Beauty photography is something that I have become drawn to over time. Setting a mood, imagining a makeup style, and finding or even creating props to fill the frame with my model’s face is something I came to love more than anything else. In any genre of photography, I feel like it is important to develop a style that is recognizable. May that be retouching, posing, lighting, or something else, if people can tell you took the picture it means you have developed a signature style. For my beauty work I wanted to create a signature lighting setup that would be easy to recreate wherever I would go, no matter the condition or the place the shoot would take place in. Here is how I created it and how you can recreate it as well to make it your own.
The other night I was asked "what is the most frustrating thing about shoot weddings?" I thought about this question for a second and shockingly my answer had nothing to do with bridezillas, wedding planners, hot and humid weather, or even post production. Easily the most frustrating thing about shooting weddings is dealing with unreliable radio triggers during the reception. Perhaps this simple yet unreleased hotshoe adapter could make this problem obsolete if only someone would create it.
Our cameras today are extremely powerful with settings and features that help us archive stellar image quality. But sometimes the images we come home with just don't capture the true essence of what was photographed and what our eyes saw. The photo is just a bit overexposed or underexposed and doesn't capture what we felt in that moment we pressed down on the shutter button. We fiddle and tweak in Photoshop with sliders and brushes, but there is another tool to add to the arsenal: masks. Specifically, luminosity masks.
In Part 3 of the Dramatic Beauty Portrait Tutorial, we will finally get into the first main step of the skin retouching process. Basic skin retouching involves addressing subtle skin and texture issues on our portrait images. We will not only look at techniques for skin retouching in Photoshop, but also discuss the theory behind our decision process during the retouching process. I will also show optional techniques for those looking for quicker or alternative options during their portrait or beauty retouching. In case you missed it, during Part 1 of the tutorial we went over the lighting and shooting of our image and in Part 2 we looked at the "pre-editing" process.
In Part 1 of our Dramatic Beauty Portrait Tutorial, we looked at the lighting setup, gear breakdown, and shooting of our dramatic beauty shoot. In Part 2 of the tutorial we will now look at two different ways of exporting and preparing your image for retouching. The first method involves creating versions in Lightroom and exporting directly to Photoshop. The other method utilizes Adobe Camera Raw and the ability to make variations within Photoshop. I will also discuss the overall goal of our pre-edit stage.
South Carolina-based Taylor Engel's short, "The Pavement" — which got him into the top 10 for HBO's Project Greenlight — had me enthralled the moment it began. Through its rhythmic delivery, simple visual nature, and dark aesthetic, it pulls us through a sinister human story that gets at our primal nature. Its simplicity is partly attributed to the needs of the story, and partly to the time frame in which it was created. Engel and his team planned and finished the film in just one month, all while working around their day jobs.
A little over a year ago, we were introduced to SmartAlbums from Pixellu. They helped photographers all over increase their productivity by allowing them to stop hating the process of designing albums. This year, they brought us a bigger and better product, and I got to use it first hand.
A few months ago I got an email from Rhino Camera Gear asking if I would like to beta test their new slider. I didn't really know anything about this product and I quickly forgot about it until it showed up at our office a few days ago. I had no idea that this would be one of the most impressive products I've tested in years.
In Part 1 of the "Start to Finish Fashion Editorial Retouching" tutorial, we looked at how to clean up a white background, how to liquefy clothing to achieve a better fit, and how to clone and heal out distracting elements in our editorial image. In Part 2 we will look at how to go about the more common and essential retouching steps including: skin retouching using dodge and burn, color toning, sharpening, and value adjustments. In this video, I take you through each step and give you insight into the "why" as well as the "how" of editorial retouching.
Do you want your sensor to shift in-body to create a higher-resolution image? Want 4.5-stop image stabilization built into the body so we can benefit from its use with any lens? Want to be able to decide for every shot exactly what level of anti-aliasing you want in order to balance moiré and sharpness? It’s all possible with the new 24-megapixel, APS-C Pentax K-3 II. And, it'll likely be possible in their rumored full-frame camera. Pentax is great, but why aren’t we seeing the “bigger” brands pony up with groundbreaking features?
Everyone wants to succeed in whichever photography genre they are passionate about, that's a given. While the automotive photography world is one of very high standards, and not easy to break into, how often do you stop to think about the fundamental things you should be doing to achieve said success? Ravi Angard of ShiftHype takes you through some key points with the help of some professional automotive shooters' insight.
