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TrainPixs Network's
Equipment Guide for Railfanning

| digital cameras & acc. | 35mm cameras & acc. | medium & large format cameras & acc. | how to | clothing | misc |

How To: Process Your Scans
By Nathan Chidester — Webmaster (
16-Jan-2005 @ 18:00

Once you have scanned your prints, slides or negatives you will need to digitally process the files, for use on the World Wide Web (news groups included) or for your printer, using a photo manipulation program such as Adobe® Photo Shop or Paint Shop Pro. For this article, I will be using Adobe® Photoshop CS on a PC but Photoshop is also available for Mac.

READERS NOTE: I will be using bracket parentheses '[' and ']' for shortcut keys, for example [ALT] is the ALT key on your keyboard; [ALT]+[L] in a case of multiple keys being pressed at the same time while [ALT]+[I][I] represents holding down the ALT key while pressing the 'I' key twice.

After you have either scanned your image(s), will need to load your photo manipulation software and open your image(s) by either [CTRL]+[O] or by selecting FILE > OPEN. Select your image by clicking the appropriate file(s) (in some programs (including Photoshop) you may select more than one file at a time by holding down [CTRL] and, left-clicking with your mouse, selecting of your files.)

If you have a photo that is sideways or upside down you may need to rotate the image by 90° or 180° by either selecting IMAGE > ROTATE (CANVAS) > 180°, 90°CW (clockwise), 90°CCW (counter-clockwise); or by [ALT]+[E]+[9] (for 90°CW), [ALT]+[E]+[0] (for 90°CCW), or [ALT]+[E]+[1] (for 180°).

If the photo still seems to be unbalanced or slightly off level you can easily fix that problem by selecting IMAGE > ROTATE (CANVAS) > ARBITARY or by [ALT]+[E]+[A]. You might have to work with this for a while, take note that 'CW' stands for clockwise and 'CCW' stands for counter-clockwise.

If you image needs to be cropped, use the marquee tool and select the area which you want to keep, after you have selected the area that you want select IMAGE > CROP.

If your image seems to be either too light or dark open the curves dialog by [CTRL]+[M], and try AUTO or [ALT]+[A]. Drag the center of the curve up or down if the result is too light or dark. Click OK or cancel if it hasn't worked.

Also, you can open the levels dialog by selecting IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS > LEVELS or by [CTRL]+[L], and try AUTO or [ALT]+[A]. Use the sliders to adjust the levels of color that will be shown. Alter the center triangle in the levels if the picture is too light or too dark. Most prints and screen images are improved by setting the output levels to around 12 and 240. Play around with this feature, it has saved many photos that would have not otherwise been used.

Use the Clone tool to remove dust and scratches with a small brush to clone subject matter of similar density and color into them. Change the clone source frequently for long scratches.

Correct the color balance of color images [CTRL]+[B] or use IMAGE >ADJUSTMENTS > COLOR BALANCE or VARIATIONS. Convert your black & white images into Grayscale by selecting IMAGE > MODE > GRAYSCALE or [CTRL]+[I]+[M]+[G].

You can then save the image(s) by three different ways:
  a) replacing the original files with the new file by FILE > SAVE or [CTRL]+[S].
  b) saving the files under a new file name by FILE > SAVE AS or [CTRL]+[SHIFT]+[S].
  c) saving the file for the Internet by FILE > SAVE FOR WEB or [ALT]+[CTRL]+[SHIFT]+[S].

For printing, use IMAGE > IMAGE SIZE ensure the resample box is not checked and after the resolution to give the required size. Generally the resolution should be 300.

For use on the Internet, adjust the size in pixels (depending on what you are using the image for, it should be no larger than 1024 pixels large), select the appropriate file type (jpg, jpeg, gif, tff, etc.). Select progressive for JPEG images and renaming it using less than 15 letters, numbers and symbols. Remember only use the keys A-Z, a-z, 0-9, underscore ('_'), plus/minus sign ('+'/'-').


| digital cameras & acc. | 35mm cameras & acc. | medium & large format cameras & acc. | how to | clothing | misc |

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Last Updated: 01-Jan-2010