Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Photo Processing Technical Notes

This picture of Tugy's Bar in the Southern Hotel building in Covington was taken in the mid-1970's, some 45 years ago. 

Click on the image to make it larger.

 Here are some technical notes on the processing of that photo:

The picture of Tugy's Bar at the top is just a small portion of a decades old slide of the Southern Hotel. The slide was dirty, dusty, and its color was deteriorating. Here's the process I went through to get it cleaned up a little.

1. Zoomed in on Tugy's Bar, cropped out the rest of the Southern Hotel building.
2. Ran a sharpening filter to help sharpen the focus.
3. Blue splotches were everywhere, hundreds of them, the result of the color dyes breaking down. Instead of trying to color correct the hundreds of blue splotches, I switched the whole thing over to black and white, making the blue splotches gray. Then I selected out specific areas and blurred them to smooth out the splotches. 
4. In a quick three hour re-coloring session, I tinted all the picture elements ( the buildings, the cars, the street, the trees) back to a natural color.
5. I retraced the letters on the signs. 
6. Then I ran the whole thing through a watercolor painting filter to increase the artistic look and take out the last few slide imperfections.

Here's a procession of the different image processing stages