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Photo Retouching "Improving" photos, post-production, correction, etc.

To BLUR or not to BLUR

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  #1  
Old 12-03-2007, 09:11 AM
kevin thompson's Avatar
kevin thompson kevin thompson is offline
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Question To BLUR or not to BLUR

I was told by a "High-end" photographer/retoucher that you NEVER blur an image. It destroys skin texture, smoothes everything out and gives a plastic, not natural look. Making up skin texture is also no good because it does not look like real skin texture.

I was also told that a lot of NYC photographers still shoot film. I am not a camera expert but it seems to me digital cameras give you that smooth look to begin with.

The tutorial for the "Dior Look" is great but it relies heavily on the blur and I am not sure you can use that technique everywhere.

There are ways to do the job without blurring but that is time consuming.

So I am confused and looking for opinions on the use of blurring.

Is it OK to have blurred images with made up skin texture in your portfolio? Or should you keep looking for the best originals to avoid the blur all together?
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Old 12-03-2007, 09:42 AM
Ant Ant is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

Don't blur.

High end retouching takes time. High end retouching does not utilize blur.
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Old 12-03-2007, 09:45 AM
edgework edgework is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin thompson View Post
I was told by a "High-end" photographer/retoucher that you NEVER blur an image. It destroys skin texture, smoothes everything out and gives a plastic, not natural look. Making up skin texture is also no good because it does not look like real skin texture.
What you are describing are uses of the blur technique that create a mess. If you try to fix everything by blurring, you'll fix nothing and and everyone will say, "Ah, blurred skin. Never works." As with every technique and tool, the trick is to hide your tracks. If they know you were there, you lose.

Quote:
There are ways to do the job without blurring but that is time consuming.
I find that a job never consumes any more time than what is required to do it right.

Quote:
Is it OK to have blurred images with made up skin texture in your portfolio? Or should you keep looking for the best originals to avoid the blur all together?
What you want are the best images you are capable of producing, images that someone can look at and think "I'd like to be able to do that," or better, "I'd like to hire him to do that." If you accomplish this, it's no one's business how you got there, and if you do it consistently, no one will care.
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Old 12-03-2007, 10:02 AM
Ant Ant is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

FYI, there is nothing high end about any tutorials here. Do not look to do high end work from things you find on this website or others.
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Old 12-03-2007, 11:37 AM
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Benny Profane Benny Profane is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

well, that dodge and burn thing floating around is a "high end" technique, but, yeah, not a whole lot else.

Don't blur. Unless it's a special case, and they want some weird look, which I've seen. But, 99% of the time, grab a coffee, put on the headphones, and get to work. You get paid by the hour.
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Old 12-03-2007, 01:20 PM
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Sweetlight Sweetlight is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

Maybe I am missing something but are we talking "blur" as in the sense of a way of removing blemishes and such or "blur" as in a Hassellblads #3 Soft Focus?
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Old 12-03-2007, 08:56 PM
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kevin thompson kevin thompson is offline
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Red face Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

I appreciate your answers. They confirmed what I was told. One ad can take 60+ hours to do with edits and composited elements. That is a different world than what is on this website. Hopefully I can get there someday.
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Old 12-04-2007, 12:29 AM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

i agree that you shouldn't blur or at least be able to hide your blurring, but as you can see in the link i have posted it does happen and for some very big names..not every project you get your hands on will have a big budget...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/45178172@N00/2086220420/
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Old 12-04-2007, 02:28 AM
keiserjohn keiserjohn is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ant View Post
FYI, there is nothing high end about any tutorials here. Do not look to do high end work from things you find on this website or others.
I agree with Ant to some extent. The tutorials here are not high end. But still if
you learn them you will get a deeper understanding of how you can use Photoshop to get the effects you wan't.
You don't have to follow them step by step, but more understand the idea behind it all.

You simply have to take the best of each tutuorial. And do it your style.

Look at magazine covers, study the ads. And then try to create the same effect.
And blurring is almost never an option. Dodge n'burn, spot removing. Are things you will come a long way with.
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Old 12-04-2007, 04:16 PM
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Markzebra Markzebra is offline
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Re: To BLUR or not to BLUR

... and proper dodge and burn , or L and D as its sometimes called over here is not THAT time consuming when you get good at it, how refined the result depends on how many passes you make.
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