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To Restore, Or Not To Restore?

That is the question when digitally reproducing your old photographs, paintings, or artifacts.

When reproducing historic artifacts, one must ask themselves if they are trying to digitally restore it to its original state or just recreate its current state of preservation. We get requests to identically match, partially restore or to fully restore an artifact when reproducing historic works. Museums usually request a reproduction to be identical to the original. Private owners and collectors base their decision on personal preference and purpose of use.

When reproducing artifacts for museums, artifacts are usually reproduced identically to the original in their current state. The main use of digital reproductions in museums are to put on display instead of the original. This extends the life of the original artifacts.  Because the reproduction is on display, the original artifact can be kept in cool dry storage. This way it can last for many more years than if left on display.  Many people do not always know this because if the reproductions are done right they look identical to the original.  And, this fact is not necessarily something a museums wants to publicize.  They don’t intend to ruin experiences for patrons, they intend to preserve our historic artifacts for future generations.

Document repro sampleWhen reproducing artifacts digitally for private owners and collectors we get the full range of requests.  We  get asked to match originals identically, partially restore or completely restore them to their original appearance.  Digital restoration can allow one to see how a deteriorated heirloom may have once looked.  Or like museums, it can allow you to put the original in cool dry storage to have for future generations displaying the reproduction instead. Or, As seen in the picture to the left, the second side of a two sided document could be framed along side the original for full viewing.  These are just a few of the uses for digital reproduction of historic artifacts.

Among the many reasons to reproduce an old or historic artifact, preserving them for many generations to come is the most important of all.  Preserve your heirloom artifacts today. We are Northern Virginia’s leader in digital photo restoration.

OTE minor retouch sample