Much of what I do is actually making my DH's dream come true. No, not THAT dream (although I do :-} ), but since he was a young man, he wanted to be a photographer. He is, and a good one, and I spend my days preparing his work for uploading to the lab, sometimes giving it a bit of a wow factor that is best done post-photography. Like this from a boudoir sitting for a Christmas gift for her hubby. All well and good.
But I have carved a bit of a niche out for myself in our business, and that is restoration work. I truly love doing it, even if some things I get make me smack myself in the forehead and question my sanity. I'm allowed to do that; you are not.
The sidebar work is a good example. SuzyG brought it in for a relative. The original image is about two by two, round, and had to be wedged out of a snowglobe, of all things. There is not a centimeter on it that doesn't have damage, from bad creasing to crazing of the finish. I said I could do it, blow it to about a 5x5 and make it look better if not perfect. They were able to provide another image of the father in the shot, so I could use it for reference and to lift the lower face, which was completely obliterated in the photo.
It's a small representation here, and it certainly wouldn't stand up to a wall portrait sizing, but I'm pleased.
I also got this in recently...a 16x20 of a model for the Hecht company. I think it dates from the late 40s, maybe early 50s. The gentleman that brought it in is from a shop that we photographed for one of the magazines for which we do work. It was the grandmother of a friend of his, and he wanted the same size, as well as a smaller print. This was much easier work, although there was a lot of edge damage, discoloration and tons of flyspecks and dustmarks to remove. See what you think. Wasn't she lovely?
It's wonderful getting to restore someone's memories to the depth and vibrancy they originally showed. Now this lady's image is preserved for generations to come.