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  • GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

    Hi all,

    I've been looking at a lot of headshots lately to prepare for a couple of projects I've got lined up. I picked up British GQ and really liked the Robbie Williams cover. I took a similarly composed self portrait and set about to duplicate the look and feel. I'm kind of at a loss... I found a high res scan of the picture (though it registers a bit warmer than the cover itself, which has that slightly desaturated high contrast look, except for perhaps the eyes):

    http://img16.imageshack.us/img16/1328/gqrob01.jpg

    Here's a version of the headshot I'd like to retouch:

    http://img46.imagevenue.com/img.php?..._122_176lo.jpg

    I'm also wondering what to do about skin softening...I've read the posts here on male retouching and clearly I don't want to blur and blend, but what if anything should I do to get the same feel as the RW pic (and don't say shave! :-) )? Or maybe that's pretty much the way the photo came out of the camera, less any blemishes? So, I'm also including a link to a crop of the same self portrait with more skin detail. If you could take a stab at either or both of them...I'd appreciate it. The skin issue is the one that is most pressing!

    http://img251.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_127lo.jpg

    If you would like the raw file, let me know.

  • #2
    Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

    I specialize in male retouching. To correct any skin imperfections you can't live with, use a delicate D&B or some specific healing but definitely do not use any global blur or blend.

    People don't expect the same flawless perfection on male portraits than on female portraits. In fact, male portraits tend to accentuate details to add that gritty masculine feel. I don't mean actual blemishes, but people expect to see pore structure and lots of character in male portraits.

    The GQ retouching probably softened the depth of the eye wrinkles and maybe some dark under eyes, but you'll see it's only eased, not removed. You see the freckles on his forehead, his laugh lines etc. I would guess only specific blemishes were removed. You have very nice, even skin and so I would doubt there's really much to do.

    The big thing the GQ image seems to have done is shift colors. Just add a Color Balance layer and experiment. You may also add a Selective Color layer and play around with the whites, neutrals and blacks to add some drama.

    Contact me privately if you want any other advice or I could even do a retouch for you if you'd like.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

      I'm a photographer not a retoucher, so I'll let those more versed in "the way of the tablet" get into the gritty pore by pore details.

      But I did want to take a stab at getting it into the Robbie Williams ballpark, and what I show here was done solely in Camera Raw, which means no layers. The full rez AdobeRGB version in PS looks fantastic. Nice shot.

      The technique did create some artifacting that can be seen around the hair and the camera right side of the collar - that would need to be addressed, but the skin looks rather good. Sure, there are areas I'd doge and burn, but overall I think your lighting and technique sets you up for a pretty minimal job.

      You just need a good beauty retouching book. Katrin Eisman's retouching and restoration has a good chapter on skin retouching. And while I don't own it, the samples I've seen of Gry Garness' ebook looks good:

      http://www.grygarness.com/

      http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=t...age&q=&f=false

      Also look at Carrie Beene's tutorials:

      ttp://www.carrienyc.com/tutorials.html

      I'm sure your shots will work out great.
      Attached Files

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

        Hi dcmcintosh79,

        You have a good quality capture, so it's not that hard getting something similar to the RW shot. I've attached my 10 min version. I've uploaded my psd file to rapidshare (http://rapidshare.com/files/308114899/robbie.psd.html) for you to look at. no skin work (would have been fairly minor db work), just color and contrast moves.
        Attached Files

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

          Wow you guys. Thanks so much for the help.

          In the 12 hours I've stumbled upon this site I've learned so much already. Having studied retouching in various books and online training sited over the past couple of years, I do understand a technique or two. Though D&B isn't something I've done much with skin. I'm eager to try.

          Flashtones, I picked up the e-book on CS4 retouching by Garness and let me tell you....it is AMAZING. Seriously, I'm literally overwhelmed with excitement over the number of techniques I've never seen before (and like I said I've watched about 300 hours of tutorials and read several books on the subject). So get it if you can or need to.

          Here's what I've got thusfar after incorporating your ideas: http://www.flickr.com/photos/2499535...02373/sizes/l/

          Doug

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

            Very nice, Doug. I see my version is way too warm. I didn't see on first reading that the scan was even warmer than the original so I was matching the warmest areas of the cover figuring the greenish/cyan highlights was color crossover from a bad flatbed scan. Shows my age...

