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

making a living

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  #31  
Old 02-04-2010, 09:31 AM
doctorontop doctorontop is offline
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Re: making a living

Quote:
Originally Posted by toan thai View Post
i think i started a little too late to be fully on my feet. only time will tell
Hopefully somebody wise will push work your way. You have a strong book I wish you all the best
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  #32  
Old 02-05-2010, 05:58 AM
Quantum3 Quantum3 is offline
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Re: making a living

Woudl be faster doing a poll?
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  #33  
Old 02-19-2010, 04:54 AM
zganie zganie is offline
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Re: making a living

From KR1156,if you're looking to do this as a career, put in the time and do it 120%...don't do anything half-assed.
I dont Know BUT if I was going to put in all kinds of crazy hours learning Something and Spend money on DVDs or Books which are not cheap,I would want to Know;
AT LEAST THERES A POSSIBILITY OF MAKING A LIVING
Just plain common sense
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  #34  
Old 02-19-2010, 02:36 PM
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Amanda_Lauren Amanda_Lauren is offline
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Re: making a living

I make a living retouching and teaching retouching at a corporate company in NYC. I work 40 plus hours a week. It took me about a year and half to get this job after receiving a BFA. I got my first real retouching gig at a small studio in the meatpacking district only a year after college. I will tell you though, it was hard work.

No one hands you these kind of jobs. I take tutorial after tutorial, read book after book, and ask a ton of questions constantly. I do research on other companies. Trying to understand the business. You have to have the drive and ambition.

When I was in college, I was an photo major and a teacher once told me if you don't eat, breathe and sleep with your camera your never going to make it.

I never understood that and thought it was an unfair statement, until I found my nitch in retouching. She is right, I eat breathe and sleep retouching, I never did with my camera. It's kind of sick, but I've learned that if being successful is important enough to you (and to me it is), you will find the resources to MAKE IT HAPPEN. Its completely what you make of it.

I am young still, but all the hard work that I have been putting in on my own time even, is paying off even at my current job. And I am just getting started.

So yes, you can make a living. Its completely what you make of it. (in my opinion)
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  #35  
Old 02-19-2010, 03:36 PM
KR1156 KR1156 is offline
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Re: making a living

i put in my time, i been in the advertising / photo. business since i was 19. went to school for a year, it wasn't for me. got an internship which turned into full-time employment and I haven't worked a week less than 40 hours since then. i put in 2000% percent bc i knew i wanted to do retouching at a high-end level and wouldn't settle for less. i had conrad from this forum take me under his wing and flush me of all the crap that people teach on the internet, and show me the right way to do things. he helped develop my eye and business mind as well. Ant from this forum took me under his other wing a few years later and really pushed me further on some extreme highend techniques and, aesthetics, more importantly. Now i'm in a very good spot, working on a wide variety of big name jobs, managing some pretty big campaigns and making a pretty good living as well. here in nyc, a good retoucher makes 6 figures annually.

go for it. and best of luck to you if you do.
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  #36  
Old 02-19-2010, 09:27 PM
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Benny Profane Benny Profane is offline
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Re: making a living

Quote:
Originally Posted by Amanda_Lauren View Post
I make a living retouching and teaching retouching at a corporate company in NYC. I work 40 plus hours a week. It took me about a year and half to get this job after receiving a BFA. I got my first real retouching gig at a small studio in the meatpacking district only a year after college. I will tell you though, it was hard work.

No one hands you these kind of jobs. I take tutorial after tutorial, read book after book, and ask a ton of questions constantly. I do research on other companies. Trying to understand the business. You have to have the drive and ambition.

When I was in college, I was an photo major and a teacher once told me if you don't eat, breathe and sleep with your camera your never going to make it.

I never understood that and thought it was an unfair statement, until I found my nitch in retouching. She is right, I eat breathe and sleep retouching, I never did with my camera. It's kind of sick, but I've learned that if being successful is important enough to you (and to me it is), you will find the resources to MAKE IT HAPPEN. Its completely what you make of it.

I am young still, but all the hard work that I have been putting in on my own time even, is paying off even at my current job. And I am just getting started.

So yes, you can make a living. Its completely what you make of it. (in my opinion)


Amanda, take it from an old man. Put the stylus down, push the nice chair back, and get out more. I'm assuming that you live in one of the coolest cities in the world, with too many things to do and too many people to meet. Don't throw this time away by ignoring it. Work will always be there, but, you never know, Trump may finally develop central Park, and then, how's that going to play when you have to explain that you never biked or rollerbladed the loop in your young days. If anything, there is such a wealth of visual art within a mile radius of the Empire State building to see for cheap, that you can justify that kind of museum and gallery hopping as a professional education. Don't get me going about the bars and music.......

