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Request for comment

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Old 07-06-2012, 07:24 AM
miraclestyle miraclestyle is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 4
Request for comment

Hi everyone,

I am an amateur photographer/retoucher.

I would like a professional opinion on this image.
I am already aware that this image falls short on matte extraction (regarding the technique), but I would like to know what else fails (and not only technically but artistically as well).

I consider it my best post-production work so far, and I have spent a lot of time working on it.

I have used following software to process this image (this is probably irrelevant, but I will post it anyway):

Ubuntu 12.04 - operating system,
RawTherapee - raw image converter,
GIMP 2.8 - for retouching and compositing,
Blender 3D - for rendering background image and God Rays effect around the subject.

Thank you in advance.


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Old 07-06-2012, 03:48 PM
Mike Needham's Avatar
Mike Needham Mike Needham is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 543
Re: Request for comment

Sunglasses? Really?

As you say some of the masking is off, I like the highlight work, although it is extreme, I see what you were going for.
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Old 07-07-2012, 04:40 AM
kav kav is offline
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Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 575
Re: Request for comment

The head is a bit dense compared to the body. It gives the impression of a bad comp there. His right pec feels off compared to the rest. The brightness makes it feel like a tan line issue. I might go slightly closer in color/tone between pecs and abs. The background shouldn't feel so out of focus given his proximity to it. I'd model it out a bit further so that it feels like something is actually there. Right now it just feels like a graphic. Some texturing wouldn't hurt. Right now I feel like you're throwing it out of focus because it has nothing, yet the pants are in focus, and you've got a very sharp edge to him. I'd just like it to be a little more consistent in that regard.

In spite of the highlights on him, if it was really diffracting around a background object, you'd have a little more spill on him too, especially around the lats. Of course adjusting the background might help the feel of that too. It just needs some measure of consistency. I'd like to see the tattoos pop a bit more, but that's just me. More detail in the gloves and pants would be nice. They're very bright in the shot which makes them visually demanding, but the lack of detail makes them a bit flat. The gloves could be matched to the color of the pants a bit assuming the pants are more important. Right now the pants are a bit more green.

I could go on with this for a very long time and produce a list of everything I'd change, but it would be my opinion and not necessarily what you should do. I actually do like some of what you did here, but if you're trying to seat him in the scene, there are many areas where it could be improved. Even the sunglasses feel a bit flat. I realize body lotion is probably used to make him that shiny. This is typical with bodybuilders. It looks like it was also accentuated in post, but it's odd to see that weird highlight shape in the center of the forehead then nothing in the glasses. An abstract highlight representation would work, but I'm probably being too picky.
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Old 07-11-2012, 02:53 AM
miraclestyle miraclestyle is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 4
Re: Request for comment

Mike, glasses issue is a good point! During photo shoot we have made photos without glasses as well. However, the subject appeared more formidable wearing glasses, and the image seamed to look more unusual. So I ended up with this photo.

Kav, I must recall a statement that someone made in regards to visual arts skills, and it goes something like this: "'s all about training your mind and providing it with knowledge to use in treating visual input from your eyes...", and your mind is certainly well trained and knowledgeable. In your comment you've referenced at least two different fields of knowledge (physics and human anatomy) that I could use to improve my visual processing. Thank you for that. Regarding the highlights, I was merely following existing highlights/shadows with d&b, that's all. Obviously that isn't always enough. As for the background's focus I was aware that I am doing it wrong but was kind of forced to do it that way. I have used Gaussian blur with gradient mask in GIMP to cheat out-of-focus situation. Setting up realistic out of focus in blender was easy, and I did it by configuring camera aperture and focusing on the subject. However, I have never rendered the background since it would take ages to do it on my Dell laptop.

Thanks for taking your time to comment.



Last edited by miraclestyle; 07-11-2012 at 02:59 AM. Reason: Adding more info.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:08 PM
plugsnpixels's Avatar
plugsnpixels plugsnpixels is offline
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Re: Request for comment

He looks like a standard Russian bad guy in a comedy/drama... ;-) I think the sunglasses do that to him, while the pose makes him very similar to Jackie Chan but not quite. I still wouldn't mess with him though.
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