            I do intend to get Gry's book. Just trying to finish a couple of others first. I do more product than people. I wish there was something as thorough as Gry's stuff for product. Right now I'm working with Bert Monroy's stuff. What a trip that is.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

              gave it a try
              Attached Files

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                Some things to watch for. If you are shooting to emulate a photographic style - try to match the original fstop lense combo. It looks like they are shooting with a 50mm or 75mm at f 2.8-f4. You can tell because of the Depth of field dropoff in the hair line as it recedes. Your image is close enough on the fstop though. Second you need to look at light source. If you look at the guys eyes in the GQ cover they are using a strobed umbrella while it looks like you are using a softbox. These are fundamentally different looks that I'm honestly not sure you can emulate with one for another.

                I'll give emulating this a try if you'd like :P if it turns out well maybe I could use it in my book?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                  Originally posted by dcmcintosh79 View Post
                  Hi all,

                  I've been looking at a lot of headshots lately to prepare for a couple of projects I've got lined up. I picked up British GQ and really liked the Robbie Williams cover. I took a similarly composed self portrait and set about to duplicate the look and feel. I'm kind of at a loss... I found a high res scan of the picture (though it registers a bit warmer than the cover itself, which has that slightly desaturated high contrast look, except for perhaps the eyes):

                  http://img16.imageshack.us/img16/1328/gqrob01.jpg

                  Here's a version of the headshot I'd like to retouch:

                  http://img46.imagevenue.com/img.php?..._122_176lo.jpg

                  I'm also wondering what to do about skin softening...I've read the posts here on male retouching and clearly I don't want to blur and blend, but what if anything should I do to get the same feel as the RW pic (and don't say shave! :-) )? Or maybe that's pretty much the way the photo came out of the camera, less any blemishes? So, I'm also including a link to a crop of the same self portrait with more skin detail. If you could take a stab at either or both of them...I'd appreciate it. The skin issue is the one that is most pressing!

                  http://img251.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_127lo.jpg

                  If you would like the raw file, let me know.
                  is that a picture of u that head shot?????????

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                    Originally posted by dcmcintosh79 View Post
                    Hi all,

                    I've been looking at a lot of headshots lately to prepare for a couple of projects I've got lined up. I picked up British GQ and really liked the Robbie Williams cover. I took a similarly composed self portrait and set about to duplicate the look and feel. I'm kind of at a loss... I found a high res scan of the picture (though it registers a bit warmer than the cover itself, which has that slightly desaturated high contrast look, except for perhaps the eyes):

                    http://img16.imageshack.us/img16/1328/gqrob01.jpg

                    Here's a version of the headshot I'd like to retouch:

                    http://img46.imagevenue.com/img.php?..._122_176lo.jpg

                    I'm also wondering what to do about skin softening...I've read the posts here on male retouching and clearly I don't want to blur and blend, but what if anything should I do to get the same feel as the RW pic (and don't say shave! :-) )? Or maybe that's pretty much the way the photo came out of the camera, less any blemishes? So, I'm also including a link to a crop of the same self portrait with more skin detail. If you could take a stab at either or both of them...I'd appreciate it. The skin issue is the one that is most pressing!

                    http://img251.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_127lo.jpg

                    If you would like the raw file, let me know.
                    do u want me to have a go at retouching the pic ill do it Amazing. let me know if u want me to have a go coz im looking for more pictures for my portfolio etc but let me know an ill give it a shot?????????????

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                      Sympa, thanks for the input. Yeah, the fstop thing was a bit problematic. I shot this at F9 with my Nikkor 105mm Micro, 6-8 feet away. I wanted to shoot with a wider aperture, but it was becoming too difficult to manage focus (as this was a self portrait).

                      You guys can feel free to use this in your portfolio....if you wind up making millions of dollars on the image, just make sure to kick back a few hundred to me, ok? ;-)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                        http://i46.tinypic.com/29ffafm.jpg

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                          Originally posted by Macint0sh View Post
                          Hi dcmcintosh79,

                          You have a good quality capture, so it's not that hard getting something similar to the RW shot. I've attached my 10 min version. I've uploaded my psd file to rapidshare (http://rapidshare.com/files/308114899/robbie.psd.html) for you to look at. no skin work (would have been fairly minor db work), just color and contrast moves.
                          please, can you upload again

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                            So dcmacintosh, do you mind sharing your pp for your self portrait. checked out your flickr by the way - i like your work

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: GQ Cover Look / Male Retouching

                              My Look on this picture.
                              Attached Files

                              Comment

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