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My first serious retouching - what do you think?

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Old 05-21-2009, 01:32 PM
MBChamberlain's Avatar
MBChamberlain MBChamberlain is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Knoxville Tennessee
Posts: 281
Re: My first serious retouching - what do you thin

Overall very nice. A couple of small notes though:

First, the devil is in the details. A single hair across the eye, a bra strap showing, etc. You need to watch for things like that.

Second, the eyes look just a bit dull. I've attached a version where I have them a slight boost.

Third, your black and white conversion looks very flat to me. Remember that when you take the color away 75% of the eye sees nothing but a wash. The rods see by contrast.

Fourth, and this isn't somthing you did wrong, just my personal preference, but I like rich colors in photos. So I've attached a 20 minute retouch I did just for funsies . (it's a quick job, so please don't flay me if I missed something.)

Keep up the good work!

Attached Images
File Type: jpg Jara.jpg (70.9 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg Layers.jpg (18.1 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg Jara-BW.jpg (88.0 KB, 21 views)
File Type: jpg Jara-mytake.jpg (99.8 KB, 25 views)
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Old 05-21-2009, 02:15 PM
jarabmx jarabmx is offline
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 37
Re: My first serious retouching - what do you thin

Definitely your eyes are much better - I usually just dodge them a bit (probly would be better to use curves layer or high pass maybe. Your version seems bit too bright to me (maybe I have slightly uncalibrated monitor) but I am missing some definition of the skin in your version. I tried to keep BW version not contrasty, rather some standard look and it could have probably been juicier.

Thanks for your advice - I appreciate it.
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Old 05-21-2009, 06:05 PM
MBChamberlain's Avatar
MBChamberlain MBChamberlain is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Knoxville Tennessee
Posts: 281
Re: My first serious retouching - what do you thin

I'm still a bit old school in that I think that black and white images should look like black and white photos. My goal in black and white conversion is to make the picture look like it was shot black and white. Spending more hours in a darkroom than you can count on a long afternoon helps with that, but the goal is to have enough contrast that the shapes are defined and clear, but not so much that it looks contrasty.

The norm in black and white has become rather flat, but for the same reason as pour grammar has become the norm, people just don't know how to do it any better.

Your black and white version compressed 84.2% of your pixels into 50% of the tonal range. This leaves you with a few hard lines, but with most of the detail itself is lost (in the shadows in this case.) Remember that visible black is 5% of the tonal range, but visible white is only 2.5%. You run a greater risk of losing your detail going dark than going bright.

Yes, in my haste I allowed some of the detail to drift from the photo, but that does not mean that the image is too bright. In fact, all it means is I needed to spend about ten seconds burning the original first. Look around at the pro photography out there, you'll notice that even "dark" images are actually pretty bright. There is a big difference between photos that look dark and photos that feel dark.

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Old 05-25-2009, 06:55 AM
DJSoulglo's Avatar
DJSoulglo DJSoulglo is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Amsterdam
Posts: 475
Re: My first serious retouching - what do you thin

Originally Posted by snook305 View Post
Also How do you keep it from Not bleeding into the edges of your selcection? In other words how do you select just the dark patches and then when you apply the curve, doesn't it bleed into parts that are close?
I do similar but by D&Bing and even then I have to go quickly back and forth in case it bleeds where it is not wanted.
Hope that makes sense.
I guess the question is, How do you get it so fine (Your selection) that is does not effect "Pixels"adjacent?
Here's the trick that I use:

Make a new layer set, set blend mode to NORMAL. In there I make 2 more layer sets : CC (colour correction) and a set for the subject.

Any color correction that you do in the CC set only affects the subject, because the overarching layer set is set to NORMAL mode instead of Pass Through.

And the reason there's more than one hue/sat layer in there is because one is set to soft light and the other one to normal.

The finished image isn't done yet, so I can't show that to you. When it's done and the campaign is out (somewhere next year) ask again and then I can show it to you. Sorry but I've signed an NDA.
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