Friday, February 21, 2014

Retouching Models Should be Done Within Ethical Boundaries

Travelers going to work along the highway invariably see images of beautiful models in advertisements and start discussing about them. This gives rise to a debate as to whether photo retouching is a healthy practice for the common man to follow. When resorting to photo retouching, it should be done within the limits of social responsibilities.  

It is a commonplace occurrence for people to view sprawling advertisements lining the highway, while they go to work. A model displayed with her ivory skin and clear face, in the advertisement becomes the talking point for young and old alike. In hindsight, one can think that these are not original photos but manipulated versions touched and retouched using sophisticated software. It is said, “It is all in the looks” and therefore advertisements are touched and retouched to look beautiful and life like. Thus, a white skin turns rosy while a slim body turns size zero in our quest for that perfect look.

Retouching models is commonplace in the field of photography. All super models and popular showgirls are being touched up for professional reasons. Since this software comes free of cost, we use it to create a near perfect smile or an attractive pout. However, a point of debate doing the rounds of modeling circles is whether sophisticated software should be used to make a model look more attractive and eye-catching. Superficially, the answer to this question comes in the affirmative, but on deep thought, one concludes that its rampant use for manipulating models can encourage complexes in the young minds of today. 

Retouching models to lighten their skin tones, models give out the message that it is not fashionable to look dark. A conservative society is already holding a lot of prejudices and such things make matters worse. Looking at manipulated models of size zero models, young girls also want to ape them, caring little for their own health and well being. Some even go on unhealthy crash diets to obtain this size zero figures. Therefore, models have to weigh the disadvantages before they resort to enhancement of their models using photo retouching. Although, fashion dictates many things, models should be aware of the detrimental effects of their actions.

The retouching should only be resorted to if a model has to get a portfolio made or if there is some kind of competition. Models should refrain from conveying wrong notions to the outside world, by their constant use of photo retouching. Models should use this technique only after ensuring that they are not promoting unhealthy practices for the world to follow. Looking at their actions, normal citizens also start thinking that the skin and body should be flawless and therefore they go to unimaginable extents in aping the models in getting their skin and body clean.

Thus retouching should be resorted to only if there is a make or break situation in front of the model. Moreover, models should get their images retouched for good rather than for enhancing their beauty by artificial means. If they do it for hiding burn marks or covering pimples, then it is considered acceptable, but if they do it to cover their dark skin, then they are propagating the idea that being dark is not fashionable, to the world, which is a strict no-no. Therefore, retouching should only be done to within the extent of maintaining social responsibilities.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Awareness of Advance Skin Retouch Techniques for Digital Darkroom Editors

Rich textured skin always scores high on the digital platform.  Every editor should be concerned with developing advanced skills for it.

Skin retouch is a common requirement for digital darkroom editors of all levels.  Making the skin look flawless while keeping the original texture is a skill learn with years of experience. It can be done with extensive pixel-based retouching available with imaging software.  With varied brushing techniques and a bit of color, tweaking the photos, editing can be spiced up to make the visuals look presentable to the viewer. It is not the mere cosmetic modification that lures the viewer but also the overall quality of the snap.

Photoshop offers many features for advanced skin retouch. It is also possible to give the photo a healing touch, add a matt finish or gloss and airbrush the skin. Even the delicate area around the eyes can be brightened with contrast. Clients who work for high-end fashion magazines, billboards, fashion house and printed media value such advanced skills of editors.  It is of a very high caliber and done by experienced editors only.  The fashion industry sells grand dreams and requires perfect images each and every time.  Flawless skin advertisements bring in more consumers and this has been achieved with the latest imaging equipment. Every single skin retouch is done in a complete manner.  A high-end camera like a Phase One P45 or P65 can produce a perfect shot.  Then the editor does a series of steps to create a striking portrait, to improve skin tones, modify shadow and light patterns to increase the effect and enrich the eyes and skin.

One of the keys to have a clear image with a skin retouch is with the magic wand tool. With the clear color background, the magic wand can design miracles. The editor zooms on the edit 200% and using a small soft brush like 21px/0 hardness he can get rid of the small imperfections.  Using smart filters to soften the skin gives the professional editor the ability to create the magic in the photo while maintaining its flexibility.

