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My first High End retouch attempt

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  • My first High End retouch attempt

    Hello guys,

    I'd like to hear your thoughts about this retouch, it took me about 4 and a half hour to complete this. All your opinions, critiques (whether positive or negative), scope of improvement are welcomed. Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: My first High End retouch attempt


    Good, even skin tone and nice subtle colours. The shadow around her fingers and neck is clogged up and banding (that might be just jpeg). Good liquefying on hair outline but doggy elsewhere.

    I don't think this is high end. The pose supposed to be gentle and natural ... she doesn't look human anymore. It's all gone too far.


    • #3
      Re: My first High End retouch attempt


      I think it's very good in general. I'd like point a few thing though:
      I feel her face looks too soft, I mean, the skin looks very good, but the whole face seems a little bit flat, specially her forehead.

      I don't like how the side of her nose looks (right side when you look at the picture). The D&B looks a bit artificial I think.

      I like what you did to the lips. However I think the edge of the lower lip is too light.

      The edge of her hair and the background looks a bit hard, specially in the lower part of her head, between her neck and her ear.

      The gradient in the background looks a bit hard. Maybe a softer transition?

      Ok, I hope that helps

      Best regards!


      • #4
        Re: My first High End retouch attempt

        Hello Sinisa and Lucia, Thank you so much for your valuable feedback, it really is helpful to make this image look more beautiful and professional. Thanks again guys


        • #5
          Re: My first High End retouch attempt

          I like the background - I feel that really adds to what is already (before retouching) a good image in terms of the face. Although I do agree with LunaLuna that there might be some more development here that could make things even better.
          Another point is that that there are some aspects of the unretouched photo that already look a bit unnatural - mainly her eyebrows. eye area in general (lashes are already very long and whites of eyes very white). So your retouching goes along with the internal character of the basic image.
          The part of the retouch that looks most unnatural is the lips and the skin. The skin border around the lips looks odd. The skin is like porcelain. Finally, the skin seems to have a slight blue gray cast to it. Nonetheless, the general impression is that you are moving towards a place that will be good for this image. Maybe you just progressed a little bit beyond the ideal set point.


          • #6
            Re: My first High End retouch attempt

            I like the strong shadows around the nose and the eye treatments. You really need to pay attention to things like the shadow on the neck. It's banding, and it's easy enough to hide with noise. I would avoid deepening areas like that with something like a curve, where it adds too much contrast. The background should have more depth in terms of the way it blows out to white. The more direct light that is being kicked back from a background, the more you see the color of the light rather than the surface. Right now it just feels like you brightened it in one go without enough attention to attenuation or appropriate color shift. I like the overall color/tone, but watch for weird transitions like the chin. It's not like shadows are always going to be the same color due to the difference in lighting composition. I just find it unattractive there. Typically with this kind of shot they would ask you to clean up the stray hairs around the ear. Around the neck line I would do the hair a bit differently, so it doesn't feel like a hair job that is starting to come loose in the back under its own weight. I would also get rid of key pieces of peach fuzz, specifically the ones that either catch direct light or go in random directions as well as those that are right below the lips. It's a bad spot for them. You may also want to try not to lose so much volume in that cheek. The shading makes it feel very flat. Looking at the neck again, I don't like her hand positioning. It would have been better though if the shadows were closer to the same density and low contrast feel that you have around the nose. Right now that neck area just feels so blocked up.


            • #7
              Re: My first High End retouch attempt

              Dear RCraig and Klev,

              I appreciate your feedback very much! Such a great way to learn something, isn't it? Experts giving advise from the other side of the planet.. WOW! Feels great!

              After reading your comments I really feel that there is lot of scope for improvement in the image. Right now I'm working on the contours on forehead and the peach fuzz but it doesn't look natural, can you please suggest a better way? Thanks a lot guys for your words.


              • #8
                Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                Hi there Suryapuranik,

                My comments:

                1. The dark patchy area on the upper lip has become further accentuated after the retouch -- that needs work.

                2. The hair outline on the sides looks bitten away -- like hair has been clipped off abruptly. Remember that every hair out of place does not have to be set right -- in fact now, one smooth curve going from end to end looks unreal.

                Specifically hair below the ear -- you should have done nothing to it. It looks real and natural in the 'before' photo. With your edit it has lost its soft look.

                3. Overall, this retouch job is overdone. A lot of the facial contour has disappeared because the retouch is heavy handed.

                Less is More.

                :-), Sarah Jones
                Last edited by SarahJones; 01-30-2014, 10:46 PM. Reason: correction


                • #9
                  Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                  You're very talented. I agree with the above comments though I just skimmed them.

                  I wanted to say you work of the skin is GREAT. I can see some pores on the forehand and the cheek so I know how hard doing what you did was. It's easy to make something all plastic. It's hard to make it blemish free and still look like skin. I'd like to recommend another approach.
                  I use a combination of lots and lots of tricks. The most powerful though is the high pass softening trick. Any number of you tube video will show it. I would highly recommend you play with this tool to see what it can and can't do. I use and abuse that trick. It's wonderful at removing blemishes but leaving the pores intact!
                  Feel free to email from my profile if you want more help.


                  • #10
                    Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                    Hello Mark, thanks for your comment and I'm happy that you liked my work Are you talking about the "Inverted High pass Technique"? Can you show some of your work where you have used this? Thanks again!


                    • #11
                      Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                      I did a before and after screen shot of the technique.
                      The left side is LR work only, blemishes, exposure, WB, etc... The righ side is after PS. The main thing I do here is the inverse HP technique. It works very well on blemishes that are on areas that get the same light as surrounding areas. This gentlemen had a lot of red under his chin. Getting it out with healing would be a bit problematic because of it's size. Also he had a 5 o-clock shadow. In LR I would have had to lower the clarity or sharpness to deal with that. That's another thing HP handles well.
                      Hopefully you can see what I'm talking about after I compressed the 1MB screen shot to 90KB.
                      Attached Files


                      • #12
                        Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                        Originally posted by suryapuranik View Post
                        Hello Mark, thanks for your comment and I'm happy that you liked my work Are you talking about the "Inverted High pass Technique"? Can you show some of your work where you have used this? Thanks again!
                        I'm really happy to have found this website. In Italy we do not have a lot of good people like you. I have 16 years and I love the editing. I know if you have prepared tutorials to learn this? I want to do this when I grow up. please help me?
                        Last edited by fernandovr; 03-31-2014, 12:28 AM. Reason: help


                        • #13
                          Re: My first High End retouch attempt

                          There's a million videos out there for it. Here's one,
                          It may not be the best but it works.
                          The thing is, learn the technique and then play with it.
                          Once you have a system that works for you record it under an action with a couple pauses for input of those two numbers.

                          You can subscribe to my blog. I'll have info about classes I'll be teaching on this stuff.

                          Find me on Google+ also.
                          Note:  This blog post outlines upcoming changes to Google Currents for Workspace users. For information on the previous deprecation of Googl...


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