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The "administrative" side of retouching?

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  • The "administrative" side of retouching?

    Hey folks. New member here and seeking some input from fellow retouchers. Especially in a corportate/larger team environment(not freelance).

    Basically, if you have a usual 40hr/wk retouching job, how much of your time do you spend deciphering excel lists or other non-editing tasks, vs actual time in photoshop really cranking out assets? 10, 20, 50 percent of the time?

    Is there one thing that bothers you more than anything else being a retoucher in a corporate environment? If so, what is it?

    I think you all can guess mine and wondering if my situation is just the norm for most retouchers?

  • #2
    Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

    When I was employed about 50% of my time was spend on non retouching tasks. I also had to be IT specialist, personal assistant, client liaison, do the paperwork, tidy the office etc. etc.... and that doesn't include deciphering vague retouching instructions which can take forever to sort when people don't answer phones or reply to emails (rant rant).

    I now work for myself and have no regrets. (still sometimes get vague retouching instructions though).


    • #3
      Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

      Thanks for taking the time to respond. Yes I have found all of the above as well. Do you mind me asking how long it took for you to transition into fully supporting yourself with retouching? Or have you been forced to also learn more designing aspects in addition to retouching to keep steady work coming? I am leaning towards going this route too. If I'm going to work this hard, might as well work for myself.

      Thanks again Jerry1.


      • #4
        Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

        I think that those tasks should be looked on as breaks. What I have been doing, and that is retouching for 10 hours a day, every day, then followed by periods of just e-mailing all day is definitely not a good route.

        I'd say, keep your job if they are paying you fairly(I know I would take an ordered environment like that any day), and start freelancing over the weekend (I wish I knew what weekend is , but now you might forget as well ahaha).


        • #5
          Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

          I did it the hard way and left employment before setting up my own company. I didn't take a wage for 2 years, which made a dent in my pension.

          I'm not a particularly sales orientated person, so maybe it took me a bit longer than most to get established. In hindsight it would have been better financially to make a name for myself before quitting my job.

          Having said that my first large job came after 18 months and involved 220 hours work in a month. There's no way I could have taken that on if I was still employed.


          • #6
            Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

            By "tasks" being breaks, do you mean the administrative or the designing I referred to? If designing, I agree. I just need to push my knowledge of the software to do so.

            I agree, progressively branching out into freelance is best to be sure it would suit me. It just seems harder to find companies only looking for retouchers vs designers. But that could be a rash judgement just going by sheer comparison of postings I see on sites looking for designers vs retouchers.

            How much of your current business is on-site vs remote? I'd love remote, but guessing those are few & far between.


            • #7
              Re: The "administrative" side of retouching?

              99% of my business is remote. I need to sometimes pick up work on hard drives or meet to discuss jobs. Other than that I'm just relying on Dropbox, We Transfer and a good broadband speed. 17GB is my record for the largest job downloaded.

              Most of my clients are photographers, so I've managed to avoid doing too much design work and stick to what I'm best at, which is Photoshop and Capture One.


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