For altering and smoothing the skin color, one easy method is selecting a color as per the color channel to get the required shade.  Another method is to create an empty layer fill with a tan skin color set, then mask and reduce its opacity to suit the image. These techniques will give a smooth and even skin color while retaining its originality and natural shading. With the help of layers it is done. Try also some frequency separation with the help of two duplicate layers in the background. It can improve the color and texture of the overall edit.

This can be applied to highlight even the lips, the nose, the chin, the cheek, forehead and eyes.  Apply a blur with the magic wand tool in order to get the desired effect.  Leave the blending mode on normal and reduce the opacity of the layer according to the desired effect. Always learn to satisfy yourself with the image first before pleasing the client. Skin retouch maybe a deceptive art but convinces viewers if done rationally.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

You Retouch Pictures, Which have been Shot Underwater?

Underwater photography is an exciting hobby for some. And for some diving down and taking pictures is a professional job. And how does one retouch underwater shots?
Obviously if a professional photographer dives down into ocean bed to shoot he would have invested in the most elaborate and high-end camera. Shooting photographs underwater is no mean feat. And moreover it is a specialized and well-established work for some photographers. When they work on land they can still take a chance and ‘catch the mood and lighting’ of a landscape. But when they dive down to the ocean bed, the same feeling is tricky. They are naturally dependent on the skills of the photo editor to bail them out if they have made some mistakes while shooting under water. And the good news is that there is software that can help in improvising the underwater shots.
What are the problems that can occur while shooting underwater? Taking close up of the ocean life in motion like fishes can be tricky. And most of the snaps that come out have a strong tinge of blue or grey shades. But the ocean itself has beautiful and natural colors. But while diving it is difficult to take pictures. Now Photoshop has a filter that has the ability to restore the same shades in the snaps. This is a boon as photo editors can now match the same natural shades. This filter is used as a retoucher. To retouch pictures which have been shot in a marine environment this is an excellent technique. Duplicate layers are made to make the color scheme. Many such images can be cleaned up with the retouch method.
The marine environment also poses challenges of light surges or air going off and diver having to swim up! A photographer can use a grey card to offset the dull colors that may appear. But retouching in Photoshop is a better method.  Now even underwater fashion photography is popular. This has helped editors to brush up their skills in yet another retouching job. The retouch method is used as an artistic skill to make the picture look fluid. It can have a fantastic visual frame when it is done.
Retouching is an incredible technique. What is valuable about it is that it manages to retain the actual essence of the picture. There is no need to ‘enhance’ it with artificial means. Dramatic transformations have also taken place with celebrities who have been models for underwater photography. Wrinkles and creases are taken care of with simple retouching with the help of brushes. The wet skin looks more natural when it is corrected. Photo editors use many tricks to retain the essence of the frame. It is here that their skills can be seen. Retouching is not just correcting the color and the skin tones. It also means improving other areas that can mar the visual content of the picture. When it comes to human portraits the skin retouching is most vital. For instance a glowing skin reflection adds to the retouch job. But such effects are used only when dramatic effect needs to be created in the design.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Fine-tuning the Spotlight for Delicate Photo Retouching with Layers

When photos come for retouching, it makes sense for the editor only to retouch some areas and not the entire frame, as that would be a manipulation. It is best to fine-tune the spotlight for delicate photo retouching. This calls for adjustments.

A client may ask for special effects to the photos. But do all the photos require special effects. An editor will prefer to address a few sections of the photo frame rather than disturb the overall setting and herein lies his skills and previous experience doing such jobs. Photo retouching can be a simple task or a complex one depending on the brief, needs of the visuals and amount of effect it needs to communicate a message. Even a new effect that is added should be able to blend in the frame rather than stand out. This is the key to adjusting or fine-tuning the spotlight for any delicate photo retouching. Some of the best methods involve creating simple layers that will be able to float on the areas that need to be adjusted. To select the areas for effects clipping path is traced around the object/s. The need for tracing is important as it will create the sharp edges and make it look uniform with the design. A contrast can be created and a shadow added to make it look natural.

