Do you edit old/vintage photos?

Today I am going through that box…Yeh that one with 60 years of memories in it…go ahead go get get it…Hey share some in “Share your photos” thread. My question is do you edit them after you scan them? I really have to restrain myself. I don’t want to lose the old school feel of film that is as much a part of the era as the image itself. I do tweak mostly contrast though.

This goes against my personal shooting process. Almost everything goes to post production. The way I approach photography is to 1st (primarily with people) is to get the image first as not to lose the memory. Knowing I can correct most major lighting issues in post. I tend to shoot on the dark side in camera so not to blow out highlights.

I may consider editing out creases, scratches, or chips in the photos. Or I may consider doing a full restoration, while keeping the original scan on file.

Ultimately, I’d say you’re right in keeping that old, time weathered look.
But It can be a lot of fun to bring that photo back into the modern world.
Personally, I get a lot of enjoyment from restoring pieces.

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To me, it all depends. On what you plan to do with the photos, and how badly they needs editing or fixing.

I’d say go ahead and get them all scanned, so you’ve got them. From there, you can evaluate each photo individually.

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Personal stuff is a personal choice.

On a professional level, when dealing with old vintage, or rather “historical” photos, we have to be very careful what we retouch here. Any digital aberration in an historical photo brings the whole thing into question, as one photo perceived as “shopped” not only affects the photo, but the entire message of the piece or maybe even the entire exhibit.

A rip or tear or really bad dust motes might be repaired, unless the photo is a halftone print. If you can’t match the half-tone in the repair, best not to do it at all.

When scanning old stuff, we have a kodak color and gray bar included in the scan like you see at the top of this scan.

Then that original is saved as an archive and never touched. Any adjustments are saved as copies.

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