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Retouch Critique!

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  #1  
Old 04-04-2008, 02:56 PM
Insensitive. Insensitive. is offline
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Retouch Critique!

http://i29.tinypic.com/oubc4j.png


Let me know what ya thinK!
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  #2  
Old 04-04-2008, 04:00 PM
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Swampy Swampy is offline
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Re: Retouch Critique!

Hi Insensitive.

The eyes are striking.
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  #3  
Old 04-04-2008, 06:28 PM
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Tom K Tom K is offline
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Hi Insensitive;
I like the shot in the middle the best.
What surprises me the most is that you left the freckles in...
Tom
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Old 04-04-2008, 07:49 PM
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Sweetlight Sweetlight is offline
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Re: Retouch Critique!

Notice the last few months of runway models, freckles are in and all the rage this week.
I happen to like em too, always have...
I like the work.
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  #5  
Old 04-04-2008, 08:09 PM
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Re: Retouch Critique!

I think freckles are beautiful
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  #6  
Old 04-04-2008, 09:23 PM
Photoshopman Photoshopman is offline
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Re: Retouch Critique!

Hi everyone. This is my first post, so I will try to be gentle. By way of introduction, I am a professional photographer and have been a Photoshop user for over 12 years, and currently use CS3. I have been teaching Photoshop for over 8 years now and know a thing or 2 about retouching faces.

To me, the most important aspect of retouching is that it should look realistic. A late mentor of mine, referring to traditional retouching often said that if something looks retouched, the artist didn't do a good job. Retouching should be invisible and realistic looking. The biggest mistake retouchers make is in overdoing it. I have been reading through the forums for a couple of weeks now and have been looking through this thread. I find one common trait in many retouchers and that's the tendency to over whiten eyes. Sometimes teeth as well.

Insensitive, I think you did a great job and if I were the customer, I'd be ecstatic. I would like to offer a couple of observations that I think will take a good job and make it even better. Please bear with me. I've been told I can be longwinded

Looking at the images, I actually think an ideal finished image should be somewhere between "After" and "After#2". It appears that you increased the contrast to add punch to the image. Great idea, but I'd back off a little. Look at her shirt and pearls and specular highlights on her face and forehead. The shirt lost detail, as did the pearls. Her face got very shiny looking as a result of pushing the highlight contrast too far. To me, the bright spots on her face look shiny and greasy. Again, if you back off just a little, it would be perfect.

The whites of the eyes are too stark and white. Again, better than the original, but I would back off a little to make it more realistic. I actually like the skin tone of "After #2" a little better, but would like to see it a little more saturated, but not quite as much as "After"

In cases where increasing highlight contrast causes bright highlights (like the blouse and pearls) to blow out, I usually like to paint on a layer mask to restore the detail back.

As I said, good job. A definite improvement over the original, but if you back off a little, it'll look so realistic, you wouldn't even know it was retouched. It would just look like a great image.

Hope this helped. As I continue to get my feet wet, I'll try to post some more and eventually get some of my samples up.
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  #7  
Old 04-04-2008, 09:55 PM
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Re: Retouch Critique!

Im an artist, and the photo was meant to look like artwork, almost humorous, i was going for like a 50's barbie look. Not the cover of vogue, the photographer loved it. But thanks so much for putting time and effort into that post instead of slapping it with an "thats ugly" I didnt use contrast, i used a hi-pass layer. And i took the redness out of her eyes, i didnt know they looked too white.
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  #8  
Old 04-04-2008, 10:12 PM
Photoshopman Photoshopman is offline
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Re: Retouch Critique!

I would never slap anyone with a "that's ugly" comment. That's just counterproductive. I always try to put myself in the place of the person being critiqued. When I was an up and coming photographer, I used to enter a lot of images into competition. You would be amazed at the level of insensitivity displayed by some of the judges. Talk about having the wind knocked out of your sails!

I think if you had mentioned the look you were going for, I would have understood what you were trying to do. But that's ok.

I love using the High Pass filter. Can I assume the 2 versions were different blending modes? I would almost guess "After" was Overlay and "After 2" was Soft Light. How close was I? I usually use High Pass to help out of focus images. But in any event, since it's on a different layer, if you need to back off a little on the level of contrast it caused, you could always back down the opacity of the High Pass layer. I'm sure you knew that. I'm just mentioning it for the benefit of others who are reading this.

As for why the eyes look so white. Probably due to the contrast caused by the high pass filter. Either that or my monitor is too contrasty. I'm on a new computer and it's my first LCD flat panel. I love CRT's because once calibrated, I can really rely on them. These flat panels, even after calibration tend to be a little on the contrasty side. So I have to keep that in the back of my mind and apply a mental "fudge factor" when I correct images on this monitor so I don't over or under-do it.

Anyway, great job. Nice to meet you. I'm sure we'll get to talk more in the future.
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2008, 01:07 AM
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Nanls Nanls is offline
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Thumbs up Re: Retouch Critique!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Photoshopman View Post
I would never slap anyone with a "that's ugly" comment. That's just counterproductive. I always try to put myself in the place of the person being critiqued. When I was an up and coming photographer, I used to enter a lot of images into competition. You would be amazed at the level of insensitivity displayed by some of the judges. Talk about having the wind knocked out of your sails!

I think if you had mentioned the look you were going for, I would have understood what you were trying to do. But that's ok.

I love using the High Pass filter. Can I assume the 2 versions were different blending modes? I would almost guess "After" was Overlay and "After 2" was Soft Light. How close was I? I usually use High Pass to help out of focus images. But in any event, since it's on a different layer, if you need to back off a little on the level of contrast it caused, you could always back down the opacity of the High Pass layer. I'm sure you knew that. I'm just mentioning it for the benefit of others who are reading this.

As for why the eyes look so white. Probably due to the contrast caused by the high pass filter. Either that or my monitor is too contrasty. I'm on a new computer and it's my first LCD flat panel. I love CRT's because once calibrated, I can really rely on them. These flat panels, even after calibration tend to be a little on the contrasty side. So I have to keep that in the back of my mind and apply a mental "fudge factor" when I correct images on this monitor so I don't over or under-do it.

Anyway, great job. Nice to meet you. I'm sure we'll get to talk more in the future.
Nice critique Photoshopman.
I was thinking the same thing... somewhere between After and After #2. Of course that was based on the (lack of) information given on the intended outcome. When someone ask "Let me know what ya thinK!" they should expect that there are going to be a range of responses. Honestly I have seen people ask for critiques on images much the same and they were not aiming for "artsy" they were just learning. Since artsy retouching is subjective and many times we are given direction from creative directors or photographers who "have a vision" it is hard to critique an image without knowing all the facts. Nice of you to take your time to give your solicited opinion in a very professional manner. Keep it up!
~Nancy
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  #10  
Old 04-05-2008, 09:49 AM
Photoshopman Photoshopman is offline
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Re: Retouch Critique!

Thanks, Nancy! That means a lot to me. At least I got off on the right foot.

This looks like a nice community of pros and I hope to make some meaningful contributions in the future.

Have a nice day.

Gary
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