I looked into the eyes of a photographer at 3 am one morning when I was an assistant many moons ago, and got freaked out. He was a dude who worked ALL THE TIME and considered good marriage and family relations buying his wife and daughters lot of fur and shiny happy things. Hey, they seemed to like each other when I saw them together every three months or so, but I decided that I didn't want any part of that life. It's not as glamourous as a lot of people think. NYC is full of people like that, just working all the time.
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  #37  
Old 02-19-2010, 10:29 PM
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Amanda_Lauren Amanda_Lauren is offline
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Re: making a living

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
Amanda, take it from an old man. Put the stylus down, push the nice chair back, and get out more. I'm assuming that you live in one of the coolest cities in the world, with too many things to do and too many people to meet. Don't throw this time away by ignoring it. Work will always be there, but, you never know, Trump may finally develop central Park, and then, how's that going to play when you have to explain that you never biked or rollerbladed the loop in your young days. If anything, there is such a wealth of visual art within a mile radius of the Empire State building to see for cheap, that you can justify that kind of museum and gallery hopping as a professional education. Don't get me going about the bars and music.......

I looked into the eyes of a photographer at 3 am one morning when I was an assistant many moons ago, and got freaked out. He was a dude who worked ALL THE TIME and considered good marriage and family relations buying his wife and daughters lot of fur and shiny happy things. Hey, they seemed to like each other when I saw them together every three months or so, but I decided that I didn't want any part of that life. It's not as glamourous as a lot of people think. NYC is full of people like that, just working all the time.

LoL. Aw. Thats very sweet actually. I appreciate your words of wisdom.
If it makes you feel any better, I have NOT neglected the unique lifestyle of nyc. I love nyc. Its fabulous here. But now its all about my career.
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  #38  
Old 02-20-2010, 12:23 PM
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nycretoucher nycretoucher is offline
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Re: making a living

I have been working as a full time retoucher for the past 20 years. I work in a retouching studio that is a sub division of a printing company. Though we accept all work for retouching, not just what's being printed at our facility.

I started working for a printing company back before computers were so heavily used and worked as a dot etcher (for anyone that even knows what that is) color correcting on the actual four color films using an assortment of techniques.

There are times when retouching is either slow, or all current projects are out being reviewed by the clients. When that happens I keep busy, and valuable to the company, by working with the Assembly team assembling files in InDesign, Quark, Illustrator and ripping them using Prinergy and Nexus workflows. Uploading PDF X1a's to various web portals or FTP sites. Whatever needs to be done until the next retouching project comes in or returns from the client. I have even been known to pick up the broom and mop from time to time.

Sure, I would love to just sit there and retouch all day and do nothing else, but in all honesty, and in this economy, it takes more than that if you want to stay employed. You have to do whatever needs to be done, be flexible, and don't be snobbish about doing things "beneath" you. When things slow down, and companies look to start laying people off, you don't want your name on that list. One employee that can do anything is much more valuable than 3 employees that can only do one thing each.

Be aggressive, when hired as a retoucher, try to learn everything. Learn how to change the materials in the proofing devices, learn Desktop Publishing. If there is nothing to do on a Monday morning, grab some Windex and clean the stations, monitors, and keyboards. Grab the broom and sweep up a little, maybe even mop a little. Of course, don't be doing this while there is work in the shop, they aren't paying you all this money to clean the floor. But definitely stay flexible and useful.

Hope this helps. Good luck!
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  #39  
Old 02-20-2010, 03:10 PM
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abenormal abenormal is offline
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Re: making a living

Sorry I didn't raise my virtual hand sooner, I haven't been checking in on this site much lately...

I am a full time pro retoucher working in NYC. I also fill in as a photographer when the staff photog is out sick or on vacation.
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  #40  
Old 02-20-2010, 03:44 PM
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Nanls Nanls is offline
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Re: making a living

Quote:
Originally Posted by toan thai View Post
until two weeks ago, i was a full-time retoucher at a stock photo studio. economy is bad so i got laid off. now i am trying to freelance but having a hard time landing any gigs. it's real tough when no one knows you
Have you tried staffing agencies such as Aquent? We get our freelancers that way.
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