2

I have some scans of old 35mm slides, many of which suffer from corner fading. I don't know the correct term...which is probably hampering my efforts to search for help in correcting the damage.

The scan might have decent colour, but suffers a gradual fade to orange toward one edge or corner...Faded problem image

So its not like removing a stain with a strong colour differential and nice defined edges. How do you tackle this?

1
  • 3
    The entirety of the image you show has a color tint. Can you show the full frame and specify which edge or corner you're referring to? – xiota Jan 2 '20 at 21:44
1

My quick attempt at fixing it. If you have many to fix, you will need an easy fix.

Really, really old slides (1950s?) had a serious fading problem, but I don't think these are that old. The cars appear to be from the 1970s.

The top left seems to be the most faded. The slides probably weren't kept in total darkness and this corner saw the most light.

First I selected the top left with the lasso tool, then feathered the selection (90). I applied "Auto Color". Then I inverted and applied "Auto Color" for the remainder. The top left still appeared a little too light, so I inverted again and used Levels to darken it slightly (move center slider slightly to the right).

Selection:

enter image description here

Final:

enter image description here

3
  • Although contrast is improved, the sky (upper left corner) in your final result looks green on my phone, which is arguably worse than the original. – xiota Jan 3 '20 at 18:02
  • @xiota - Yes, the sky is slightly green, but I consider that to be the least important part of the image. StevenK may have nailed it (hard to tell because his image is small), but his process is more complex. – Mattman944 Jan 3 '20 at 23:31
  • OP complained about a corner, and the green sky is in a corner. So may not be "the least important part" to OP. – xiota Jan 4 '20 at 0:59
0

Using Gimp (equivalent tools in Photoshop), used the "Quick mask" to make a gradient selection from 100% in top left corner to 20% in bottom right, then used Curves to set a black point and darken.

enter image description here

enter image description here

2
  • 1
    I don't think this has resolved the orange tiny. – mattdm Jan 3 '20 at 17:44
  • Also, personally, I find the increased contrast a little harsh. – mattdm Jan 3 '20 at 17:44
0

Photos (slides, film, photographic papers, etc) use layers of red/green/blue pigments in order to reproduce the colors in a scene; and when an image color shifts it is due to the different pigments fading at a different rate. In this case blue and green have faded more than red, although the red has faded some as well.

In order to fix this you have to add the missing colors back in; it is essentially a white balance issue, although it is not even/uniform. There are many ways of dealing with white balance issues; levels adjustment (setting white/blacks), average color inversion, color balance, etc, etc... lots of tutorials available on the web.

I used some of a lot of them, along with masking to limit them to specific areas... it's not perfect, but it was fairly quick.

And this is what the layers looked like (layer1 copy is an inverted average color layer)

enter image description here

3
  • "some of a lot of them"? Do you just use color blending mode for the inverted average color layer? – xiota Jan 3 '20 at 20:43
  • Yeah, I know it sounded weird... there are 4 different color correction methods used here, but not universally nor at full opacity (depending), and there are still other methods I didn't use. For the average color inversion I usually use normal or soft light blending modes at a very reduced opacity (normal @ 9% here). – Steven Kersting Jan 3 '20 at 21:29
  • Could you list the color correction methods along with brief description (enough for someone familiar with the tools to apply, eg, blending mode and opacity)? – xiota Jan 3 '20 at 22:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.