4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 23, 2014 7:26 AM by DrStrik9

    Old photos to new


      I just found a really old photo of me and my friends from about 10 years ago. It was taken on an old camera that uses film and it is really faded. After scanning this into my computer and uploading it in Photoshop, how can I make it look brighter?

        • 1. Re: Old photos to new
          DrStrik9 Level 4

          It will need to be 16- or 32-bit to be of any value.


          For older images, you can use a normal desktop scanner to make HDR (32-bit) scans. If the scanner software allows changes in exposure, you can scan the same image 5 times, each scan with a different exposure, and in Photoshop convert those 5 scans into an HDR image, where global constrast ranges, detail, etc., can be globally adjusted and applied. Then you can move it to 16-bit and edit at will, making it into the image you want it to be.


          I find that this method yields the finest results with old photos. You can use Photoshop's tools working in the higher bit-depth to really sculpt those values.

          • 2. Re: Old photos to new
            Doug.S Level 3

            Try duplicating the background layer  (ctrl+j), then set the new layer to multiply blend mode....should help a lot. Do again if needed.

            • 3. Re: Old photos to new
              Trevor.Dennis Adobe Community Professional

              Always worth uploading the image to this forum.  It's much easier to give advice when you can see what the problem is.

              • 4. Re: Old photos to new
                DrStrik9 Level 4

                Here's a before and after example of old to new, using a desktop scanner to make 32-bit images out of 5 scans at different exposures. Without the additioaal bit-depth, it would have been very difficult if not impossible to do this from the faded originals using normal scans. I used Photoshop's native Merge to HDR Pro ... but more recently I'm using Google's Nik Collection : Merge to HDR Efex Pro 2, which is a really great tool for HDR in Photoshop.


                Additional work was done mostly using clone for cleanup, curves adjustment layer for value adjustments, and hue-saturation adjustment layer for saturation.




                And here are the 5 original scans of the most faded old shot, prior to creating the HDR image.