Line Fading

salute cel
small salute screen capture

The severity of the line fading is obvious when you compare the cel as it is now with the screen capture of what it looked like under camera.

Many collectors dislike the way the outlines fade over time. Unfortunately for series that had their outlines photocopied, it will eventually happen to all cels. There have been various methods proposed to slow down this process. The main ones are to keep the cel from being exposed to UV light (or any light for that matter). Another method involves keeping the cel in a situation where it can breathe - avoid sealing it up somewhere airtight. It is also a good idea to keep the layers (if they are still separate) protected in separate cel bags to prevent future sticking.

For those cels that are already damaged and faded there are a few options. The ideal would be to take it to a restoration artist who can recreate the lines by painting them on an additional cel layer. This can be expensive though, and as an alternative some collectors will commission a fan cel artist to do the same thing. The main difference will be in the experience of the artist and the type of paint or ink that they would use.