Restoring Faded and Discolored Photos

Restoring Faded and Discolored Photos

If you have old photos stored in boxes, or even albums, you’ll probably notice that many have become faded, discolored, or dull over time. In this tutorial we are going to look at a few different PaintShop Pro tools and techniques you can use to restore or adjust the color in older photos that have become faded or discolored. This process can also be applied to newer photos that just seem dull and need to be brightened up.

Download a PDF copy of the written tutorial and sample images to follow along with the video below.

Restoring Faded and Discolored Photos in PaintShop Pro

In this tutorial we are going to look at a few different tools and techniques you can use to restore or adjust the color in older photos that have become faded or discolored. This process can also be applied to newer photos that just seem dull and need to be brightened up.

Open PaintShop Pro in the Edit workspace.

 

Here is the first photo we’ll restore, which has become faded over time.

 

If you’d like to compare the restored version to the original, choose FileSave Copy As. This creates an identical image file, which you can then open in PaintShop Pro, and place the two images side by side in the workspace. To see your two images together, go to the Window menu and choose Tile Vertically. Then you can resize and reposition both image windows as you like.

For the first fix, go to AdjustColorFade Correction. Be sure to check Preview on Image, so that the effect of the tool can be seen on the image itself. Adjust the amount of correction; for this image, a value of 25 brings back a lot of the original color.

Next, go to AdjustOne Step Photo Fix. This tool performs several functions at once: increasing brightness, balancing color and saturation, and overall sharpening.

 

For the final step, go to AdjustHue and SaturationHue/ Saturation/ Lightness. In this example, the zero value for Saturation and Lightness seem fine. But you can carefully adjust the Hue – increasing this value by clicking the Up or Down arrow makes a significant difference. In this case, reducing the Hue to -5 produces a nice result.

 

Here is the final result:

For the second example, we are going to use this image, which has become discolored over time.

 

We’ll perform the same three steps that were used on the previous image. First, we will use Fade Correction– a value of 50 does a nice job.

 

Next, we will apply One Step Photo Fix (found under the Adjust menu) and then open the Hue/ Saturation/ Lightness settings (also under the Adjust menu) and adjust the Hue to -8. This brings out some of the reds in the more neutral tones.

With these 3 tools we’ve been able to get rid of the red discoloration and brighten up the photo nicely.

Thanks for watching! We hope you found this tutorial helpful and we would love to hear your feedback in the Comments section below. And don’t forget to visit our social media pages and show us what you’ve learned by sharing your photos, videos and creative projects with us.

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Comments (2)

  • Albert Pretorius Reply

    Why can i not get 2 photos on my work space at the same time

    June 22, 2018 at 4:06 am
    • gilliandarby Reply

      Hi Albert,

      To display 2 photos in the PaintShop Pro workspace, go to the Window menu and uncheck Tabbed Documents. Then you can resize and reposition the images to display them side by side as in this tutorial.

      Hope this helps!

      The Discovery Center team

      June 22, 2018 at 7:47 am

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