Photo restoration of faces with a piece missing is always a tricky restoration to perform. If it is not known how the facial features appeared in the original and there is no reference then these features have to be retouched from pieces of the original photo. The face has to be visualized complete and then a bit at a time, restored using a tiny bit of tone and texture from the original photograph.

Photo restoration and rebuilding a face with a piece missing

Photo restoration and rebuilding a face with a piece missing

In this close up crop of a photo, a grade 3 restoration, the nose and eyes are almost completely gone.  There is no reference photo for the missing eyes and nose. This restoration was performed by taking what little information there was and teasing it out to complete the picture. A patch of skin tone was first applied to the nose area and then shaded in to match. The tiny piece of the eye was cut and enlarged and flipped and then using the eye lines and pupil the missing eye was slowly rebuilt. The nose was built from the existing nose texture and then shaded and blended the texture.

There is no magic wand for a photo restoration like this, it is time and care that makes a face with a missing piece become whole again. It can sometimes seem that the final outlay for such a small amount of damage does not equate and that the effort that is put into restoring old photos is harder to appreciate.

If you have a photo with a piece missing and need some photo restoration, check out my main photo repair page for more details on how I can help you and how you can hire me.

I was truly delighted with the photo restoration achieved by Image Restore. The 90-year-old photo was badly damaged, particularly around the facial area. By the time Neil had worked his magic, you wouldn’t have known it wasn’t in original condition. The work was turned around very quickly and communications were excellent throughout. Highly recommended.” L Davis 1st May 2010