Like it? then share it!

Archive for the ‘photograph restoration’ Category

Daguerreotype restoration

In order to make a daguerreotype, iodine fumes are used to react with a silver-coated copper plate to form light-sensitive silver iodide. The plate is then exposed to light using a box and lens or camera and the image developed using mercury fumes, before being fixed in a warm solution of common salt. This was quite a lengthy process and the exposures were very slow, as plate was not that sensitive to light as we know photography today. The daguerreotype process was very popular during the first half of the 19th century, is was soon after replaced with faster and less complicated but safer techniques.

Old Daguerreotypes had to be protected by a glass font and sealed to prevent the image getting damaged, The image itself is a thin coating of deposits on the copper plate and can easily be ruined with a simple finger touch. Think of the image rather like candle soot on a glass tile, a very fine power that can be smudged with the lightest of touches.

I recently restored a Daguerreotype for a customer of mine.

Old Daguerreotype Restored

Old Daguerreotype Restored

Several scans of this beautiful little old Daguerreotype were needed. It measured around 5 centimeters tall and was encased in a red velvet and brass case, with a glass sealed glass panel protecting the image. The scans were combined to give the best image to start the restoration process.

Photo restoration editor’s pick

5 popular and useful posts.

My photo restoration blog is growing all the time and sometimes too much to read all at once, for convenience I have collated 5 popular and useful posts.


1: In digital photo restoration there are many tools an artist can use to help with their craft. Restoring a digital photo is sometimes very challenging but restoring an original is something else altogether, read here Can you restore an original?


2: One of the most exciting aspects of photo restoration is surprise. You are never sure what you are going to restore next and this photo of a  1900,s Unicycle record is one which ill never forget and had a great story to go with it too!


3: Sometimes images come nearly as long as i am tall! These are normally panorama images, for some examples check out the post Can panorama images be restored?


4: Everyone likes to wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed but what if your eye photos did not turn out as you wanted them, you could try the retouching eyes post.


5: If all of this sounds like something you could do, you could find out how to get started in photo restoration by reading how to start in photo restoration




Correct heavily faded colour

A customer of mine recently sent me this photo.

correct a heavy colour fade

correct a heavy colour fade

As you can see it is faded heavily in the middle due to sun exposure

It’s always sad to see your photos face in this way but all is not lost.

The first task was to see if I could recover any colour at the scanning stage. This saves time if you can scan one image correctly for the outer section and one for the inner and combine the two. This did not work that well as the density of the tones were too light to get close to the correct colours. Abandoning that approach i tried adjustments layers, but they reveal no colour left that can be restored in the center section. The carpet and surrounding background have enough clues to give the colours to paint back into the photo but still  the densities need to be changed.

I selected the faded area with the selection tools and adjust the curves so that it resembled the tone of the outer section. To check this was spot on I painted a little of the cushion covers colour, on a separate layer, over the lighter area and adjusting the curves and matched it as close as possible with the darker, outer section.

With the burn tool for shadows and then mid tones, i set about burning the bits of background that didn’t quite match perfectly with the surrounding tones. From here on in I used lengthy techniques described in the previous 2 posts for colourising or adding colour to old photos. The final result is below.

Correct heavily faded colour

Correct heavily faded colour

This took a fair while to complete but the result is more than worth it.!

If you wanted to read how to colour old photos and the associated techniques you can in Part 1 and Part 2 of colouring old photos.#

Colouring old photos can be done for as little as £25. The more complex they are the more it would cost. A typical examples is one or two people on a relatively simple background for £25. The above was £75

If you want to learn some more techniques for removing colour you can sign up to watch my restoration courses. For these premium courses there is a small charge otherwise you can browse through the blog and see what you can pick up.

Copy Guarded by IamShekhar's WP-CopyGuard.