Cleaning a photo print

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flipnflap | 18:15 Tue 31st Jan 2012 | How it Works
8 Answers
I've just taken a large photo print out of an old album because I want to frame it and hang it on my wall. But the print is dirty, I believe because some of the paper it was pressed against in the album has stuck to it. Is there anything I can use to clean this off without damaging the print at all?


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Scan it and then use Photoshop or similar to remove marks. Hope this helps if no one else knows how to clean a photo manually.
I agree with Tenrec - if you don't have a scanner, try at one of the larger Boots or Asda's.
Find a photo that you don't want and experiment on that first.
Good answer Vicasso
Yeah, vicasso, great tip; hadn't thought of it.
If the print is from the era when photographs were processed with wet chemicals, then it should stand up to being re-soaked. Taka a tray (larger than the print) and fill with cold to tepid water. Lay the print flat and keep submerged for 15 mins or so. If the paper doesn't come off on its own, tease it with an artist's soft paintbrush.

Caution 1: If the stuck paper is dyed a colour, it could come out into the print.

Caution 2: If the print is very old or has been exposed to strong UV light, the gelatin layer or the paper base may have degraded and could disintegrate when re-wetted.

Good luck.
If the photo is of great importance I would get it scanned first, then take it to a proper photo restorer.
Thanks tenrec and starmack, I'm a retired IT project manager and, if faced with the unknown, I always think...... can I 'pilot' this safely?

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Cleaning a photo print

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