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1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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  #1  
Old 01-19-2009, 03:11 AM
Nutty1979 Nutty1979 is offline
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1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Hi only just joined, my names Andy, i'm 29 and work in the UK (london) I work for the Fresh Media Group, aka Coloursystems. We currently have some big magazine accounts like Emap (now called Bauer) Hachette and a few IPC titles. We also deal with websites, photography, filming, Magazines, retouching and we also have mix mag and Word magazine in house here. I work in the retouching department and would say i'm very experienced, i work on very high end stuff and low end :-) and i've never been given a job that i cant finish, I'd say i'm very creative and have a super eye for colour. Been in the industry for 11 years and have been retouching for over 7 years. I do pretty much all the covers and most fashion features for mags such as -

FHM, Zoo, Elle, Red, Heat, Closer, Grazia, Look, Max power, Arena, EVE and sometimes mix mag and word if they need something creative.
I've also retouched images for the brochures of Austin Martin, Bentley and Mazda. Also the normal in house photography shots and in-mag fashion features. I've worked on location and alongside some top photographers but feel like the nib on my wacom tablet has worn down to nothing and i need something new.

Not sure what to expect from here but just thought i'd say my bit then i can start searching on here for help and maybe help people on here and who knows what else. I've been thinking about packing up and flying to OZ for work or somewhere else over seas, been thinking about freelancing but the word scares me as i'm so used to a monthly wage packet. I'd really love to get into advertising retouching as i feel that where the most creative and high end work happens and i think i could progress in that side of the industry. Or i would also like to work alongside a photographer maybe. I've met allot of photographers that try to retouch their own work and when it gets to us its a mess and I end up crying out for the original raw file. Not saying all photographers are like that but i'm sure some would agree with me.

I've been noticing lots of people on here have a website showing their own work, that really cool. i've not designed a website in years, well over 7 years so might take me a while to get used to again but i defo need to update my portfolio.

1 Other thing, we have a sister company in india who we send all our cut-outs to, they also try to do abit of colour and simple retouching like BG extending blah blah. to put it blunt they are cr@p at it, god knows what screens they are using but the colour we get back from them is shocking. Our company are sending over people from here to help them progress, its only a matter of time they will start to understand and get better then i'll be out of a job, you cant compete with £1 an hour or what ever silly wage they get...i dread to know. But i know what i'll say if my superiors ask me if id like to go out there and help train them ;-) Does feel like i'm on a sinking ship....time to do something about it.

If you have got this far, thanks for reading my rant! time to look out for some new work or some new kind of direction.

Oh the joy of a Monday morning ! better crack on....work to be done :-)

Andy
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Old 01-19-2009, 06:44 PM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Welcome aboard, and thanks for the thoughtful post. I look forward to seeing more from you.

If you do go for your own website, don't forget to share the link here.
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Old 01-20-2009, 06:39 AM
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Markzebra Markzebra is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Its pretty tough on the freelance side at the moment Andy. There are 100's of people in the industry, far too many now really. Finding work is more of a lottery than anything else, because like you say regardless of skill and experience people are moving work to India. In the present ecomomic situation thats going to get worse. Realistically over the next few years there are a LOT of people now working as retouchers in London who are going to have to find another path - your one advantage over the 100's of others in your situation is the Colorsystems name, which people know.
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Old 01-20-2009, 06:47 AM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Raw reality, Markzebra. Hindus... Hindus will have the power, China already has, also Rusia. Europe goes to the trahs bin by paying in the cheapest country in the world. This is going to hell... Or shall we go to India?
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Old 01-20-2009, 06:50 AM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

However, hindus are not trusteable, if need some encourage
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:06 AM
zganie zganie is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

I think it has all to do with marketing and ease of use for your web page
plus I think the competition is pretty stiff
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:13 AM
Nutty1979 Nutty1979 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Hey thanks for the warm welcome and feedback.

Freelance does sound intriguing, i actually went for an interview at the daily Express and Daily star (UK news papers) a few months back and they was after perm staff but i offered my retouching skill when they get busy on a freelance basis as the lads get so busy they end up having to do double day shifts, they seemed really keen to use me and i was excited about the whole deal as i'd be able to keep my current job, i've not heard from them yet though :-( Was hoping it would get a foot into the freelance door.

Ah well, at the end of the day i still have my job here while searching and i've been getting some really cool work this week, currently working on a cool fashion shoot for a magazine that i cant really talk about. The other problem is the wages here, as i've been here over 7 years, i'm not earning what i should be, moving to another company could solve that but with this credit crunch, probably not the best time to be looking though. doh

As for india..... its the main cause of the rows and anger in the office! forever correcting the stuff they send back to us. We cant win...... I think our jobs here are pretty safe for the time being as the customer wants and pretty much needs to relay with one of us in the office, they cant really pop into india's offices and run over some corrections, in london they can as thats where most of our clients are based.

ah well, lunch is over for me, time to crack on.

Andy
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:17 AM
Nutty1979 Nutty1979 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Quote:
Originally Posted by zganie View Post
I think it has all to do with marketing and ease of use for your web page
plus I think the competition is pretty stiff
It does seem like the competition is very stiff, i'd better pull my finger out and sort out some kind of amazing portfolio. cr@p....where did i put them back up CD's lol
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:16 AM
SilvaFox SilvaFox is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

IMO, you are going through a mid-life crisis. A bit early. (I think more people freak out around 30 rather that 40.) But that's what it is.

Did you mention whether or not you have a family? If you do, this decision is not yours alone.

Keep the steady job, with the steady paycheck. Freelance on the side, and NOT for your company's clients. (Probably best if they don't know at all.)
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:29 AM
Nutty1979 Nutty1979 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilvaFox View Post
IMO, you are going through a mid-life crisis. A bit early. (I think more people freak out around 30 rather that 40.) But that's what it is.

Did you mention whether or not you have a family? If you do, this decision is not yours alone.

Keep the steady job, with the steady paycheck. Freelance on the side, and NOT for your company's clients. (Probably best if they don't know at all.)

Thanks for the feedback!

Nope no Family here so pretty much no ties for me if i want to bugger of somewhere. I wouldn't go as far to say its a crisis haha but i just fancy something new maybe something abit more challenging

Yeah that sounds like the best way forward! Think i just need to put something together to send out to some clients to get some freelance work.

cheers

Andy
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