Creativity · Photography · Practice · Vision

The Digital “Caress”


The post was from someone I have enjoyed reading and communicating with: Sophie has devoted her life to creating innovative products that aid with spiritual growth and development.

In this post she published an image of her younger self, an open smile under the flat yellow-sepia tone of film photographs of our past.



I don’t usually correct people’s images when I see them online in media – it is my observation that people upload what they choose to, and adjusting them is sometimes a second thought.

Some of these images have degraded badly with fading, water marks, scratches and dust specks, but others think it makes them look authentic, look past the damage, or put the restoration project in the overloaded file of ‘Things That Need To Be Done – Someday.’

But I really like seeing the joy of people who have good images of their loved ones. Like an art restorer uncovering years of age and grime, I love to see the sparkle that’s been there all the time.

I experimented with a number of adjustments to reduce harshness and look within the large shadows of hair, until I got an idea of the skin color, and natural shaping of the face.

I took out the other person in the upper corner, softened harsh flash areas on her face, and added little touches of white in the eyes, teeth, and pupils. I also made adjustments in the unseen, neutral tones of skin tone and colors, deepening some and lightening others for a more subtle appearance.

I really like the intimacy of looking at faces closely, and bringing the details back into awareness. Like a remastered record from your past, you can finally enjoy these images with refreshed beauty and memory.

Although there are “auto” color and tone functions on Photoshop, I prefer to take my time with my own eyes and experience. Sometimes after it is complete, I will view it in “auto” to see how it looks. Sometimes I get pretty close! 🙂

My family has several beloved prints of my parents that have cracks in them so severe that the surface has disappeared and it will have to be reconstructed. I look forward to creating a renewed set of these favorite photos for my sisters and family to enjoy again.

I don’t consider it only restoring. It is a loving ‘digital ‘caress’ from someone who loves photos, really loves portraits, and is aware of the positive energy a good portrait of a loved one can have.



I sent Sophie the new image, with the apology of taking the liberty of changing it.

And I am honored to say that she loves it.

Do you have older and damaged images? My digital ‘caress’ can take old family and favorite images and make them bright and beautiful again. Contact me here to look to see what I can do for yours!


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