An editor starts the work by working on the mid-tones of the area under edit. He will enhance the contrast. The software program being used will have all the tools to execute these details.  An advanced infrastructure and software program will allow the blending of the special created layers inside with the original objects.  The blending will occur on the entire frame in the same manner. The layers provide the transparency to ensure that the picture elements eventually blend with the retouching. The color is not lost when specific areas are fine-tuned. The software program has gradient levels that can be adjusted according to the new color tones that have been created by the addition of layers. This job can be tricky if there are varied levels of colors.

For example a sunrise picture that has been clicked at the break of dawn has vibrant colors. Adding delicate layers is a complex job as the spotlight features on maintaining the tones of the original. In such a case it is best to make a modification to the entire background rather than focusing the spotlight on the selected objects. It will be better to do a photo retouch to the entire frame in such a case. How can this be done? Simply create warm tonal quality with the color correction. Because, at dawn the colors are warm and yet to become rich and piercing like the yellowness of the sun as it rises. Here the color choice can be orange as it complements the rising sun. The gradient adjustments can be done with the eyedropper tool. If the sunrise is reflecting the water and a droplet is the key object then do not add one single layer. It will bend the light (remember the prism theory?) While gradients can be used for overall tonal modification, a single spotlight will feature in the case of delicate photo retouching with layers. It is a very versatile process designed to help editors to explore their own niche in photo editing.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Exclusive Image Retouching Services for Premium Fashion Photography

Did you ever think that good makeup; proper lighting and a perfect background were the only things that ruled the fashion photography industry. Think again because Image Retouching Services constitute all these and much more to the glamour industry.

As the fashion industry is one of the leading industries today, so is the photography sector of the fashion industry. Portfolios, albums, magazines, etc. which contain the photos of the flawless girls and boys, cannot be made today without the help of image retouching services. Makeup can make someone look fair or dark, but it cannot alter the face structure of the person. It cannot provide the perfect abs and built up body to models, unless they strive from them. It cannot lengthen someone’s legs, or make someone’s hair look more bright and shiny. All these demands can be met by image retouching services.

Photoshop continues to be the leader of the image retouching arena, but there are also many other applications, which provide image-enhancing effects. The camera from which the photo is taken also determines the quality of the pictures. The background can be changed through Photoshop.

The overall mood of the photos taken, the color contrast, the background and the brightness of the photo, all depend on the photo editor. There are certain cases where hours are spent on editing, but the picture is just not getting a satisfactory effect. Too much of editing may also spoil the photo. There have also been cases where the original picture looks better than the edited picture. Thus, the editor must have an eye for the right colors and contrasts for the right type of image and the purpose for which it is being edited. The dedication and patience of the photo editor is the decisive point of how the edited picture will turn out to be.

There are also many applications available, where photos can be edited and retouched automatically, or by following some simple steps. Also, with the social media being so prevalent, seeing their online profiles picks up many potential models. Therefore, many people choose to edit their pictures themselves, and make sure that all their pictures look perfect, so that they do not miss any chance of coming into the limelight.

There are many institutions, which provide for fashion photography courses, and image retouching is a part of their curriculum. Clipping paths, Photo masking, Image enhancement are other methods, which help in photo editing. Photos that are edited have a completely different effect than the unedited ones.
Human retouching is not the only aspect of image retouching. The subject may be anything, from a flower to a mountain, from a lifeless object to wildlife; anything and everything can be captured in a photo and retouched to give it a completely new look. While the basic rule still remains that simplicity is the ultimate beauty, and that the subtler the image, the better it is, editors can be as creative as they want and let their imagination go wild while editing.

The first impression is the last impression, and it is very intently believed in image retouching, especially in fashion photography, and editors try to put their best foot forward in making every picture look perfect.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Photo Retouching Service - Facilitates Online Commerce with Visual Impact

Perfect companions are hard to find. Sometimes a photo company can be an asset to an online vendor who needs regular retouching services. A professional approach provides the right visual impact.

