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Need graphics help with an old picture

I found a roll of film (old 35mm) that had never been developed and took it to WalMart to see if it could be developed. Nearly all of the pictures are of Derek when he was about ten and had a few pictures of Teddy with her first litter of pups (the pups were big enough to walk, were still nursing, and were all piled into an old Radio Flyer wagon with Teddy standing next to it).

However, the pictures are all green and you can barely make out the subjects in the pictures.

I don't know much about how to use photo programs I have (pretty good ones from what I understand), but am wondering if I scan any of these pictures and try to remove the green and leave the rest of the material, can it be done with possible enhancements to what's left to bring the subjects in better? I don't care if I lose most of the background like grass, etc. that is there...I mainly want what I hope to salvage, then print them again to send to Derek.

Does anybody here know graphics programs well enough to help me?


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You're lucky they came out at all!

In reply to: Need graphics help with an old picture

Did you get prints when you had the film developed? When I worked in a film lab, we could do some color correction to remove green by adding magenta, but that is subtractive color correction and I don't know if photoshopping programs use that method.

You could take the film to a lab and see if corrected prints can be made, but they will always have an "off" color to them. The film dyes change after that much time, past the point of natural-looking correction, I'm afraid.


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I have both the negatives and

In reply to: You're lucky they came out at all!

the prints (actual photos). What kind of lab would I take these items to in order to get them as best as can be? I was amazed at what the photos revealed...had no clue as to what could have been on the film and was pleasantly surprised, but would like to have the subjects as clear as can be possibly made even if I have to sacrifice all of the background. I realize they will never be good quality, but anything better than what I have right now would be a massive improvement....not to mention a real treat to have the pics of Teddy as young as two years old again and to have her puppies as well had me clapping my hands together like I found gold. lol

I also had a few rolls of old 1010 film that also were taken to Walmart at the same time and those photos (although some had 'dots' on them) actually came out better than the 35mm ones. Somewhere along the line I had been tossing these rolls of film into a bowl in the kitchen cupboard that had a lid on it and I just recently came across them. I knew they were REALLY old, but hoped for the best and more than I bargained for, I think. Perhaps the fact that they were in the dark for all those years is what 'saved' them?


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In reply to: I have both the negatives and


How about scanning one of the photos and then park the photo file somewhere on the Internet, then post the link to the photo in this thread.

Then people who have worked with Photoshop can take a crack at improving the photo.

If you do not have a place to park a photo on the Internet,
I suggest you use www.photobucket.com
You can register for a free account.
When you upload your photo(s), they will assign a link and the link will be directly below the photo.

Let us know the link, so that the photo can be downloaded.

Joe Randolph

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Toni...good suggestion of Joe's....

In reply to: Suggestion

If you post a link to a couple of those photo's, I'll see if any of my programs will help.


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It's at my website here

In reply to: Toni...good suggestion of Joe's....


I left it large (in real size not file size) so it might be easier to work with then.

If there is anything that can be done to make it better than it is, please give me the steps you took so I can do it myself with my photo programs for the others I would like to also salvage that have the same problem.

I really appreciate anything you might accomplish. Graphics stuff has been eluding me for a while now and I'd like to get better at it so I can salvage my old photos even from when I was little and ones I got from my mom's albums.

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The animals and wagon recover pretty well, but I can't see

In reply to: It's at my website here

too many Teddy details. This is a quick cut too see what might be possible.

I uploaded it here. At least you know this much is possible.

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Kidd, all you need now is a little "Visine". I understand...

In reply to: The animals and wagon recover pretty well, but I can't see

...it "gets the red out"...LOL...just a little Wednesday afternoon humor. I have not the foggiest idea how to manipulate any of those photo programs. But it does look like you and Joe are on the right track.

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Jack. It would be fairly simple to remove the red. The trick

In reply to: Kidd, all you need now is a little "Visine". I understand...

is in knowing how, and how not, to remove it. I just did a fast test to get an idea of what might possible if more time were spent.

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Here is a different approach

In reply to: It's at my website here

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Note: Removing color also removes a lot of the finer detail

In reply to: Here is a different approach

although that is not very strong to begin with. Noise filters have the same effect. That is they tend to blur the details.

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jonah used Irfanview

In reply to: Note: Removing color also removes a lot of the finer detail

with the swap colors option and got a fairly decent 'color' image....then I went a little further and tried using its Greyscale option and got a pretty decent black and white image. That Greyscale didn't have the dots, etc. but maybe it's because I also reduced the size of the image by 50% so they aren't so noticeable.

I can try other photo programs I have to see if anything more 'sophisticated' can do better (I have time to play with stuff) and if the best results I come up with are the two images from Irfanview, I'll still be pretty happy and go on to the rest of the pics that are also green.

Thank you all....


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Is anyone going to post the results so we can see what was

In reply to: jonah used Irfanview

accomplished? That would be interesting.

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Here's what I did with it using LViewpro 1D

In reply to: jonah used Irfanview


I think you'd do better taking it to a professional film shop where they could wash the negatives with the right correcting fluid to remove the top layer which probably contains most of the oxidized distortion. In fact, I'd try just a wash with some clean water on the film first, in an area that's maybe not on an image, or on the least desired image. It might remove the oxidized layer with just the water wash, and if it works on one, do the others and have them developed again. If you search around you can find quite a bit on film restoration. Best bet is someone who actually does it.
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Toni, I'm not an expert but ...

In reply to: It's at my website here

Did you scan the prints?