Post-Production and Retouching is just as much an integral part of creating a great image or series of images as pre-production and the actual shoot, especially when you are shooting for a client and not just for yourself. Each genre of imagery, advertising, beauty, fashion, etc. has a slightly different set of rules and parameters when it comes to retouching. In this tutorial we will look at the complete start to finish of a fashion editorial image. Last week I posted the complete gear list for this exact shoot. This week we will look at the first part of retouching, including cleaning up our white seamless and correcting distractions in our image.
Dana Pennington is a Los Angeles-based Fashion photographer. He recently moved to become a permanent resident in Los Angeles, from his home town Denver, Colorado. I had the chance to sit down with Pennington during my first trip to L.A., over the past weekend, and talk to him about his journey into the fashion photography industry.
Street photography continues to be a growing area in the industry. More and more people enjoy it and are learning how hard it is to get it right. Here are some tips from distinguished professionals Eric Kim, Yanidel, and Martin Parr on how to improve your own street photography.
Civil Engineer, Thomas Berge, is a hobbyist filmmaker from just outside of Stavanger, Norway. He has carefully edited together a ridiculously gorgeous combination of timelapses and hyperlapses of the west coast over the last three years that will have you calling your travel agent to book a flight out his way. It’s a five minute feast for your eyes that you don’t want to miss.
Getting perfect skin tones can be quite time consuming and difficult. Because everyone's skin complexion is different, the corrections needed will be different every time. Even so, there are some recurring problems such as over-saturated reds in darker tones. A great makeup goes a long way in helping with redness, but sometimes it is not enough. The best example is the red seen in the ears when the model is backlit. Because of the nature of skin and the human body, the ears are going to turn red and no makeup will totally solve that. So let’s see how we can correct that very effectively and quickly using Photoshop.
This is a post for all the dude photographers out there. I really don't want to be writing this, because I don't think it should have to be said, but apparently it does. This post is simply a call and reminder to treat your models with the respect that they deserve. I want to talk about respecting your subject's boundaries in general, but I also want to address the psychological part within men's minds that makes them want to see women naked.
As I spend more and more time around other photographers, I’ve had the opportunity to sit back and listen to everyone’s take on what makes a retouched image successful. Some photographers spend minutes retouching, while others spend literally hours on an individual image. Regardless if you spend 15 minutes or 3 hours retouching in image, it’s important to have a strong workflow so that you maintain your sanity.
If you've been working to improve your photography then you should already be familiar with the Golden ratio and the rule of thirds as they relate to visual compositions. Avoiding all the math we can simply say, to create a more intriguing shot we divide our composition into nine equal parts (two equally spaced horizontal lines and two equally spaced vertical lines) and then we place important elements along these lines or their intersect points. This and other compositional guidelines (or tips) are nicely illustrated by this Cooperative of Photography video, using the works of Steve McCurry.
It's always a treat to find a Photoshop feature that you didn't know existed. I was recently introduced to the "render flame" filter in Photoshop CC 2014. Using fire in images or composites isn't anything new, but creating fire elements from scratch is. With this awesome feature, anyone can now create custom flames to be used alone or in coordination with other real fire elements and photographs.
Recently announced at the head of WPPI a couple weeks ago, was the Profoto B2 strobe system. The unit, small in comparison of its competitors, was arguably the most exciting product announcement this year at the popular photography convention. However, the burning question everyone has been asking is… is 250Ws enough for on location work like Profoto suggests?
Knowing when to stop is the hardest lesson to learn for those new to retouching. In this tutorial we will look at how to recover lost texture and over smoothed skin tones, even when your file has been flattened. In this image the texture has been over retouched resulting in a significant loss in the skin texture. The transitions between skin tones have also been slightly overdone. Frequency Separation is a term we see in retouching all the time its also a technique I'm working on using less and less and bring in as a last resort. By using frequency separation here we can borrow texture and...
So I get this question all the time, and decided today I would answer it. You see, I tend to add the client name, or the subject's name, my own logo or watermark, and even the occasional censor bar, to my images in as creative of a manner as I can. This is just a little thing I enjoy doing, and never gave it another thought when I started it. However, since then I've been asked several dozen times how I go about doing it, so today I made up a quick tutorial covering exactly how I do it.
Remember watching the trailer for "Fast and Furious 7" and chuckling to yourself about how unrealistic, improbable, and over-the-top it was to be air-dropping sports cars from a cargo aircraft thousands of feet above the ground? Me too. Just 24 hours after the release of the trailer, the filmmakers put out this featurette to prove us wrong.