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First retouch

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Old 07-19-2006, 10:46 AM
ehasler ehasler is offline
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Location: London, UK
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First retouch

Hi all,

I've just joined this site after looking through a number of very useful and informative posts.

I've used some of the information I've seen to help me do my first proper (i.e., more involved than cloning out dust spots!) retouch here:


The PP involved the following steps, mostly in Photoshop CS2:

Colour balance, and other colour settings (done in Raw Shooter)
Removing stray bits of hair
Removing blemishes on the skin, and specks of makeup
Whitening the eyes
Small amount of dodging and burning to remove hot spots
Smoothing out the skin
then finally a slight crop to improve the composition

It took me about 3-4 hours to do, although some of that was spent reading up on various techniques in Scott Kelby's Photoshop book, which I've found to be very useful as a beginner.

Thanks in advance for any comments
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Old 07-19-2006, 10:53 AM
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Godmother Godmother is offline
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Very natural

I'd love to ee the original
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:39 AM
ehasler ehasler is offline
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The original is here

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Old 07-19-2006, 12:06 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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ehasier, welcome to RP.

i dont do a lot of fashion retouching so i'll let the fashion retouchers reply about skin texture and things like that. but, i do buy fashion magazines from time to time just to see what they're doing. and regardless of what might be 'fashion' i can tell you that the image is a bit flat. it lacks luster, brightness. most of the fashion shots tend to have the model in fairly bright light unless there is an express reason for not doing so. so, my biggest notice on your image is the brightness is lacking on the model.

and, just as a preferences thing, i'd increase the lip color or saturation on the lips and maybe smooth out the paint a bit more.

i'm attaching an image here to show what i mean. ignore the lack of anti-aliasing and artifacting, please. this was done very quickly just to give an example.

Attached Images
File Type: jpg Face_Painting_005-1-k-1.jpg (93.4 KB, 68 views)
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:33 PM
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NancyJ NancyJ is offline
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Without seeing the original its hard to comment on how well you've done so I'll stick to giving me thoughts on the finished image as a 'product'.

Overall its a good clean image, no obvious signs of retouching but it lacks a bit of 'punch'. It has the look of a clean, profession studio portrait but the composition and subject demand so much more.
I've attached a REALLY quick (2 mins) rough of a punchier version.

Her pores are also very harsh - particularly on the makeup parts - it makes her skin look rough and is not attractive. I know there is a bit of an obsession with pores lately - it seems to be the new fad but something that seems to be oft forgot is that pronouced skin texture is a sign of age and large pores are associated with greasy teenage skin. A number of cosmetics companies sell 'pore tightening' creams as a beauty product.
Children have tight smooth skin, as we get older our skin gets looser and 'battle worn', when we enter puberty our pores open up and exude grease (mmm sexy) and its downhill from there.
Only on a tight beauty shot should you be able to pick out individual pores. On and head and shoulders there should be indication of skin texture and anything further back they should be almost invisible. Smooth skin is GOOD, its perfectly airbrushed/blurred that should be avoided.
The lips also need work, you can see they are dry and she has a bit of a 'barrier' between the wet and dry parts of her lips, you should try to make them look a little more plump and succulent - kissable.

Edit: I see Craig posted pretty much what I said - was doing other things so this post took about 30 mins to write
Attached Images
File Type: jpg oomf.jpg (57.4 KB, 65 views)

Last edited by NancyJ; 07-19-2006 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 07-19-2006, 03:14 PM
leuallen leuallen is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 145

You have the basics down pretty good. but as others have said the image is flat and lacks punch. I suggest that you go to

and go through some of the video tutorials. They are very well explained and will help you with color balance and tonal balance.

The attached images are how I would handle this image. There is actually very little work with the skin: mostly techniques as found on radiant visita. The left image is normal, the right is a stylized variation based on the first.

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File Type: jpg Face_Painting_LL.jpg (98.6 KB, 54 views)
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Old 07-19-2006, 05:23 PM
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PatrickB PatrickB is offline
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Hi Edward,

yes I agree, the image needs a bit poppin' there

Some things I noticed:

The skin holds a lot of black ink for a person of her tan.

The eyes were too white. Overall it was a very good job with the eyes, besides two tiny things The iris was looking fake with that painted lighting. You should only light it that the lighting (what a sentence) doesn't become really visible but makes those eyes stand out. Also the eye-white, it was just too white. Tone it down a bit but the sphere-effect (Eyes become darker towards the edges, that's what 99% of all people keep ignoring) is great!

Guess that's it for the moment
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File Type: jpg untitled.jpg (77.0 KB, 47 views)
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Old 07-20-2006, 12:30 PM
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creeduk creeduk is offline
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Yes that are elements that we can find, I could list a few but mostly these are personal elements, or based on somebody else's work. You have to have your own style as well as do the basic job. I like the edit, not over the top as so many retouches are it respects the original.

That said this is an area for critique and most have offered some valid points. for me the eye is a little too white but thats about it without getting very picky.
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