather transformed and darkness turned to light. A place where colour and light can be worked to polish an image and perfect an exposure.

An array of tools and techniques can be used to improve a picture and these same tools can also be used to bring life back to old or distressed photos, be they antique prints or more recent memories from the days preceding digital photography.

Faded or underexposed prints can be fixed by adjusting the colour curves. This powerful method uses a curves tool to manipulate the different lighting levels in an image, either across the spectrum or for a given colour channel. This way the balance of light and colour can be accurately adjusted to drastically improve the appearance of an image.

Colour saturation can also be adjusted, again either across the spectrum or for a single colour channel.

Tears and blemishes can be removed using simple cloning tools or more complex healing brushes, although the work can be detailed and time-consuming where the damage is extensive.

More complex repairs and restoration can involve dodging and burning to modify the contrast or exposure in selected areas of a picture.

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