When restoring old photos, you can be confronted with a wide range of problems ranging from mundane spots and scratches to exotic one-of-a-kind situations. Though the scale of problems is extremely wide, many of the solutions involve the same tools and techniques.

The goal of this chapter is to present you with a variety of restoration problems and the solutions for them. Because it's impossible to discuss the entire workflow for each project presented here, it's necessary to focus on the important highlights of how I would go about solving each of them.


In Chapter 11, you get a chance to put many of these techniques into action when you work on a beginning-to-end, hands-on restoration project.

Assessing the Damage

You should always get a bird's-eye view of a restoration project before beginning it. This gives you the opportunity to identify problems and think about how to handle them. Those problems consist of physical damage such as rips and mold, faded tones and colors, and even extreme physical damage such as major tears and water damage.

These issues are often compounded by the fact that old photos tend to be small in size. This is probably because small photos have always been cheaper, so they are more abundant.

Also, smaller photos tend to have a higher survival rate because they're often stored in albums and boxes protected from the ...

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