I recently worked on a photo restoration project that had a unique impact on me. You will see both the before and after pictures for reference.
The original was a tightly curled up and yellowing, black & white darkroom print. In order to get it in the computer, it had to be unrolled and gently crushed on the scanner to get it as flat as possible. I am still surprised that the print did not break.
On a side note, I think we could have dipped the print in water for a while and it would have taken the curl out with minimal damage to the print. I wasn’t about to take that responsibility with their memories.
I have been using a 12×12 Wacom Tablet, with its pen tool, for a couple of years now . It’s completely replaced the regular mouse. I would buy one for each computer in my office if I could. When I get a new MacBook Pro., it’s getting it’s own tablet. It was really instrumental in getting the job done fast and clean.
Here is now the reason for this post.
I got know a lot of the faces in the picture because so many of them had to be reconstructed. There were noses missing, ears missing, arms missing, etc. It’s ironic that these men had to give of themselves to each other in this project. I had to borrow arms and cheeks and noses to repair the damaged. I was fortunate that I did not have to borrow any eyes. There was usually one good eye that I could duplicate and fill the gap. Eyes are too unique.
Apart from the Photoshop, the photograph was fascinating. Shot cleanly, everyone was in focus. But like every group photo, not everyone was happy to be there.
Time for me to get overly analytical.
Even the guys who seemed uninterested were interesting. One can get a idea of their sense of direction for that day. Maybe there was a outing to get to, later that day ,or someother thing that was distracting on the minds of some of them. The human face evolves through the generations and I saw faces that I would have once seen in an old western. The smirks, the bravado and even the stern looks were captivating.
The group shot becomes so important because it can tell a story of one sees him or herself in that group. We play our perceived roles in the world even when posing for a group shot. This isn’t science, just my thoughts.
Next time you see a group shot. After you have looked at yourself and determined if it is a good photo or not, look at the other people. What do you see?