Monday, March 21, 2011

My latest and toughest challenge so far...

This poor Polaroid photo of a beloved Aunt was given to me to try and repair. I could not pass up this challenge.

First I was entrusted with the original photo to scan. The photo was so curled up and the cracks were peeling and curling I was very afraid of squashing it too hard in my scanner to create more damage. But luckily the Polaroid paper was more pliable than I thought so I could scan it several times at different angles in my scanner to get a good scan at 600 dpi for better quality.
 The background is just not interesting enough to save. So concentrating on the Aunt, I had in mind to replace the back ground for a nice studio type portrait. Now in the original photo her hair looks to be a large afro hair do. But zooming in and confirmation from the niece who is owner of this photo. Her hair is not as large as it appears from this view.There is a shadow behind her head. So I had to guess pretty much the hair outline.

Using mainly cloning, spot healing and healing brushes tools. Cropping, layer coping, moving, aligning, color adjusting on the Aunt. The hardest part was choosing the right color back ground.

By using color selector and clouds filter for the background colors and cloud effect. Then a process using the select and feather tools for the blending effect. Then the layer adjustment tool for the shadowing effect did the background effect come to life and tada..... the photo is finished.

She does look like a different person than in the original, but I assure you it's the same portrait. It's amazing going from a very dark background to a much lighter background makes a bid difference.

So this is the fun I have. My passion to try and save these treasured photographs before it's too late. Then see the face of the person who comissioned me on their photo. It's almost like an "Extreme Photo Makeover" show!

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