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Old print restoration

consensus function to restore photos from multiple prints
  [vote for,

The National Archive has three separate images of Lincoln printed from the same negative: (see link) Each of the prints has age damage, but the majority of the damage is in different areas on each print.

There should be software that uses the alignment mechanism of focus stacking, pseudo HDR, superresolution etc to pick the common areas from 2 out of 3 or more aligned images, producing a composite that has all the blemishes automatically removed. (aka a '2 out of 3 consensus function')

If this exists, I can't find it. I expect a lot of 'this is already baked' followups but I've spent a day looking for this and not found anything that is exactly this product - just things that could be made to do something similar with some manual effort.

Note I am not talking about any of the other restoration techniques such as in-painting a marked area with data from other locations in the image - this is a single-function image merge program I'm suggesting, which only restores original data from multiple original prints. Other cleanup techniques could be applied later once as much of the original data is recovered as possible.

gtoal, Jul 25 2017

Images of Lincoln https://www.flickr..../72157624246586102/
Various contemporary prints that could be restored [gtoal, Jul 25 2017]

Tourist removal as suggested by [MB] http://lifehacker.c...hop-scri-1245505649
I literally did a Google search for [photoshop remove tourists] (after posting my anno, because I was that sure) and clicked the first result. Note that it is automatic and it suggests using a dozen photos. For this application I would suggest trying mode instead of median. [notexactly, Aug 15 2017]


       Hmm. This would be easy to do in Photoshop in at least two ways:   

       (1) Put the images into separate layers and erase flaws in the topmost layer.   

       (2) There's also a method (I forget the details) whereby you can take multiple shots of a scene with moving things in it (eg, a tourist hot-spot), and then remove objects that differ between shots (ie, filter out the tourists to leave only the scenery).
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 25 2017

       Yep - I've used (2) but they way they work is on TWO images and you have to manually paint over the area you want removed from one and replaced by the other. By using 3 images you don't need that manual step... Standard panorama-style blending *ought* to do this fairly easily, it's just that no-one appears to have built a custom app for this particular use-case of the algorithm.
gtoal, Jul 25 2017

       // I've used (2) but they way they work is on TWO images//   

       No, I've used it with multiple images. Something to do with a stack. If you Google "Photoshop remove tourists" or something like that, you'll find it.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jul 25 2017

       Yep, I'm familiar with that (I use photoshop) - but it's by no means automatic. Also any solution like that does not take care of blending the image - for example if one of the source images is a little darker than the other, pano/hdr style software will adjust the intensity of the patch taken from one image before inserting it in the other. And yes, you can do this with multiple images, but they're just being used as more sources of data, they're not being used to determine what pixels are common to more than one source. As I said, there are a lot of solutions that are in the right ballpark, but none (that I know of yet) that are quite exactly what I've described. (btw I also own a program called "Multiview Inpaint" which comes very close and automates most of the 'tourist removal' trick that can be done manually in Photoshop, but it is still not the fully automatic repair I'm suggesting. This may just be too much of a niche function to have been worth anyone's time to write...
gtoal, Jul 25 2017

       " This may just be too much of a niche function to have been worth anyone's time to write... "   

       Yeah .... Almost like the Halfbakery ;-)   

       Thank you [jutta].
normzone, Jul 25 2017

       No, it is automatic, and yes, it does take the consensus from multiple images. See [link].
notexactly, Aug 15 2017


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