Photo Repair and Restore

Trust the UK’s top-rated photo repair artist with your most precious memories

With over 900 positive reviews and many thousands of satisfied customers, Image Restore is the UK’s top-rated photo restoration service.

Despite advances in technology, digital photo repair remains a largely manual process and requires skill, dexterity, and patience to achieve the best results. I do not cut corners and always work to preserve the unique characteristics of your original images, while respecting the aesthetics and processing techniques of the time.

Hi, I'm Neil

Photo repair artist and founder of Image Restore, based in Hampshire.

How does it work?

Whether you are looking to repair a single image or restore an entire family photo album, I am here to help. Using a wide range of digital editing techniques, I can quickly and expertly restore just about any image.

For best results, I recommend sending your original images (where it is possible to work from prints, slides, or negatives in a wide range of sizes and formats). Alternatively, you can send a digital file from a scan that you have created yourself. This eliminates the extra cost, risk, and delay of sending your original prints by mail, no matter where you are in the world. Read my scanning guide to learn how to scan your images properly for best results.

In all cases, I begin by creating a high-resolution digital copy of your image which is then edited with specialised computer software, leaving your original photo unharmed. Your restored image is then sent to you as a digital file and/or a high-quality reprint, together with your original materials.

Your original images are handled with the utmost care and pricing is confirmed with you prior to commencing any work so that you know what to expect. I will provide you with a digital proof of your restored image(s) to ensure you are happy with the result prior to billing.

Still have questions? Check out the FAQ to learn more about my services or see below for examples of my work and sample pricing.

What kind of damage can be restored?

Scratches and cuts

Mounted or framed photos often get scratched when they fall off the wall and the glass breaks. The broken glass scratches the photo. If this happens to you carefully remove the glass and brush off any small bits.

Scratches and cuts restored

Scratches and cuts restored

Photos stuck to glass

When photos in frames get exposed to moisture they can stick to the glass. Damage can occur with amplified sun fading and water leaching out the colour. This stuck image is often discovered when the glass is accidentally broken. Fortunately, we can fix photos stuck to glass, even if the glass is broken.

Stuck to glass restored

Stuck to glass restored

Folds, cracks, creases, tears

For photos with cracks or scratches, we use “healing” and “patching” tools to take information from a nearby part of the image and fill in the gaps. Even photos that have been completely torn or shredded into pieces can be put back together and restored to their original state.

Folds cracks and tears restored

Folds cracks and tears restored

Ink, paint, or drink stains

Writing on the back of photos with ink can mean it transfers to photos underneath. It is always best to use a soft pencil. Leaving photos on flat surfaces can mean they get damaged by drink stains and not everyone remembers to remove the photo when redecorating and paint splatters can ruin a photo. All of these issues can be restored but do look after your photo.! If you find this happens to you we can help.

Ink marks restored

Ink marks restored

Water and fire damage

Water damaged photos can be repaired by reconstructing stained areas and filling in the details. Other reference photos can be useful for a successful restore. See this blog post on how we restore water damaged photos. No one can predict when a fire can happen but if it does and your precious memories get damaged we can help. Smoke and burn marks can be fixed and restored in a similar way to water-damaged photos.

Water damaged photos restored

Water damaged photos restored

Flaked emulsion

Old board based photos are very sensitive to moisture damage. If after exposure to water they are left to dry out in excessive heat the emulsion or surface of the photo can simply flake off. Photo restoration can help restore flaked emulsion.

Flaked emulsion restored

Flaked emulsion restored

Light leakage

Occasionally the worst happens and light gets into your camera. Fixing light leaks can be very time consuming to do. This is an example of a bad light leak, anything worse than this and your image may not be recoverable. If you wish to try fixing your photo yourself, you can watch a course on colour casts and fading.

Light leak restoration

Light leak restoration

Faded colours

Badly faded photos can be restored by painting in shadows and highlights to increase contrast. In extreme cases, we may first restore the image to a good black and white condition and then rebuild the colour by manually painting in multiple tinted layers over different parts of the image.

Faded colours restored

Faded colours restored

Tape marks

Sellotape seemed like a miracle invention for sticking a photo back together. With age, it leaves crackly, brittle, yellow-brown sellophane on your photos.

Restoring tape marks

Restoring tape marks

Silvering

Very old black and white images can suffer from “Silvering”. This is where the silver nitrate in the developer shows on the surface of dark areas as a shiny blue tint, sometimes obscuring the details. This can be fixed in most cases.

Silvering restoration

Silvering restoration

Missing fragments

For photos with missing pieces, we can either recreate those pieces from existing parts of the image, use another image as a donor, or redraw the details back in manually.

Missing pieces restored

Missing pieces restored

Wrinkled slides or negatives

Large format negatives or slides have a bigger area that can be damaged by heat or moisture causing wrinkles. A severe type of damage that can be quite upsetting. Fear not this is repairable as we can repair wrinkled large format negatives.

Wrinkled negatives restored

Wrinkled negatives restored

Damaged Daguerreotypes

Daguerreotypes are special photos indeed. They are fragile and normally come with their own case. Even this protective case can become compromised and cause the image to deteriorate. We can fix damaged Daguerreotypes 

Daguerreotype restored

Daguerreotype restored

Tainted tintypes

Photos made on tin are called TinTypes and still exist today. If you have one that is bent or scratched, we can fix it using digital techniques.

Tintype restoration

Tintype restoration

Photo repair price categories and examples

To keep things simple, I offer 3 convenient fixed price restoration categories: Simple, Medium and Complex. For extremely large or difficult projects, a customised quote will be provided. All projects are based on how much work goes into each image. Review the examples and details of what services are included in each restoration category below. Pricing will always be confirmed with you prior to commencing any photo repair work so that you know what to expect at billing. For a full list of prices see the photo restoration prices page.

If you are still unsure which category your photo fits into, send me an email or call . I can help discuss what is possible and what results you can expect and how long your project will take.

£9 Basic restoration

  • Simple fade corrections
  • Contrast adjustments
  • Simple dust and scratch removal
  • Sharpening
  • Cropping

£19 Medium restoration

  • Minor fading
  • Minor discolouration
  • Light mould or damage
  • Some hair-line fissures or cracks

£29 Complex restoration

  • Deep scratch marks / multiple paper wrinkles/folds and tears
  • Small to medium facial area corrections
  • Medium mould damage and or fading
  • Small areas missing or damaged
  • Small areas of face or body missing
  • Some scene rebuilding or object removing

£39+ Very complex restoration

  • Fatal mistake with a shredder?
  • Treasured family album damaged by fire or flood?
  • Family dog chewed up your favourite photo?
  • When it comes to extreme restoration challenges, I’ve got you covered!*
  • Extreme restoration projects are priced on a case-by-case basis and only after acceptance of a quote

* There are rare occasions when a complete restoration is impossible or would be too time-consuming (and therefore costly) to undertake. Even if you think your photos are beyond repair, I still encourage you to submit them for a free appraisal. Photo repair miracles occur on a regular basis and I still may be able to help!

For a full list of prices see the Photo restoration prices page.

For more examples of my work, see the Examples page.

Get Started with your photo restoration today!

No matter where you are in the UK, from Surrey to Somerset,  Wiltshire to West Sussex or Devon or Dorset you can have you photos restored by me. Covering the whole of the UK and indeed overseas, digital files can cut that distance to seconds. With the right scan, you don’t even have to part with your originals!

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