I prefer to scan my images for restoration where possible but with this one, it simply wasn’t an option…..for two reasons;
The image was presented to me while on holidays. I didn’t have access to my scanner or computer and even if I did it would have involved removing the image from the deeply matted frame it has been housed in for approximately 80 Years. Here within lies my second dilemma. On close inspection, I noticed that there was barely a section of the image which did not have emulsion peeling away from the fibre base of the image. Some of the emulsion appeared bubbled. The original image was so fragile. If I did attempt to remove it from the frame it may very well have resulted in further damage. Removing an image such as this from a frame is the type of job best reserved for a conservator or specialist framer.
Making the most of available resources, I re-photographed the image using available light, black fabric to reduce reflections from the large frame and a borrowed tripod, I then set upon the task of restoring. This involved a great deal of cloning, healing, burning and dodging. Like most things, the best results are achieved with time and patience…certainly the case here.
Thank you to the Green Family for trusting me with this image. It was a challenge but absolute pleasure to restore.