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Senior photo retouch help

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  #1  
Old 10-07-2008, 10:31 AM
jenkinjc jenkinjc is offline
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Senior photo retouch help

I am very new to retouching with Photoshop. I worked as a professional photographer 10 years ago, and now am trying to learn digital photography. As a favor to a friend I took her sons senior portraits. While they are just fine on their own, I really want to make them stand out, so I am trying to learn PS. Big project! I have been doing this for about a week. Watched many of Swampy's tutorials, bought a few books, and learned by trial and error. I usually just screw everything up, and start over from scratch. This morning I sat down to try to make something usable. But... I need help. I would like to make clouds in the background of this photo, and just make it look better in general with the way the light hits off the top of the truck. This is my best try as of yet. I have some great cloud photos that I could blend but just have not been able to figure out how. I really want to learn how to do this, so tips (and step by step instructions) would be great. I am having trouble with the top of the truck and his face turning blue with the sky, since they are so light. I have tried a bunch of different things - but it does not seem to be working.

Thank you in advance! This forum has been a great learning tool for me!

Julia
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File Type: jpg Cody-Truck.jpg (99.2 KB, 125 views)
File Type: jpg retouch-Cody-truck.jpg (99.1 KB, 125 views)
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  #2  
Old 10-07-2008, 01:40 PM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

For a subtle change I cheated a little and used a 'Dragan' like action found here on your retouch... then Stamped Visible using ( Shft+Ctrl+Alt+E ) on a new layer then moved it onto your retouch and reduced opacity to about 50% (You could mask out the parts that seem too dark for you, grass, truck side etc.)
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  #3  
Old 10-07-2008, 03:06 PM
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Daviskw Daviskw is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

It's not easy...too blown out

Butch
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File Type: jpg horse1.jpg (94.7 KB, 66 views)
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  #4  
Old 10-07-2008, 05:21 PM
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skydog skydog is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

Frustration is okay...it means you are trying! It takes time...I've taken photos all my life but only into digital for the past five years. Since then I've been doing something every day...reading, practicing, doing. There is always something new to learn and try...so don't give up, and be patient with yourself...you aren't going to learn this in a week...even with Swampy's amazing tutorials. I'd start out with some basic books using photoshop...go to Barnes and Noble....there are many books written by Scott Kelby...one being 7-Point System could be a good starter. There are also sites on the web that have video tutorials you could watch...some are free (youtube for example) and some cost $. There are some very good retouchers on this forum...one can't explain it all, but if you visit often you will probably pick up a new idea to investigate everyday. In your example, you could explore: 1) the use of masks, 2) dodge & burn (I just posted a basic video last night on this site) and 3) saturation. Others may have other suggestions. Keep practicing.
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Old 10-07-2008, 08:16 PM
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

http://av.adobe.com/russellbrown/Ext...Monster_SM.mov

Here is a video which explains extraction...you can extract what you wish from your photo and paste on a nice sky with clouds.
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  #6  
Old 10-07-2008, 08:40 PM
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TommyO TommyO is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

jenkinjc,
Everyone is giving good advise. This type image is one that requires a good mask. A good mask in PS is as important as a good setup in photography; as Skydog said... patience.

Once you nail the masking, you can insert anything and make it look original. Your retouched image is pretty good and can certainly be salvaged. Even if you did not save all the intermediate work. Just overlay the original layer and bring back portions using a new mask and a soft, low opacity brush, trying different blend modes. You should get just the right amount of mix.
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  #7  
Old 10-07-2008, 09:43 PM
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Daviskw Daviskw is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

Like Tom says you need a good mask but sometimes no amount of masking can completely rescue a photo...I'm afraid this is one of those photos. Masking and adding a darker sky or using selective color to blue the background will not look completely natural because of the lighting on the truck.
If it were a very important one of a kind photo you could try painting or inserting and warping similar materials to change the overall lighting of the photo...But I think it would be very difficult.

I think you did a good job since some of the truck detail in the hood and roof are completely burned out.

I thought rather than changing the overall look I would emphasize it while reducing the back lit look of the boy.

Butch

Last edited by Daviskw; 10-07-2008 at 10:17 PM.
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  #8  
Old 10-08-2008, 12:59 PM
jenkinjc jenkinjc is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

thank you so much for all of your suggestions. I will keep working on it!

Julia
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  #9  
Old 10-08-2008, 01:29 PM
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philbach philbach is offline
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Fixing a Blown out sky

Swampy has a nice tutorial in the tutorial section about fixing a blown out sky. At any rate I used her idea and did the following:

Placed a Marquis around the sky part of the picture to select it.
Used a selective color adjustment layer above it and selected Highlights
Added cyan and magenta to the highlights
The I downloaded a clouds brush and painted the white mask with the clouds brush.

Well at any rate look up Swampy's tutorial since you may want to use it.
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File Type: jpg Cody-Truck.jpg (190.0 KB, 52 views)
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  #10  
Old 10-08-2008, 03:25 PM
Aleksman71 Aleksman71 is offline
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Re: Senior photo retouch help

Mostly done with masking technik and dodge&burne.
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File Type: jpg kid1.jpg (97.4 KB, 59 views)
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