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new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

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  #1  
Old 03-29-2005, 01:20 PM
mcacioppo mcacioppo is offline
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new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

hello
i just signed up for this site, and was wondering if any working retouchers here are in the nyc area. im curious to hear what kind of buisness they do, if they freelance or are on staff or have their own studio... how competitive it is, etc. i currently have a 9-5 at a commercial photo studio in nyc, digital imaging tech , half processing and half retouching basically. i recently have started getting some freelance side work, and want to eventually get more high end work, in fashion or advertising, etc. and just want to hear other peoples experiences working in the nyc market in this part of the industry.

thanks!

m
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  #2  
Old 04-19-2005, 12:02 PM
Little Fish Little Fish is offline
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Ditto

I too am new to this site and am in the NYC area. I'm a manager at a digital photography studio and have been trying to get more freelance work on the side as a retoucher. I eventually would like to leave the digital photography studio and work exclusively as a retoucher, but am not certain how to get started. It seems difficult to get a portfolio together that would cater to a high end market in NYC. I would also like to hear any advice from those of you who have been working in the field.

Thanks,
LF
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Old 04-19-2005, 09:18 PM
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cricket1961 cricket1961 is offline
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I am a retoucher in NYC for the last three years. It is very competitive, but there is plenty to go around. Judging by the retouchers applying for a job at the shop I work at, there are a lot of retouchers who are not really ready for prime time. So if you are good at what you do, there is plenty to do.
I also do a lot of freelance. It is everywhere out there folks. And for the same reason above, employers are willing to pay for good people.
Check Craigslist.com. They usually have a good variety of ads for retouchers, both freelance and perm.

Good Luck!
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Old 04-29-2005, 12:48 PM
Ant Ant is offline
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3+ years in NYC. Been freelancing about half the time whilst employed full-time and otherwise. Advertising, beauty and fashion are the main things I do, but a still life once in awhile is a nice change. I work out of my apartment, but if and when I move to brooklyn and get a loft or to Jersey City and get a brownstone, I'll have a studio in Chelsea.

I'm not, nor do I wish to be this busy, but a friend of mine averages $15,000/month as a freelancer and she lives 9 blocks from me.

There's plenty of money to be made if you are indeed good and have a good eye for color and a real attention to detail. The problem with most people who call themselves retouchers is that they haven't a clue what good retouching is or have an overabundance of poor taste. A strong background in photography, input and output (traditional and non) is essential.

A retoucher in NYC averages 70-120k a year.

Last edited by Ant; 04-29-2005 at 03:15 PM.
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  #5  
Old 10-02-2005, 05:39 PM
yonac yonac is offline
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Yonac

Hi all...

I am a full-time professional retoucher/image-editor for print media working for a premedia-prepress department of a large company in New York City since 1997.

I believe that there are more retouching jobs in and around NYC. Worst thing is; many photoshopper claims themselves as a retoucher. Become a photoshop jockey and a retoucher are totally different avenues, if you feel that you are a retoucher for a print media, below information is for you;

If you are good but not a superstar retoucher, you can command $ 40.00 to $ 60.00 per hour as a permelance retoucher (full-time freelance job without benefits), or around $ 80,000.00 to $ 100,000.00 per year+benefits as a full time staff retoucher. But if you are a really good retoucher with high budget clients, you can command $ 150.00 to $ 300.00 per hour as an independent freelance-contractor retoucher. A superstar retoucher can command even more $$$ per hour, depends client, budget and complexity of a project.

If you are a less experienced but skilled retoucher; around $ 30.00 per hour rate for a long time freelance projects, around $ 40.00 to $ 60.00 for a short time freelance projects is a good starting point in NYC.

Good luck all...

Yonac


http://retouchnyc.com

yonac@mac.com

Last edited by yonac; 10-02-2005 at 09:02 PM.
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  #6  
Old 10-05-2005, 11:18 AM
emarts emarts is offline
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Wow, I had no idea that that much money was available. I at one time was getting as high as $125.00/hr (here in Northern NJ), but there seemed to be a boom in Photoshoppers and suddenly that kind of money was hard to find. Many of my long time clients asked me to cut my hourly rate if I wanted to continue to work for them. They suddenly had a pile of resumes they can choose from.

