Originally posted by Wrabbit2000
reply to post by ProjectJimmy
If I might ask and perhaps learn something...What is it about this which convinces you that is a natural and genuine effect of age on the tinting and
degradation? I am in the process of scanning photos from my father's estate from the 70's and some are off, most are not. Most are as clear as I
could ask for a digital scan source to be. I do have a few that look like this, though.
We also aged and distressed images in a photo course I was in for the Spring semester as part of my graphics degree program. I pick up the dedicated
Photoshop classes next month, so I am certainly curious in more than a passing way. Thanks!
The aging effect here, the overall red coming over the photo, the lighter tones washing out and the areas around the darker tones becoming darker with
a slight purple tone to them are all common and well known things that happen in the C-22 and C-41 processes with older films over time due to the
dyes used in the coloration. The example shown here in the OP is rather extreme really, but not out of the ordinary. These systems were used in the
development of snapshot photographs, and a variant of C-41 is still used today. You're absolutely right that some will weather and some wont almost
at random it seems. I'm not positive of why this is myself actually, but really the best thing you can always do is to scan your negatives as you are
doing. Over time all negatives using those processes will deteriorate, it's just a matter of when.
There is some debate over newer C-41 processed negatives, from the 1980s and later, as we don't yet know how well they will hold up compared to those
before then. They should be better, and last at least a while longer before degrading but scanning is always your best option. Note though too that
the Kodachrome K-14 professional process was different, and films that use that are much more resistant to degradation. Still a good plate hard drive
will always last longer than film.
As for aging photos, it is very possible, and it's also possible to restore most damaged negatives to look far better than they do on their own.
What is harder to do though is superimposing images from two old negatives to look the same. Which is what we are talking about here. As you noticed,
they age differently and every shot has slightly, if not majorly, different aging qualities.
There are a lot of programs and Photoshop actions now to make digital photos look "vintage" by adding in aging, but this one, if it was aged, was
done absolutely expertly and with incredible care to perfectly mimic the look of the exact process. If this image is comprised of two superimposed
vintage shots, with the time and precision needed to make the image, it's highly unlikely that the hand would have been left in by accident.
Especially when it would have been very easy, as you'll find in your Photoshop class, to put the "correct" hand in.
We live in an age of absolutely incredible photo manipulation technology, and that is why I say that I cannot outright say this is a hoax, but only
that it is far more likely given what I see and what we assume we know about the motivations of the people posting it, that it is instead just a
matter of the degradation instead of a conspiratorial plot.