A company is known by its select services. Some are exclusive and some are common but its USP. Photo retouching service is a sure USP for a company that deals in regular artwork that comes from online vendors. Often it is not only people pictures but also other items and products that need to appear pristine in their visual format. Images of products that are displayed on the websites undergo random retouching service. A photo processing company that has an in-house studio that has developed a cache of resources and tools can be relied on for this job. As digital technology takes over in selling and buying online many people would like to have a better look at the pictures before they buy any products. Hence to make the products look more authentic their images need to be retouched.

How can the images of items be enhanced with the technique of retouching?

Even when the pictures are clicked under controlled conditions a fair amount of touching is required. High end retouching involves in depth techniques and a sharper mind to handle the edit. Various media organizations and even midsized agencies need to treat their artwork. The object here is not to manipulate but to enhance the visual. Hence a suitable amount of brightness can be added to give spotlight to the product if the lighting conditions have not been favorable. There is no scientific formula but only creative tools that can help the retoucher to do the process. It can then easy facilitate online commercial activity with the necessary visual impact.

A product’s features can be highlighted with additional effects. It is the reliability of the picture that brings confidence in the buyer. Smudges can be removed. The text can be highlighted more. An effect of a mirror image can accelerate the actual retouched picture. There is a miscellaneous opportunities for retouching by adding color or adding a graphic element like a texture. The background or the foreground needs to be modified the eyedropper tool is the best bet. As a professional editor brushes his skills he finds more ways to bring a retouched photo for viable reasons. When there is a need to alter the look of model and the product (where the latter is more in focus) the source of light will be adjusted. An editor can make use of the split tone effect to add drama to the subject content. But only a truly sensible one will ensure that it will not hamper the chances of buying the product. Because some products (like medicines, electronics and foodstuff) do not need drama while some (like handbags, shoes and watches) do. Retouching the dial of a wristwatch to make it more visible is the wise thing to do. But to add a reflection to the image is a wrong move. It might offend the sensibilities of the online buyer.

All this just emphasis the need to have a professional retouching service compared to a freelance one.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Photo Retouching Service - A Savior for Bad Shots

It is not possible to click a good photograph always, and sometimes it is not enough either. You have to edit and retouch photos for one reason or the other. Photo retouching is really essential if you want them to be exceptional.

Retouching and editing a photo has become an easier job with the entire photo editing software that is available in the market. But still a professional retouching is always better than home editing. A professional photo editing session can do wonders to how the photos appear. During professional editing other elements are also tweaked to perfection. Some of the methods used for it are color correction, brightness adjustment, skin retouching. There are more procedures that bring make a difference to the overall view.  Photo retouching is one of the most asked for photo editing services.

Retouching and restoration of photos adds a lot of crispness if it is missing. So, in short photo retouching service is in a way savior for the bad shots. What’s better than a badly clicked photo that can be retouched to look beautiful? Photo editing surely needs a lot of patience and knowledge of photography.  An editor has the knowledge to handle photo saturation; brightness, hue and skin touch that make up for a good photo. Photo editing done by professionals is the best deal for any photographer. Professionals spend hours even days on a single photo to give out that best-looking photo that is perfect in every manner. It is also used to redevelop old damaged photos, which are still having some value. Old photos that may have got damaged can be easily retouched and color adjusted, using the various photo editing methods available these days. This not only saves the old memories but also adds a new shine to them. Once retouched, you can see the photos with a new angle altogether. With so much competition around it is best to avail of the offerings on a reputed firm in editing. Such firms are already working as a back end office for many ad agencies and photographers who work with magazines and newspapers. A studio is far more reliable in producing quicker results than an individual freelancer who may charge a lesser fee.

When it comes to choosing a photo studio the internet has many websites of reputed firms. Some are offshore and manage work online. They have facilities for unloading of bulk images of any resolution. Several packages can be availed for large number of pictures to be corrected. Many e-vendors prefer online studios that help in making sharper pictures for their consumers to buy the products. A little color brightening, a little contrast adjustment all these simple tricks add to the look of the picture. The editors employed totally understand how important it is to make the pictures look honest for selling on websites. What’s more they also know that even if a digital camera is used, the shots turn out bad. And they can always be made good with some of the techniques of software programs. When professional editors do the job they use high-end infrastructure. This is available only with global photo studios. The website has many examples of photo retouching which has proven to be a savior for many customers.