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Resurrecting old color slides
#1
I have a large pile of color slides, most taken 45-50 years ago, on either Ektachrome or Fujichrome.

although they've been stored in boxes that keep them in the dark, the colors of many have faded, the amount seems rather variable. (there is also a good bit of dust/dirt, that I'm not going to mess with unless I can also improve the image's colors to something closer to original.)

I'm looking for ways t try to return at least some of the vitality they had when new, but am sufficiently ignorant of complex photo processing that I haven't a clue where to start.

I've tried messing with curves, contrast, hue/ etc but can't get anything I like the looks of.

Can any of you suggest things I could (learn to) do to retain at least some of the original verve?

I'm attaching an example of one of the slides.

Fredex


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#2
If you look at the histogram (the shape in background of Curves), your photo has no highlight (the histogram should touch the right side). And if you take out the Pointer dialog and explore the clouds, you find that the green component in them is a bit weak (they should be neutral gray). So a quick fix is to use Curves on each channel to:

  1. restore the white point by making the curve hit the ceiling where the histogram stops
  2. increase contrast a bit by giving a slight S shape to the curve
  3. give a small boost to the Green channel by putting its curve slightly above the two others.
   

   

Remarks: to minimize color loss:
  • Work in 32-bit precision
  • It's best of you do everything in one shot (which is why Curves is the best tool)
Otherwise, did you try Color>Auto>Equalize?
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#3
(06-29-2020, 09:49 PM)Ofnuts Wrote: If you look at the histogram (the shape in background of Curves), your photo has no highlight (the histogram should touch the right side). And if you take out the Pointer dialog and explore the clouds, you find that the green component in them is a bit weak (they should be neutral gray). So a quick fix is to use Curves on each channel to:

  1. restore the white point by making the curve hit the ceiling where the histogram stops
  2. increase contrast a bit by giving a slight S shape to the curve
  3. give a small boost to the Green channel by putting its curve slightly above the two others.




Remarks: to minimize color loss:
  • Work in 32-bit precision
  • It's best of you do everything in one shot (which is why Curves is the best tool)
Otherwise, did you try Color>Auto>Equalize?
Ah, thanks for the pointers! I know just enough about photo editing to be able to cut and paste, or run unsharp mask, so your advice will probably be a huge help. I could see that green was missing but didn't know the proper way to augment green without screwing up other colors. I'll give it a whirl over the next few days (if I can--we are trying to do huge downsizing so we can move this summer, so free time to play with photos is at a premium) and see what happens.

Thanks again!

Fred
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