I guess after 14 years in the business, it's time for me to seek out work in the big city. Must be easier now with FTP and all. For those of you freelancing in the city, how often do you find yourself going to your client's office? With the clients I have now, most come to me (I work out of my home), which is sweet.

I have a part-time retoucher job now, so it would be hard for me to go into the city. but I'm considering it anyway.
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Old 01-03-2007, 07:01 AM
Lithodia Lithodia is offline
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Re: new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

Photo assistants, (as i was once one, didnt like it decided to go toward retouching) network, there are alot of us NYC retouchers on this site, from what i see on this thread...maybe we should put some sort of networking thing together, I dont know how it would turn out, but some of us are good and can use the expertise and marketing abitlies from those who have larger connections and have been doing this longer. If anyone is intrested in trying to put something together let me know!

Alexis
lithodia70@hotmail.com
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Old 01-03-2007, 03:38 PM
KR1156 KR1156 is offline
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Re: new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

I'm also a nyc native, currently working in the advertising biz. started out as mechanical artist, but got bored with that, and turned focus to retouching full-time. With the help of a hi-end retoucher, i'm trying to build a nice portfolio...and then see whats out there. I have a lot of product, just need to build up my beauty shots.
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  #9  
Old 02-22-2007, 10:36 AM
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Little Fisher Little Fisher is offline
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Re: new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

I'm learning a lot from you guys. Because of your advice, I started to find high end fashion photographers to lend me "real" models to work on for my portfolio. It wasn't so hard to find. I've been practicing a lot and have come across a few photographers asking my rates, already. They say they really like the quality of my work. Here is where I'm scratching my head, because I'm still a beginner, and they work with seasoned retouchers. I think I'm doing a good job and am proud of the work I have so far, but I think I'm probably still very slow compared to a seasoned retoucher. (although I have no idea how long an expert takes on an image) I suppose my BFA may be finally put to good use. (I did take that anatomy drawing class). Or perhaps these photographers are looking for the cheapo way to get the job done. (I'm always a skeptic)

Here's my 2 questions for you NYC retouchers:
1) How long does it take you to work on one single high end fashion image?
(ie: in one image do this - retouching skin w/out the shortcuts-no blurring, fix wrinkled clothing, removing objects from the scene, hair masks done proper, changing body proportions, color correction to match the photographer's "style".) Seriously-it takes me 6 hours to do all of the above. I get it done right, but I feel so slow.

2)What would you charge a photographer as a beginner who is slow?

I was thinking of charging either $30 per hour or $175 per image, (in NYC and also for photographers from Europe via ftp).

Thanks again,
LF

ps: Lithodia, I think that's a great idea. I ran into these guys at an APA meeting for photo assistants...http://www.photoassistant.net/
They get together and hold seminars, tutorials for equipment, and networking events. It would be great if we had something like that in the city. Maybe we could even hook up with them. I noticed many photographers floating around at their events looking for assistants.

Last edited by Little Fisher; 02-22-2007 at 10:44 AM.
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  #10  
Old 02-22-2007, 11:33 AM
aaRonology101 aaRonology101 is offline
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Re: new here / any nyc pro. retouchers here?

ive been freelancing for a little bit now, and on my end of things, its very competitive. id love to find a studio to work for with the right consistency of work, but no luck as of yet.

ive been in and out of studio's, but none have lasted very long due to work flow. if anyone out there has any openings, or needs extra help in retouching, im all for it!!

you can email me at aaronology101@yahoo.com , and you can view some of my work at www.xanga.com/aaronology101

Quote:
1) How long does it take you to work on one single high end fashion image?
(ie: in one image do this - retouching skin w/out the shortcuts-no blurring, fix wrinkled clothing, removing objects from the scene, hair masks done proper, changing body proportions, color correction to match the photographer's "style".) Seriously-it takes me 6 hours to do all of the above. I get it done right, but I feel so slow.

2)What would you charge a photographer as a beginner who is slow?

I was thinking of charging either $30 per hour or $175 per image, (in NYC and also for photographers from Europe via ftp).
i dont think a image should take more than 3 hours to do .. and what you charge, 30 an hour/175 per image, is reasonable.

when it comes to my workflow, i use no filters, no blurs, no noise, none of taht. its all about D&B, cloning, and healing.

Last edited by aaRonology101; 02-22-2007 at 11:42 AM.
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