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

The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

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  #1  
Old 12-29-2009, 05:25 AM
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Canna W Canna W is offline
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The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

Finally plucking up the courage to post in this part of the forum!

I do a lot of low end retouching for a group at flickr, where people ask us to edit their photographs for them.

I recently found a series of tutorials that give me just the techniques I wanted for facial edits - except for one thing.....the skin in my edits still often ends up looking grey and pasty. Other people's edits often have a lovely brilliance about them - clear whites and delicate rosy toning - that sort of thing. Mine on the other hand look heavy, and often very grey. I'd be really grateful for any tips to help me improve in this respect.

Here's an edit I did this morning, using a pic that was posted at sxc by Liannelaan.
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File Type: jpg RTP-GIRL-111.jpg (92.4 KB, 198 views)
File Type: jpg RTP-GIRL-222.jpg (91.2 KB, 219 views)
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Old 12-29-2009, 05:34 AM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

Quote:
Originally Posted by Canna W View Post
Finally plucking up the courage to post in this part of the forum!

I do a lot of low end retouching for a group at flickr, where people ask us to edit their photographs for them.

I recently found a series of tutorials that give me just the techniques I wanted for facial edits - except for one thing.....the skin in my edits still often ends up looking grey and pasty. Other people's edits often have a lovely brilliance about them - clear whites and delicate rosy toning - that sort of thing. Mine on the other hand look heavy, and often very grey. I'd be really grateful for any tips to help me improve in this respect.

Here's an edit I did this morning, using a pic that was posted at sxc by Liannelaan.
Let me guess.... just one radius and way too low/like 15to21?

x
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Old 12-29-2009, 05:39 AM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

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Let me guess.... just one radius and way too low/like 15to21?
I'm sorry but I don't understand that - could you contextualise it a bit please....

Basically, I used the skin tutorial here....

http://www.christyschuler.com/retouching.html
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Old 12-29-2009, 08:18 AM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

What exactly did you do? God mother's referring to the radius of the high pass (if you did suck a thing).
What work are you comparing your retouch to? Sometimes people think that all the retouch work is done with a 3 step 5 minute technique. Most of the time its a technique that takes hours. search for the Dodge & Burn technique which is the base for most of the high end work...
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Old 12-29-2009, 01:16 PM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

I think I used a high pass radius of about 11...with just one go at the high pass filter.

Below is another before and after example - more representative of the bad stuff I do... I actually thought the first one was not too bad... With the girl below I also tried modelling her face a bit, which I have done much too crudely.

I know about the dodge and burn technique, but it is not appropriate for the quick fixes we do in this group at flickr. There are also lots of other people doing quick fixes there who do it so much better than me.

I stand in total awe of high end retouches, and maybe one day I will work my way there. This stuff here is a completely different ball game....but a bit of help with it (if possible) would be much appreciated.

The model below is from sumja at sxc.
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File Type: jpg RTP-GIRL-DARK-HAIR-111.jpg (93.9 KB, 94 views)
File Type: jpg RTP-GIRL-DARK-HAIR-222.jpg (87.5 KB, 106 views)
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Old 12-29-2009, 01:25 PM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

well it might surprise you but the example you posted from flickr doesn't have any highpass technique applied to it most of what I see is healing and clone tools, and adjustment layers for contrast and brightness. The other thing is that the photos are different, the light is better on the example on flickr than both examples you have posted here... I would go with less is more to start with...
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Old 12-29-2009, 01:34 PM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

This one had a green cast to it, so just choose the green cast and brought down the intensity and and move to red a bit.
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Old 12-29-2009, 01:50 PM
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Canna W Canna W is offline
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

Quote:
well it might surprise you but the example you posted from flickr doesn't have any highpass technique applied to it most of what I see is healing and clone tools, and adjustment layers for contrast and brightness. The other thing is that the photos are different, the light is better on the example on flickr than both examples you have posted here... I would go with less is more to start with...
Thank you for coming back on this one. I'm a bit muddled. The technique I used on both these pix involves using the high pass filter. You create 2 layers with skin only on them. The lower layer you blur using surface blur, the upper layer you use with a high pass filter.

You are right about the healing tool (I used the patch tool under the eyes), and various bits of cloning. You have eagle eyes to see the latter (or I have much to learn!)

Thank you for the advice less is more. Certainly with the 2nd girl my efforts at modelling her face with light and dark are horrible!
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Old 12-29-2009, 01:54 PM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

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This one had a green cast to it, so just choose the green cast and brought down the intensity and and move to red a bit.
That is a huge improvement in her colouring. Did you do something like go to hue/saturation and decrease the saturation on the green tab, and then increase the saturation on the red tab?
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Old 12-29-2009, 02:03 PM
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Re: The skin in my edits looks pasty and grey

That would work ok, I did a color shift, color cast.

Last edited by MiningArt; 12-29-2009 at 02:40 PM. Reason: edit
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