Fluorescent probes are becoming ever more widely used in the study of subcellular structure, and determination of their three-dimensional distributions has become very important. Confocal microscopy is now a common technique for overcoming the problem of out-of-focus flare in fluorescence imaging, but an alternative method uses digital image processing of conventional fluorescence images — a technique often termed deconvolution or restoration. This review attempts to explain image deconvolution in a non-technical manner. It is also applicable to 3-D confocal images, and can provide a further significant improvement in clarity and interpretability of such images. Some examples of the application of image deconvolution to both conventional and confocal fluorescence images are shown.