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Beauty Retouching Help

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  #1  
Old 08-29-2007, 02:11 AM
Gregory Storm Gregory Storm is offline
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Beauty Retouching Help

Hi. This is my first post. I found out about this site through Model Mayhem reading a post on beauty retouching. I like this site.

I'm a photographer and up to this point I've done my own retouching. Now I'm starting to take beauty shots and since I'm aiming for magazine ad campaign level of quality, I want to make sure I'm applying the best techniques to accomplish the task.

As I take more beauty shots, I'm starting to notice something. Women, especially blondes, have hair on their faces (see example below).

I like showing the person as close to who they are a possible, but after looking at some beauty ads in Vogue I realize I need to go a little further.

Here is the original full resolution (2.87MB) photo at www.gregorystorm.com/retouchpro/beauty_059.jpg. And this is my original pass that I sent to the model. http://www.gregorystorm.com/retouchp...beauty_059.jpg. On my second pass I'm going to remove the mole, the forehead vein, and the couple fly aways on the top right.

Here are my questions:

1.) Is there a better way to remove the little blonde hairs other than one strand at a time with clone or heal?

2.) When do you know when to stop retouching beauty shots?

Thanks,

Gregory
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  #2  
Old 08-29-2007, 02:26 AM
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Damo77 Damo77 is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Hi Gregory, welcome to the site.

Usually I don't take those fine facial hairs out completely, just tone them down a bit (ie blurred layer on top, reduce opacity).

A couple of things I notice about your photo:

1) the odd pinkness on her lower eyelids - perhaps she's really like that, I don't know, but I'd probably un-pink them a bit.

2) The clumsy way your cyan background (in the jpeg) meets her skin - particularly at her temple and neck. Be careful to make sure that looks natural.

Actually, this photo raises a question I've pondered before. If you're shooting somebody at 3/4 angle, and you only have enough depth of field to make one eye sharp, not both, should it be the front eye or the back eye?

I would say the front eye is more important. You've managed the tear duct in one eye, and the eyebrow in the other. In my opinion, that's a bit of a drawback to the photo, but I'm keen to hear what others think.
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:32 AM
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Alison Alison is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Hi Gregory,

I think Damo is correct. You seem to have somehow got the near eyebrow out of focus which makes the image look a little out of whack. I've added my version below that isn't finished but what I did was use gaussian blur, add mask, and use balck to transparent - what this has done is put the rear eyebrow and eye a little out of focus. I could then use the burn tool on the closer eyebrow to emphasis it more.

Here are my questions:

Quote:
1.) Is there a better way to remove the little blonde hairs other than one strand at a time with clone or heal?
I ran my copy through neat image and lowered the layer opacity till I liked what I saw.

Quote:
2.) When do you know when to stop retouching beauty shots?
When it looks like what the client wants, or you feel satisified that you have achieved your goal - or never
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File Type: jpg beauty_059-copy.jpg (79.2 KB, 839 views)
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2007, 08:44 AM
Ant Ant is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Poor Greg. He thinks he's in the right place, but .....no.

Last edited by Ant; 08-31-2007 at 06:51 PM.
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  #5  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:10 AM
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chillin chillin is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

An interesting post from that forum:
"Anthony Rhoadesphoto.net patron, Aug 07, 2007; 04:11 p.m.

Bottom line. You want your images to look like Harpers Bazaar and Vogue images, you pay a high end retoucher to make them that way. Doing it yourself will get you in trouble. retouchpro specifically will get you in loads of trouble... it's about as pro as Sears Portraits"

"http://photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg?msg_id=00M1wS"
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  #6  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:18 AM
Ant Ant is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

LOL @ chillin
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  #7  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:23 AM
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chillin chillin is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

--- LOL @ Ant
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  #8  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:25 AM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ant View Post
Poor Greg. He thinks he's in the right place, but .....no.

example of an ad beauty retouch: http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=6148797&size=lg

Dodge and burn.
very nice, any chance of seeing the before shot?
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  #9  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:32 AM
Gregory Storm Gregory Storm is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damo77 View Post
Hi Gregory, welcome to the site.

Usually I don't take those fine facial hairs out completely, just tone them down a bit (ie blurred layer on top, reduce opacity).
Thanks Damo.

I've done that before on other photos, but that didn't seem like a good idea with these close beauty shots because the loss of detail in the skin. If I were do to that here I would overlay a high pass layer of skin to put back texture.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damo77 View Post
A couple of things I notice about your photo:

1) the odd pinkness on her lower eyelids - perhaps she's really like that, I don't know, but I'd probably un-pink them a bit.

2) The clumsy way your cyan background (in the jpeg) meets her skin - particularly at her temple and neck. Be careful to make sure that looks natural.
Yeah she has a lightness to her eyelids that can be toned down. I agree that the neck could be masked a little better. How do you key out your backgrounds?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damo77 View Post
Actually, this photo raises a question I've pondered before. If you're shooting somebody at 3/4 angle, and you only have enough depth of field to make one eye sharp, not both, should it be the front eye or the back eye?

I would say the front eye is more important. You've managed the tear duct in one eye, and the eyebrow in the other. In my opinion, that's a bit of a drawback to the photo, but I'm keen to hear what others think.
Normally you would want to focus on the near eye, but doing that can sometime cause focusing problems depending on the color of that person's eye, so focusing on the near duct is safer.

Since this was my first dedicated beauty shoot, I was experimenting. The problem with this shot is a low aperture. It was shot at f/4.0 which is way too low for this type of photo because of the depth of field. I should have shot it at f/8.0 or above. Other shots were shot at much higher apertures.

Thanks again,

Gregory
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  #10  
Old 08-29-2007, 09:41 AM
Gregory Storm Gregory Storm is offline
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Re: Beauty Retouching Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alison View Post
Hi Gregory,

I think Damo is correct. You seem to have somehow got the near eyebrow out of focus which makes the image look a little out of whack. I've added my version below that isn't finished but what I did was use gaussian blur, add mask, and use balck to transparent - what this has done is put the rear eyebrow and eye a little out of focus. I could then use the burn tool on the closer eyebrow to emphasis it more.

I ran my copy through neat image and lowered the layer opacity till I liked what I saw.
Hi Alison,

I like what you've done, but it looks more Dave Hill to me. Using any blur seems like the opposite of what I'd want to do to make a beauty shot pop. Bringing the near eyebrow back in focus is less of a problem for me because I have other shots to take a sharper eyebrow from. What is neat image?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alison View Post
When it looks like what the client wants, or you feel satisified that you have achieved your goal - or never
Yeah, unfortunately that's what I thought. Never. :-)
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