Now it's time to clean up those photos. A lot of different programs can help you do this. For about $30, you can get a basic program like Microsoft Digital Image or Photo Explosion, which will do simple touch-ups. If you're more ambitious or artistic, you can invest upwards of $600 for a more sophisticated image editor like Adobe Photoshop.
To focus in on the main action in the photos, you can cut out the edges using the Crop tool. Then you can enhance your photos by adjusting the hue, saturation, and contrast manually, or, if you don't know much about photo fixing, clean up your images with the program's automatic settings, like Auto Levels (Photoshop), Instant Fix (PhotoDeluxe) or Enhance (iPhoto).
To clean up the blemishes in your photos, use the "clone stamp" tool. It picks up details from elsewhere in the picture and lets you use those similar colors and textures to cover creases, tears, and other damage.
Some imperfections have less to do with the original photographs than the equipment you're using. Take a look at the next page to see how regular upkeep can leave you more time scanning and less time obsessing over small imperfections that your scanner has left behind.