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Damage caused to photos by posting incorrectly

Posting original photos sounds simple. Many people do get it wrong. This article should help bring to light posting mistakes you can make and how to avoid them.

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When posting your precious, original photos to us there is a right way and a wrong way to do it.

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Here are some of the things to avoid when posting your photos

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Dont use paper clips

  • When posting, do not paper clip you original photo to your letter. The paper clip will get squashed into the photo when it passes through the sorting machines in the post office. The rollers will cause the paper clip to damage the photo and that will be an added cost you had not bargained for. Remove all paper clips
To avoid Paperclip damage, do not post your photos paper clipped to a letter.

To avoid Paperclip damage, do not post your photos paper clipped to a letter.

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Photos from Sticky Albums. use separating sheets

  • Those albums with sticky adhesive pages designed to hold you photos in place are great aren’t they? No they are not! The glues can be harmful to the photos (see storing your photos correctly ) If you remove them from this type of album and them stack you photos i a neat pile ready for posting, they all stick together. This causes damage to the important image side of the photo when they are separated! To a void this place a sheet of paper between each one.

No sticky tape

  • Taping your photos down inside your package can cause great problems.  Tape in any form can be a problem if used in copious amounts. An example would be to stick your photos to a piece of card and then tape them into a make shift envelope, and tape up the jiffy bag you put it all in. Too much tape means its very hard to get into the parcel and scissors have to used. The tape, if badly applied can stick on the inner side of the envelope. When you try to take out the photos the then pulls off the surface of the photo damaging it. It can then roll up and cause further damage.

Use extra stiffening card

  • When posting old photos its important to add extra card to prevent them getting bent in the post. A perfectly flat photo can get bent and damaged without the proper protection. We then have to restore out that damage on top of any other problems the photo may already have. That is a cost you dont want.

Include contact details

  • Not including contact details is far more common than you might think. I get quite a few parcels with nothing more than my address on the outside. A little note on the inside that says “further to our conversation, i enclose the photo we spoke about, kind regards Jim”That’s it! No full name, address, email or phone details. Not even an address on the back of the envelope.  Please ensure you include your details when posting and what it is you require. I speak to many people a day and am unable to recall every conversation.

Rolled photos use a large bore tube

  • Sending a photo that is too big to send flat can be done in a posting tube. However done be tempted to use a narrow roll. Rolling the photo tightly could cause it to crack or crease and making it very hard to unroll again. If it does roll its best to roll it loosely and use a large bore tube. Strangely there is limit to tube sizes when using Royal Mail both in length and diameter. However if you box it in or change the shape with some bubble wrap and a posting bag there seems to be no issue.
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I hope these posting tips will help with a trouble free image-restore photo restoration experience.

Restore a faded colour photo that has shifted in the frame

Restoring colour photos is never easy. When they are unevenly faded it makes it very tricky but when they are both unevenly faded and the frame has shifted and the sunlight has faded it some more… this was no easy restore!

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Tackling a restore this complex require some thought on the best processes to fix it. No amount of automatic colour fix filters is going to get close to resolving this!.

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First the over all tone was brought up to more normal levels to see what colour could be brought back. I concentrated on the center section but soon found it was way more faded in mid tones than the outer rings. The image was never going to be corrected with matching colour tones if the densities of those rings were not equalized.

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Restoring a colored photo that has faded and slipped in the frame

Restoring a colored photo that has faded and slipped in the frame

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It took some time to get the densities of the colours to match. I used “apply image”, some “dodge and burn” also some layer masks to blend it all in. It left a mess of over saturated colours in those rings. The colours then had to be desaturated and match in. Needless to say they didn’t match or come that close to blending in. I ended up recoloring the water and grass with colored overlay layers and painting it back in, as it was the only way to get a good even tone.

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The water created another problem, banding between the fade lines. Here i used a combination of both dodge and burn and frequency separation techniques. I’ll cover that in another post!

Any questions on this restore i’ll be happy to help.

 

Mylands Paints and Varnishes 1884

I was approached by the Myland Paints and Varnishes to re-colour one of their old photos of the newly set up shop in Lambeth from 1884.

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“John Mylands paints story began in 1884 when ‘Honest’ John Myland set up his modest shop in the heart of Lambeth. Unlike some other paintmakers of the day, John was absolutely in thrall to the art of the colourman, insisting on only the very best materials that would allow him to create colours that were lustrous and flawless, with guaranteed quality.” – Mylands.co.uk

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Like any image from this era it had mottled fading. Areas of uneven fading in spots. Its rather like getting a sponge and dabbing on a freshly painted surface and lifting off the paint. Tricky to fix unless you are a dab hand at dodge and burn with a soft low opacity brush!

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Mylands Paints and Varnishes 1884

Mylands Paints and Varnishes 1884

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The shop still in the family business today. Mr Myland wanted the image for launch the were doing of a new line of products. The only problem was the image had to be wall to ceiling and hand coloured!

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Whilst the restoration went well the colouring was lengthy but had to be subtle. A quick look at the image doesn’t seem like much colour is in the image. But due to the colour charts and bottle labels and shelves with numerous items there were dozens and dozens of them. There are many references to colouring on my blog on how to do this.

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Mylands Paints and Varnish 1884 hand coloured image detail

Mylands Paints and Varnish 1884 hand coloured image detail

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It took many revisions to get the colouring correct. My Mylands paints and labels had to be correct according to his paint colours and branding colours. I worked with him very closely to get the image to a quality that would enable him to produce a massive enlargement for his product launch.

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