There are a LOT of ways to approach this. All of them are going to be limited by the quality of the picture you are trying to salvage.

My suspicion is that you will get much better results if you use a high quality scan of the negative than if you use a scan of the print. Also, when you make the scan, it would probably be better to use a file format other than JPG because every step in the JPG process involves loss of data. A format like TIFF requires a lot more space, but it does not throw anything away.

For good quality pictures that just need a little manipulation the JPG comes out OK, but the more manipulation you plan on doing the more you need a really high quality starting point.

Also, for some of the color manipulation it might be helpful to know the correct color for some of the picture's features.

Again, I'm not an expert but I believe all of the above is correct.

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Looks like all I did was

In reply to: It's at my website here

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(NT) Used MGI PhotoSuite 4

In reply to: Looks like all I did was

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If that happens again.

In reply to: I have both the negatives and

If you find undeveloped film that old, don't drop it at Walmart or some automatic processing place. Take it to a professional photo shop where they will promise to individually develop/process each role and make chemical corrections at that time to clean them up as much as possible. You will get a much better result, but will cost you several times more too.

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I can probably remove the green. However, posting my

In reply to: Need graphics help with an old picture

techniques on a public forum is not something I want to do. If you want to send one to me, I'll see what I can do for no charge. After that, we will have to agree on a fee.

Obviously, without seeing them, it's hard to make any promises.

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A non-expert quick fix....

In reply to: Need graphics help with an old picture

Don't know what happened to my first post, but here goes again...

Using Paint Shop Pro 9 and photo fix, without playing very much, here is a quick shot.

Go here.


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Your results

In reply to: A non-expert quick fix....

are nearly identical to the one jonah got using Irfanview's Swap Colors option.

The greyscale option for Irfanview also gave nearly the same results as John Robie's results.

I hadn't posted the results yet and planned to do that this morning since I was also playing around with some of my photo programs, and since the two best results jonah and I have achieved so far are very similar to what you and John linked to I won't link to mine.

It was suggested that I scan the negatives instead of the prints; however, I don't think my scanner does negatives....I thought you had to have a special scanner for that feature so I haadn't considered that option before.

Teddy was actually a beige color that looked pink in certain lights...which was why I nearly called her 'butterball' when we first got her as a two-month-old puppy because she resembled a turkey ready for baking in color. lol Some of her puppies (like the one in the forefront in the wagon with the white streak) had the same pink tinge to their fur.

Here's how she looked during her last year...

as you can see, she had turned nearly completely white with only a few darker beige areas showing.



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About scanning negatives ...

In reply to: Your results

The problem with scanning prints is that each step in the process generates some data loss. When you scan the negative you can potentially recover more information than you can from the print.
The down side to scanning negatives is that you probably have to push your scanner to its resolution limits.
The ideal scanner for negatives is a dedicated unit, but you could probably scan them on any good scanner. You just need to make sure that you put a white background behind the negative.
I've never done color negatives, but black and white negatives scan fairly well on my low end scanner. The most important thing is to scan the highest resolution possible.
My impression is that if you want to print a 4x6 at 200 dpi you will ideally want to create a scanned image at least 1600x2400 pixels. How many dots per inch that represents on the film depends on the film size.

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Problem with color negatives...

In reply to: About scanning negatives ...

There is a problem with scanning color negatives as opposed to black and white negatives. Color negatives have an inherent color tint by themselves. When printing color negatives with the old enlarger/paper chemical process you start off with a base color-correcting filter pack to which additional correction is added to adjust problems in excess to the base built-in tint.
So if you scan a color negative with a modern computer and reverse the colors to get a positive you still haven't dealt with the necessary base correction done by the old process filter pack.

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That is only if your scanner isn't designed...

In reply to: Problem with color negatives...

... to scan color negatives. Now-a-days scanners come with a variety of corrective software designed to compensate for those issues... at least for relatively modern film negatives. Some older films may use emulsions that discolor with age from the original.

As for the mechanisms of the scanners themselves? Most flat bed scanners built for negative scanning come with a backlight device to assist in getting full detail out of the negative.

Scanning from the negative in a lossless format rather than jpeg is preferable when possible. Another thing I have done myself that degraded scan quality? Fingerprints and dust on the scanner and negative. It is surprising how big a piece of dust or lint appears when you scan at the 300 + dpi.

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Correcting from old 35mm negs

In reply to: That is only if your scanner isn't designed...

Grim. Just read all the posts.
You do need to scan the negs with a backlight that is built in to the scanner as you mentioned.

The negs should be scanned very large. On the scanners that have a transparency adaptor, there are settings for scanning negs. Each scanner has different settings set up.

After scanning the negs the image will be inversed using photoshop.
That will produce a positive image to save and to print.

Once you have the positive image you can adjust the image for levels, curves and others for hue, saturation etc.
Dust and scratches on the negs? Use photoshop filters to minimize them.

Bottom line is do not work from prints. Start with the negatives and scan them correctly.
Toni does not have a quality scanner. Have her send the negs to you and scan them for her.
Otherwise I could scan the negs at our publishing facility in Marshfield, MA.
We have a great scanner setup for film only. The neg scans are about 22 inches wide, or close to 4x3 image dimensions.
Great professional scanner. Simple to operate and the results are outstanding.

Grim and Toni, You have my email address.
I also take Visa and Master Card. Just kidding! :

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That's a good result.

In reply to: A non-expert quick fix....

I'm thinking some sectional adjusting on those faded areas might help it all match up. Lasso off the edges and work individually with those sections to help match the middle parts better.

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