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novice in need of advice

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  #1  
Old 10-03-2008, 03:18 AM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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novice in need of advice

I am a bit new to detailed editing and i am in need of advice on how to take it to the next level. Any comments good or bad are welcome, say as little or as much as you want.

If you need any more info I can be of assistance, or if this editing is beyond you, I can go into more detailed descriptions on how I edited.

All advice is good advice, if you think it’s no good then say so. But if you think so then please offer some advice on how you would make it better or offer a different technique. I thank you in advance for taking the time.

This pictures editing process:
-got rid of blemishes w/heal and patch
-Exposure - lowered offset to remove haze
-Brightness/contrast - adj
-Levels - to correct color cast
-B&D (burn/dodge) - B-cheeks :: D-under eyes, nose, dark spots
-Sample whites - to emphasize highlights
-paint - filled in nose highlight with white
-De-grunged - <L1>light surface and glosson blur :: <L2> hi-pass (vivid light, OP 38%)
-Curves - to remove harsh nose shadow
-Liquify- to remove a very slight kink in nose

I am not very good at D&B and I am unsure on how to take it to the next level. I am good, I think, at D. But my B mostly have problems, it ends up looking a bit reddish. It makes me wonder if just painting in blacks or grays would be better?

Below is a link to larger previews:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/22933397@N02/2906832665/

--Thanks for looking
Attached Images
File Type: jpg KSA_1477 small.jpg (68.7 KB, 78 views)
File Type: jpg KSA_1477 new ed 2 copy small 2.jpg (75.2 KB, 91 views)
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2008, 08:15 AM
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TommyO TommyO is offline
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Re: novice in need of advice

A brief description of the particular look you were trying to achieve may help. It certainly does not fit the traditional glamour retouch, as it is much too harsh and over-done.

Regarding your workflow.... Is this the actual order in which you performed the tasks ? If so, you may want to review your workflow and move a few steps. This may help with some of the issues with the image.

Regarding taking it to the next level... that may depend on my first question, what look you are trying to achieve. I could answer based upon a glamour retouch, but if I'm wrong on that assumption, then it's wasted typing. Let's get that answered first.
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  #3  
Old 10-03-2008, 11:18 AM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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Re: novice in need of advice

As for the type or look, I use the word "glamour"; I may be using it wrong. But basically I am trying for a smooth even tone and 3-d looking. I would even go as far as maybe calling it porcelain smooth but with detail.

You said it was over-done, this means i need to edit. What would you change or remove?

I understand the actual photo used is not traditional; I just don’t have models at my disposal. The point of this is to practice editing and develop.

Below are some photo examples,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/manelst...85088/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/2941323...91193/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/puretou...n/photostream/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/puretou...07376/sizes/o/

I think this was the order:
-got rid of blemishes w/heal and patch
-Exposure - lowered offset to remove haze
-Brightness/contrast - adj
-Levels - to correct color cast
-Sample whites - to emphasize highlights
-paint - filled in nose highlight with white
-B&D (burn/dodge) - B-cheeks :: D-under eyes, nose, dark spots
-Curves - to remove harsh nose shadow
-De-grunged - <L1>light surface and glosson blur :: <L2> hi-pass (vivid light, OP 38%)
-Liquify- to remove a very slight kink in nose

Now when it come to the actual order it was a little back and forth, I would go through one and then go back later to the adj layer and re-edit the problems found

-thanks for helping
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  #4  
Old 10-04-2008, 12:51 AM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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Re: novice in need of advice

I took what you said and edited my approch. Re-edited the whole thing.

The knowlege of the previous ed made things alot faster and smoother. After a hard eye looking, I determened there could be improvments.

I basicly did the same except in fewer and better steps:
-Fixed hole in hair, and made a cleaner bang (used patch tool)
-Retained skin color (by doing alot of basic editing within RAW conversion)
-More natual eye (copyed then unsharp mask)

I have posted my updated picture and also skreenshots of my flow B4 and new.

Tell me what you think? Better? Worse?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/2293339...91236/sizes/o/

-Thanx for your time
Attached Images
File Type: jpg KSA_1477 ed 1 skreen shoot.jpg (81.1 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg KSA_1477 new ed 3 skreen shoot.jpg (84.3 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg KSA_1477 new ed 3 sm.jpg (73.4 KB, 42 views)
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  #5  
Old 10-04-2008, 04:06 PM
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Re: novice in need of advice

The new image is certainly better than the first. And, we have to consider that this photo was not taken to be a glamour shot, and will be hard to make into one for that reason.

My biggest concern is with the workflow. I generally like to see much of the color/tone correction (stuff you did last) done first. Then do the skin smoothing, refining, D&B, etc. Then at the end, we should see a few final tweaks/adjustment layers, as well as a final sharpening. You may get much better skin toning results by reviewing and possibly changing your workflow.
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  #6  
Old 10-04-2008, 07:44 PM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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Re: novice in need of advice

I understand why you would color correct first. This would give you a better view of what your end picture will look like, then fix the problems found. i will deffinetly start trying to do this.

I also get that the picture is deffinetly not a glamor pose or ment to be a glamor picture. The flash used was an on camra flash (making things flat).

I need to find a model or someone to take the time to fake be one. then i will try this again.

I have one more question, if you were editing this picture, about how long would it take you to finnish?

If anyone elce has suggestions please voice them

-Thanks for looking
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  #7  
Old 10-04-2008, 09:02 PM
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Re: novice in need of advice

Actually, it's not so you can have a better view of how your end picture will look like. It has more to do with how the tools interact with adjacent pixels. If you color correct first, you get better results from the various tools, as the adjacent pixels' tonality better match each other. If you don't color correct first, you can get weird results from the tools and unexpected results from your color correction later. This results in frustration and poor quality retouches.

Regarding time, it can vary greatly when not under contract for a fixed cost. You could play with it for quite some time. For respectable results, the quickest may be 40 minutes.
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  #8  
Old 10-04-2008, 09:10 PM
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Re: novice in need of advice

Oh, and I forgot, I once wrote a short description of the various levels in the retouch workflow. I thought I would repeat them here for your use:

Level 1, 5-10 minutes; comes with shoot:
- remove larger imperfections, distractions.
- basic color correction.
- basic/general clean up of shot.

Level 2, 15-20 minutes, comes with shoot:
- skin smoothing.
- improve catch-lights.
- improve glare.

Level 3, 30 - 60 minutes, extra charge:
- modify skin color to add glamour, contrast.
- improve eyes, lips, overall facial features.
- improve hair.
- sculpt body, face, etc.

Level 4, time varies, extra charge:
- global changes to color, lighting.
- adding special effects.
- adding your own special/creative touches.
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  #9  
Old 10-05-2008, 10:49 AM
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Re: novice in need of advice

Looks like someone watched Christy Schuler's skin tutorials but maybe did not listen.
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  #10  
Old 10-05-2008, 12:27 PM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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Re: novice in need of advice

Jsgerman,

Two questions:

What picture are you talking about? New or first edit?

What specificly did i not listen to, what can I do to improve?
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