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Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with image)

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  #1  
Old 05-21-2014, 03:46 PM
vardman vardman is offline
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Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with image)

Hi guys, I'm looking for a bit of advice/feedback/tips on retouching in general, and the retouch I've started below.

I have no experience with retouching. I have both photoshop and lightroom, however, for my needs, I've been trying to stick to lightroom. (I'm inexperienced with both) The image below was edited in lightroom.

This is a headshot, and therefore the retouching should be as minimal as possible. The problem is that the image is rather muted and the face is not lit well. I'm happy enough with the shot, but it needs fixing... without looking like it has been fixed.

Here's the image. Any tips / advice on what might help get this image halfway decent would be appreciated! Thanks so much.

http://postimg.org/image/wfkbtzahh/full/

http://postimg.org/image/wfkbtzahh/full/
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Old 05-22-2014, 03:26 AM
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AKMac AKMac is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

Is the sharpening of the left image intentional? If so, it's far too much. The image doesn't need that sort of small-radius sharpening. You mention that the image is 'rather muted' and that the face is not well lit, but you could equally describe the effect as subtle and natural diffused lighting, which defines the mood of the shot. I wouldn't do much retouching to this at all - just take out the grey area at the top of his forehead and perhaps slightly reduce the shadows below his eyes near the nose. Then call it a day - nice personal portrait.
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Old 05-22-2014, 12:39 PM
vardman vardman is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

Quote:
Originally Posted by AKMac View Post
Is the sharpening of the left image intentional? If so, it's far too much. The image doesn't need that sort of small-radius sharpening. You mention that the image is 'rather muted' and that the face is not well lit, but you could equally describe the effect as subtle and natural diffused lighting, which defines the mood of the shot. I wouldn't do much retouching to this at all - just take out the grey area at the top of his forehead and perhaps slightly reduce the shadows below his eyes near the nose. Then call it a day - nice personal portrait.
Thanks so much for your comments. I did feel that the sharpening might have been excessive. I used a preset. I've decided to avoid sharpening the image at all. It's good to hear that you think it might pass. I was just cautious that there was a lack of detail in the shot / shape of the face wasn't as apparent as I'd like. I guess that could be fixed with some selective shadowing/lighting. Happy to hear that you don't think it needs much retouching though!

If I could borrow your expertise again I'd really appreciate you taking a look at my second attempt. If you think there's any improvement - or if it's just as bad, I'd love to know! I've tried to go a bit lighter overall; I just upped the exposure on parts of the face, while brightening the image. I find the results look so different depending on the screen. I did two slightly different versions, I have both in the image below!

http://postimg.org/image/g8syvmtcl/full/

http://postimg.org/image/g8syvmtcl/full/

If you think either of these are passable, I'll just smooth out the shadows from under the eyes, and remove the mark from the lips!
Thanks so much again for your help.
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Old 05-22-2014, 12:44 PM
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lurch lurch is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

I'm confused. The two images look to be identical. At least their names are. And what's this about the 'left' image?
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Old 05-22-2014, 12:46 PM
vardman vardman is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

I posted the link twice, that was a mistake! In the image, there is a left image and a right image. Both of which are retouches of the original, which I have linked in the first post.

Sorry for the confusion!
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Old 05-22-2014, 12:49 PM
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AKMac AKMac is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

I think they're better but maybe a little too pale. But that's subjective.
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Old 05-22-2014, 12:51 PM
vardman vardman is offline
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Re: Seeking advice on retouching headshot (with im

Possibly so. I'll have a look from a few different screens. One of the problems with the original image was that it wasn't fully representative of myself, as I am, in fact, pretty damn pale!

Thanks so much again for the help.
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