The client who took this photo many years ago nearly tossed this picture of her mother: it was rolled up into a one-inch tube. The major crack across her waist was cleanly ripped through across most of the photo, and was only connected by the paper at the far left.
Here’s another example – in this one the client wanted the yellow cast removed, too. It also illustrates how one can replace missing corners and such.
Here’s the image I use on my business card – these are my grandparents. I didn’t have completely-ripped photo handy, so I printed a faded version, tore it in half, rescanned it, and did the repair work. This isn’t quite the same as working from an old print, but the good image really is a ‘fix’ from a damaged one:
I’m not trying to make a statement about the relationship I have with my sister here (she’s a fine person, in fact), but the goal was to get a photo of our dear mother and she was just there to keep Mom from falling off the cliff.
In this photo, the cars and power lines were removed:
This photo of a client’s great-grandfather was from a 1930’s military group photo. The picture was rolled tightly and covered with cracks; we scanned it, repaired the image, isolated the subject, and put him against a proper flag, to make a nice 8×10 for the family.
Here’s another ‘isolation’ exercise: I posed to match the Civil War general, isolated my head, and parked it over the original. A bit of texture and color work and I find myself suddenly an officer:
We have our own photo lab in our brain, which intensifies and separates colors when we’re there. So we will see the nuances of many colors, which the camera will not display. Thus when we see the print of that gorgeous sunset, we don’t experience the same wonder that we did when we were there. We are able to recreate that in the image so that it will convey more of what you saw when you were there. It may be retouched, but it presents a more truthful representation than the dull and lifeless ‘standard’ image.