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

Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

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  #1  
Old 08-07-2008, 03:26 PM
D ROCK898's Avatar
D ROCK898 D ROCK898 is offline
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Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

Alright, here is the deal. I just had my senior pictures taken and to save a little bit of money, I told my mom that I would be able to edit them. I come to find out that it's harder than I thought. I'm pretty new to retouching pictures because I'm more of a graphic artist so, I don't have much skill when it comes to restoring pictures and touching them up. There is a professional photography business here where I live called "Candace Ann" that takes and edits some awesome pictures. I have looked at so many tutorials and ways to touch up my pictures, that I'm almost sick of doing it....(not really, I just want them to look good). So my question or questions are:

1. What are ways to touch up my senior pictures to have them look like the ones done by the professionals at Candace Ann here in my town?
2. What am I doing wrong with my pictures?
3. Whatever else I need to know that you can help me with.

The website to Candace Ann is www.candaceann.com (and I want my pictures to look theirs!! haha.) Also since my pictures are taken at high resolution, I cant size them down yet due to the fact that it might cause printing problems. So I put them in a .rar file and there hosted on www.filefront.com. The rar file is 84 and some odd mb's so I'm really sorry about the size amount. So here is the link:

http://files.filefront.com/Senior+Pi.../fileinfo.html

Thanks guys!

Last edited by D ROCK898; 08-07-2008 at 03:31 PM.
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  #2  
Old 08-07-2008, 03:58 PM
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Swampy Swampy is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

Welcome to RTP, D Rock.

I have a question. Did you purchase the rights to your photos? You may run into legal problems if a professional photographer took your photos then you scanned them or pulled them off the web and expect to retouch them. They are the intellectual property of the photographer until the professional releases all rights to you.
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Old 08-07-2008, 04:42 PM
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MisterJP MisterJP is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

Whew, that was a big folder.

First of all, Candace Ann is a skilled photographer and I'm guessing a majority of her look is obtained with a camera and lighting. Sure, there's some Photoshop work, but starting with a solid photo is key. But there's enough to work with here to make some improvements.

The biggest issue I see is contrast . . . your shots are rather flat, even underexposed. Punching up the contrast using Levels is a start. A little retouching of blemishes, evening out the fleshtone, adding a vignette and adding a grunge border gets the look closer to what Candace is doing.

Check out the attachment to see what I mean. This was literally done in 2 to 3 minutes.

mjp
Attached Images
File Type: jpg B4_After.jpg (97.3 KB, 211 views)
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Old 08-07-2008, 05:15 PM
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D ROCK898 D ROCK898 is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Swampy View Post
Welcome to RTP, D Rock.

I have a question. Did you purchase the rights to your photos? You may run into legal problems if a professional photographer took your photos then you scanned them or pulled them off the web and expect to retouch them. They are the intellectual property of the photographer until the professional releases all rights to you.
Thanks and yes, I know the photographer....she's a family friend. She gave me a CD with all the picture on it ad let us pick the ones that we liked and therefore let us do whatever with them.

MisterJP, thanks for the tips. I'll have to get working then, lol. Also as in the Photoshop work....is airbrushing needed like the ones in Candace Ann or does that make pictures look too fake?
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  #5  
Old 08-07-2008, 05:16 PM
Aleksman71 Aleksman71 is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

If you want bigger one ,please tell me.

http://shrani.si/f/3b/r0/2dEFfxTS/1/...7-ret-smal.jpg
http://shrani.si/f/2t/h0/3OyVlq70/img7046-ret-smal.jpg
http://shrani.si/f/I/LB/qENDkDg/img7184ret-.jpg
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_7037 ret smal.jpg (46.6 KB, 61 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7046 ret smal.jpg (66.7 KB, 71 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7184ret .jpg (83.1 KB, 39 views)

Last edited by Aleksman71; 08-08-2008 at 11:05 AM.
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  #6  
Old 08-07-2008, 09:46 PM
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hawkeye60 hawkeye60 is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

There are infinate possibilities, you have to choose the look you want on each picture and then ask how best to acheive it.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_7184.jpg (99.8 KB, 55 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7192.jpg (99.7 KB, 66 views)
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  #7  
Old 08-09-2008, 12:52 PM
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Verywierd Verywierd is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

As hawkeye60 said, you can do almost anything if you start with a well exposed and good sized image. Candace Ann seems to like strongly saturated images, while there is also a current trend towards desaturated, high contrast images. I did a high saturation version somewhat like Candace's style as an example.

The attached image was created by:
1. Individually adjusting the brightness, contrast and saturation of each area (leaves, stones, clothes etc). I used a commercial plugin for Photoshop, but you can use adjustment layers and masks to do the same thing.
2. Increased the colour saturation of the clothing even more by copying the individual colours onto a blank layer and applying as an overlay, using a mask and layer opacity to control the effect.
3. Created a black and white duplicate layer, adjusted contrast to taste, and applied as an overlay to sharpen and increase contrast. Used a mask to control burn out and overly dark shadows by painting on it with black or white brushes.
4. Adjusted overall brightness and contrast to taste.
5. Minor clean up of skin with clone and heal tools.
6. Applied border effect. Again it was a commercial plugin, but there are lots of freeware actions and masks on the net.

I really pushed the saturation and contrast, so it may look strange if your monitor is calibrated differently from mine.

Let me know if you want the full sized image.
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File Type: jpg IMG_7046-a-900.jpg (88.5 KB, 80 views)
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  #8  
Old 08-11-2008, 08:28 AM
evestar6 evestar6 is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

I agree with what was stated before...the candaceann photos are much more contrasty than your photos. Your photos are flat with a blue tint, but that is an easy fix. Using either levels or curves. As far as the retouching the skin to smooth, you can take it as far as you want. I think some of her files are too smooth, looking almost fake but that may be the look the customer wanted.
I'm giving an example of an image I did a little work to, it took about 5 minutes I know I didn't see any B/W images on the candace site but I thought it gave this image a nice feel. Good luck and have fun with your photos.
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File Type: jpg IMG_7124_ec.jpg (103.0 KB, 38 views)
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  #9  
Old 08-11-2008, 10:10 AM
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swarbees swarbees is offline
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Re: Achieving This Look? HELP!!!

I think the smoothing in senior photos is something a lot of people like. I ran this through neat image which blurs many of the imperfections and takes out grain or noise which gives the photo nice clean finish and then like the others adjusted color and levels.
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File Type: jpg IMG_7205.jpg (198.1 KB, 51 views)
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