Photo restoration

CONTENT WARNING: This post contains some strong language and concerns domestic violence.

Can Deep Learning™ algorithms fix the focus, my hand was shaking? Somehow soften this shard of December afternoon when the sky was white and smoke’s everywhere? Please erase the nausea of cicadas. Do anything with HIM sitting shirtless in triumph on a fold-out chair in the bush one wild drive down this fire trail for miles. Erase HIS glare that says without saying ONE FUCKEN WORD AND… Loosen the hand that’s a fist after a morning of drinking announces ‘FAMILYS GOAN FOR A DRIVE’.

Is there some routine to soothe the mouse, the eye now closing? Swipe back over tears, fully repair the smacked ear that doesn’t work anymore and SHOULD’VE BEEN MORE CAREFUL WHERE YOU WALK. Twenty years gone and we look at HIM through the wrong end of that long telescope of Time. HE’S still down there glaring back at us. 

Image: by Matthew Paul Argall, c/- Flickr. A prosery piece for Dverse, where Kim is hosting and asks us to use D.H. Lawrence’s quote from his poem Hummingbirds: ‘we look at him through the wrong end of that long telescope of Time’.

In this context, Deep Learning is a process where AIs are trained by looking repeatedly at millions of photographs to be able to adjust and improve, and even restore photographs. Algorithms from Deep Learning are probably already on your smart phone helping us take snappier snaps. Here’s one example.

And for your listening pleasure, here’s the late great BB King with Hummingbird from his album Indianola Mississippi Seeds (1970) (I remember first hearing this in my high school days waaaay back).

18 thoughts on “Photo restoration

  1. Brilliant writing and peripheral supports. No matter how slick humans think they are with their machines, there are some purposes to which machines will always be useless.


  2. Fascinating information on Deep Learning, used to tell a dark tale indeed. The colourisation site is really interesting – there’s something spooky about seeing well known b/w images with the colour injected back in.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I wonder, now that AI can improve and restore photos, could it, in the future, improve and restore our memories. Your piece made my stomach churn, and I couldn’t stop grinding my teeth. I have similar memories. It’s amazing how particular sounds can affect us; you captured that so well in ‘Please erase the nausea of cicadas’. The ‘smacked ear that doesn’t work anymore and SHOULD’VE BEEN MORE CAREFUL WHERE YOU WALK’ is so close to the bone.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Peter, powerfully written, and the pain resonates. For me it was not my father it was my mother and it was in physical abuse it was extreme mental and emotional abuse. If that is your story that you laid out here that I have empathy and sympathy for you well written.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hopefully this is fiction… a response to a prompt… artfully poignant response… but not your father or your mother! Yes, the pain resonates and the use of capitals is powerful. “Objectional words” important to paint the dreaded picture of a sorrowful human who inflicts his pain on others. Great job taking the prompt and running with it!

      Liked by 1 person

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