Restoring broken glass images is tricky but those with faded colour as well makes for a very tricky restoration.

This Christmas period I have already seen some very poorly photos.

This image dropped through my door still stuck to the glass and broken and heavily faded in the sun. The best way to tackle an image like this is to convert the image to black and white and then recolour it afterwards. Not only does it make the restoration of the physical damage easier, but it also makes the colour restore simpler. There is no point trying to match the damaged colour. More effective to discard all the colour information and recolour from the bottom up.

There was nothing too complicated about this image when the tasks are broken down into bite-sized chunks.

Convert to black and white

Straighten, crop. Patch out cracks, clone any bits that do not patch very well.

Content aware fill comers. The corners are white because I had to raise the glass off the scanner bed to avoid glass to glass contact. This can both create “moire” and damage your scanner bed.

Where the glass and image were stuck, mask out an adjustment layer and lighten those stuck areas and add some contrast with the same mask.

Recolour using layers and adjustment layers. (heaps already on the blog about colouring)

Broken glass and faded colour image restored

Broken glass and faded colour image restored

Whilst this all sounds very easy it does take a while to do and therefore come at a fair cost for the work involved.