There are many programs available to help you preserve and correct your old photographs. The advantage of a restored photo is once it is restored digitally it will no longer be subject to fading and distortion problems again. If you have the time and patience to restore your old photos it can be a very rewarding experience. It also allows you to share your restored photos with family and friends. Below I have listed a few tips on how to restore your photos and get the best results.
1) Make sure and use a good scanner
When scanning your photos it is very important to use a good quality scanner. Before scanning your photos you will want to make sure and set the proper setting in the scanning program. It is always best to set the resolution and color depth to maximum. Make sure you scan each photo in color mode even if they are in black and white, since scanning in color gives you more detail from each photo.
2) Use a duplicate layer for washed out photos
This little trick works great for photos that are washed out and need to be darkened. Your photo editor will need to be able to support layers in order to use this technique. You will want to duplicate your photo into two layers by using the multiple layer blending button. This will darken your photo. You can also adjust the photo contrast also to help darken each photo as needed.
3) Sharpen your photo
You can apply an Unsharp or Sharpen effect to help adjust between dark and light areas in the photo. Test each setting to see what will work best for you.
4) Take out any blemishes
If your photo suffers from dirt, dust or scratches you will want to remove them for a better restoration. There are several photo editing programs that have filters to remove these unwanted blemishes.
5) Clone your image
The best tool you can use for black and white photos is the clone stamp. You can use it to lift background or skin information, then copy it and cover the imperfections on your photo. This works great when you need to remove a date stamp on a photo.