Creative photo restorations provide dramatic new look for Welsh Slate – transforming the head office environment for visitors and staff

Welsh//Slate is the world’s leading manufacturer of high quality roofing, architectural and aggregate slate products. The company urgently needed a set of 13 Enviro graphic panels to dress corridors and staff areas at their head offices in North Wales in time for a client visit. The slate quarries in Wales have been supplying the world with high quality roofing and other materials for over two hundred years so the panels needed to balance the history and tradition of the industry with the company’s modern day projects. To add to the challenge, seven of the panels were to be produced from historic photographs that had badly deteriorated over the years.

Having worked alongside Welsh//Slate on the creation of a new web site Quiet Storm clearly understood the image the company wanted to portray. But when the old photographs, still in their original frames, arrived at the studio the extent of the task was clear. All the pictures had faded in varying shades of yellow/blue and sepia. How could these images be quickly transformed into a uniform quality that could sit alongside the other panels that would be produced using top quality digital images? Quiet Storm devised a solution.

Overhead digital pictures were taken of the faded photographs using a new camera and a new £550 lens. This provided the best possible reproduction of the original photograph.  Each image was then carefully retouched and colour corrected to ensure consistency. The improvement was dramatic and resulted in a new set of sharp black and white photographs, depicting slate craftsmen at work and the quarrying process. 

To complete the display, six full colour panels were created from digital images already held on file by Quiet Storm. These demonstrated how the Welsh// Slate product had been incorporated in high profile building and refurbishment projects such as London’s St Pancras Station.

Welsh//Slate was delighted with the end result. The dramatic display transformed the appearance of the offices and the project was completed in just seven days.

Managing Director Alan Smith said: “When we asked Quiet Storm to create the photographic display for us we realised that the required timescale was ambitious but the team rose to the challenge. We had a set of faded old photos that were gathering dust in a corner of the office but really deserved to be appreciated by a wider audience. The new set of prints gives visitors to our Head Office an understanding of our heritage while the modern photographs are shining examples of how our product can enhance buildings both traditional and modern.”

Commenting on the design and creation of the new Welsh//Slate website Alan Smith added: “Quiet Storm took the brief and came up with a clean and stylish concept that gives exactly the right impression of our organisation to visitors. The site is working well for us, we are very pleased.”

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