photograph showcase

Photograph Showcase: Joseph Skeen as a Young Man

SKEEN, Joseph as a young man
Joseph Skeen


This portrait of my 2nd great-grandfather Joseph Skeen was well-loved!  My copy is a photo of a photo that I found in my grandmother’s collection.  It looks pretty rough:


SKEEN, Joseph as a young man, original unedited scan


The damage is to the original, not my copy, so I can only guess what the splattering is from.  Because this photo is one of so few images of Joseph, I took my time and really cleaned it up.  I knew it would take a while and I would get bored (shhh! don’t tell Joseph), so I broke it up and spent about 12 minutes at a time.  Here is my editing progression:



Surprisingly, his suit coat was the hardest part.

The back of the photo doesn’t offer any information about the photo date or occasion:


SKEEN, Joseph as a young man, photo back


What a treasure!  I am so grateful for the privilege of being the steward of so many family treasures. ❤️



Two quick updates:

1 — I recently shared a portrait of Joseph when he was older and the discovery that he was blind in one eye.  I couldn’t find any information about that beyond the WWI Draft Registration.  His grandson, my grandpa’s only living sibling, called me recently and I (thankfully) thought to ask if he knew about Joseph being blind in one eye.  He did.  He shared that Joseph lost his sight in one eye when someone threw a snowball at him that had a rock in the center.  He couldn’t recall any other details including how old Joseph was when this happened.  Joseph must have been very forgiving as he didn’t write about this incident and its effects on his life in his rather long personal history.

2 — The same Uncle, and a few of his cousins, helped me with an update to the labeling on this photo.


Happy Thursday, I hope you will scan a share a favorite family photo very soon!  xoxo


8 thoughts on “Photograph Showcase: Joseph Skeen as a Young Man”

  1. Amazing editing job, Amberly! What program do you use? I have tried to “fix” similar flaws with no luck. But I don’t have your patience!

    1. Thank you, Amy! I use an outdated copy of Photoshop. It took a while to learn how to use it (it is not user or beginner friendly at all!). But it’s pretty fast for me now. This photo was an exception of course. It was so completely covered with that white splatter it took a long time!

      I like to listen to a talk every day from General Conference (a world-wide church meeting that happens twice each year over two days) so I used that time each day to work on editing this photo. It made it less of a chore. 😉

      1. Someday I will have to work on that skill. Right now I just use the filters on various photo programs to sharpen and lighten or darken the images. When I try to remove a spot, I usually end up with a blob of color somewhere that looks worse than the spot!

        1. Well, on Photoshop it is pretty easy once you get the hang of it. There is a spot healing tool that is essentially a circle that you can make any size you want. You cover the spot you want to change with the open circle and then click (you need it to be set to “content aware”) and the program fills in the area with something that matches the area around it. It’s not perfect, I often have to undo an edit and alter the size of the healing tool if it tries to add the wrong color or something like that. There is also a lasso tool that you can use to select a larger or oddly shaped area and use the fill feature set to “content aware.” It’s pretty awesome!

          1. One of my editing programs has that function, but somehow it always picks up the wrong color. So, for example, if there is a spot on a face close to an eyebrow, it will use the fill from the eyebrow instead of the skin. Hence a bigger worse mark! But I may just need to invest in a better photo editing program.

            1. That is a common problem, it takes some practice to learn how that function will respond. Zooming in and using a smaller size for the circle can help at times. But you might be right, it could be a limitation of your program. Photoshop is crazy expensive for a reason. Although, you can’t buy it as a program anymore, you have to pay for access which I hear is far less expensive, but since the copy I own does what I need, I am happy to not have another subscription to something. 😉

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