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Removing shadows, dust and scratches

Removing shadows, dust and scratches

(OP)

Hi,

I am trying to tidy a group photograph. The main problem is that there is too much shadow on the one side of the faces causing a loss of detail in the shadow areas. I have been playing with the various tools in photo-paint, but as yet haven't found an effective way of solving the problem.

My second problem is that during the negative scan (600DPI) the image has picked up some dust. Is there a quick way of removing dust and scratches, without re-scanning. (I had to use a friends scanner)

Please be gentle with me, I have only been using Corel-paint for a week.

regards
Canonball      

RE: Removing shadows, dust and scratches

Lots of things can be done - there is a dust/scratch removal tool, but that can wind up smoothing things out too much sometimes... sounds like lots of time with the clone tool. Are you able to post the image on a site where people can look at it and give more specific advice?

RE: Removing shadows, dust and scratches

(OP)
javabear,

 Good idea, but I’m not sure about posting the picture on the Internet, it could turn up anywhere! I tried the dust tool but wasn't very impressed.  The clone tool never seems to look nature when used on skin, maybe I’m doing it wrong. Would I be better off with photo-shop?  

RE: Removing shadows, dust and scratches

I don't think this is an issue of one product over the other as they both do pretty much the same thing in the same manner - it's probably more a question of time and skill. But again, you can't really expect people to give you advice on how to fix a photo they've never seen - there may be elements in it that would affect the outcome of the fix that you're not mentioning. You might check out www.retouchpro.com - there may be tips there for you.

RE: Removing shadows, dust and scratches

For the shadows on the faces, under Image-> Adjust-> Brightness/Contrast/Intensity this tool should resolve most of the shadows.  Brightness and Intensity can do wonders for shadows.  Also, you can mask off certain sections to brighten.  This is particularly useful in high contrast photos (i.e. deep shadow, and brightly lit subjects) to mask off just the shadows.  Since you say you scanned a slide, you will be amazed at the amount of detail that can be drawn out of even the deepest shadows.

Be sure the preview button is selected, you can also choose the double pane icon to see the before and after.

As for the dust and scratch removal under Image-> Correction-> Dust and Scratch this tool can sometimes work prety well, but as Javabear mentioned, you can end up causing more smoothing then intended, and blur the whole image.  

If you don't like the clone tool, sometimes you can use the color picker, select a tonal area (3X3 or 5X5) and get a rough tonal approximation.  Then use the smallest size paintbrush toget the job done (often times 1 point) then use the smudge tool to "smear" the colors together.  The same result can be accomplished with the clone and smudge tool.  This may be enough to get you started.

One last thing, don't be too critical if it isn't perfect.  You must keep in mind what your final output size and resolution will be.  This can often turn monumnetal disasters into barely noticeable imperfections.  And then, 9 times out of 10, those imperfections are only noticed by you, and not your audience.

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