RetouchPRO

Go Back   RetouchPRO > Technique > Photo Retouching
Register Blogs FAQ Site Nav Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Photo Retouching "Improving" photos, post-production, correction, etc.

Help with high school senior picture

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 12-09-2007, 01:13 PM
thekevster08 thekevster08 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5
Help with high school senior picture

Hello, I'm taking my own senior pictures, and in my search for photoshop advice, i came across this site. I must say, I've been looking for information for about 3 months now and this site is fantastic, I just had to join.

Anyway, after reading through all the basic and retouching tutorials and the first 10 pages of threads in this forum, I decided to give it a try. I've been messing around with them for a couple of days, and I just can't seem to get it. I think that the problem is that i don't really know what i want.

Most of my friends have gone to this guy:


I really like his work. I can tell that he edits them, but they don't seem to be overly edited. They look real. I would like for mine to also.

Anyways, here is a sample picture, if anyone could just tell me what they would do to it, that would be a great help. Sorry I'm so vague, I'm just relatively new and don't know where to start with this.



Thanks
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 12-09-2007, 02:27 PM
BillFrey BillFrey is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 209
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Hi thekevster08,

This probably isn't the answer you're looking for, but a good portrait starts with the basics of posing. The posted photo has many things wrong with it, including a tree sticking out of your head.

I suggest reading about posing and then taking the photo over.

http://www.lumitouch.com/benstudiotutorial/rules.html
http://lumitouch.com/benstudiotutorial/index.html
http://jzportraits.home.att.net/
http://www.aesphotography.com/shootprep.htm
http://www.photographybyhartman.com/what_to_wear.asp
http://www.stonephotography.com/gallery_clothing.html

Hope it helps.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-09-2007, 05:39 PM
grannysdc's Avatar
grannysdc grannysdc is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Kansas USA
Posts: 279
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Nice Snap Shot..
Removed the tree form the head by changing background
I added another light, high and to the left using Filter>Render>lighting effect..
healed the face some, levels, curves, sharpened

It would have been nice to see your hands and also would probably be better if your Knee was not almost as big as your head

Follow BillFrey's advise above and Practice, practice, practice.... U can DO IT!!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Grad.jpg (99.4 KB, 168 views)
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-09-2007, 08:41 PM
thekevster08 thekevster08 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5
Re: Help with high school senior picture

yeah, your right, not quite what i was looking for haha. Still, it is helpful. There is just so much to learn. Its nice having people sort of guiding me along. Hopefully, when i retake them in the spring, they will be much better. In the meantime though, with the holidays coming up, id kind of like to have something to pass out to my family and such. So, what about this one. I know it probably has problems too, but is it any better. I took like 20 different poses, and i narrowed it down to about 5 that i like. If its better could you tell me how you would go about editing it, and if this one is bad too, can you tell me like what sort of things are wrong with it.

I really do appreciate any help, even if its not the answer im looking for, any critique will only make me better, so its all welcome.

As for the second picture, i see what you mean, that background looks a lot better. I definatly see what you mean with the knee. It looks good. Did you work on the eyes any?

Thanks!

Last edited by thekevster08; 12-09-2007 at 08:46 PM. Reason: didn't see another post
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-09-2007, 09:02 PM
Mike Mike is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Grand Junction CO USA
Posts: 653
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Try these things:

Use a lens with a longer FL.

Either turn down the flash or use a reflector, you have too much fill light and its in the wrong place.

Use a shallow DOF so the background would not be so sharp.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-09-2007, 10:03 PM
Gary Gary is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 193
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Duplicated the original, increased the overall saturation to give it some 'pop' using curves in the A and B channels of LAB and changing the blend mode to Soft Light at approx 50% opacity; copied & pasted this to the top of the RGB version; selected the sky and reflection using Color Range and with that selection active, used Selective colors (Cyan & Black) to color the sky; added clouds to the sky and water using a white cloud brush; copied and pasted his smile from the first shot to this one, masking to blend; touched up the few skin blemishes with the Healing Brush Tool; softened the BG a bit and then applied sharpening to his eyes, mouth and hair.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Saturated-with-Sky.jpg (99.0 KB, 178 views)

Last edited by Gary; 12-09-2007 at 10:06 PM. Reason: Add photo
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-10-2007, 12:08 AM
grannysdc's Avatar
grannysdc grannysdc is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Kansas USA
Posts: 279
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Gary, Nice job on bringing out the colors and fixing the sky..

thekevster08, I don't know what camera you are using so I will use my point and shoot as an example... for normal use it stays on its wide angle setting which is equivalent to about 35MM... A good portrait lens is usually around 90 to 105MM.. If you have the capability, use your telephoto to increase your Focal Length, which will also decrease your depth of field as Mike said..

Have whoever is taking the pictures look at the whole viewing screen instead of just the face in the middle and try not to amputate any body parts.. like hands or feet (try to make them part of the composition) If you must cut off an arm or leg.. then look toward a head and shoulder shot..

If you do chop off arms and legs you can always crop later, as I did here .. Also, keep all those other shots for replacement of bad smiles and eyes later.. That way you can salvage an otherwise bad shot because of a blink, or whatever.. as Mike did above with the smile..

The second photo you provided seems very awkward to me.. It seems like there are two separate pictures just laying side by side.. One of ducks and one of you.. To me it looks like there is a line just behind your back that seems to separate the photo in half.. Which is one reason I cropped it as I did

What program are you using to fix these photos... This is an area for learning to do it yourself... not to have the work done for you.. (which BTW is why I left some things unfinished.. Tis just a sample of what can be done by you)..

I am looking forward to you showing us some samples of your efforts so we can give you further guidance if needed and/or critiques..

Click for Info on how to size and attach images to your posts
Attached Images
File Type: jpg ducks.jpg (47.4 KB, 133 views)
File Type: jpg Grad2.jpg (99.9 KB, 110 views)
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-10-2007, 02:22 AM
Alison's Avatar
Alison Alison is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Sanctuary Point, N.S.W Australia
Posts: 314
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Granny,

That's what I was thinking - Ducks! :-)
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-10-2007, 02:50 AM
Alison's Avatar
Alison Alison is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Sanctuary Point, N.S.W Australia
Posts: 314
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Hi thekevster08,

There is always something you can do to an image to make it better, but if you set off with a really good image ....well

Image with and without frame.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSC02170-copy1.jpg (70.2 KB, 86 views)
File Type: jpg DSC02170-copy.jpg (72.1 KB, 95 views)
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-10-2007, 05:24 PM
thekevster08 thekevster08 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Okay, I gave it a try. I realize that the sky, sky reflection needs a lot of work. Honestly I didnt even touch the water. I was just trying to see if I could do the color correction right.

I'm using photoshop CS 2 by the way.

I just boosted the saturation a bit for the picture, then I used this tutorial for skin things, then i lightened the eyes a bit. I also used liquify for the smile. I was not very confident in trying to totally replace the mouth, so i just adjusted that one.

Yeah, sorry about the ducks. Mom thought it would be cute. But yeah, I see what you mean with the whole cropping thing. It does help.

I totally understand where you are coming from with the "dont do it all for you thing" thats not what I wanted at all. I want to learn how to do it, I just was so overwhelmed looking at eveyone else's pictures on this site. I had no idea where to start.

Anyway, here is the picture (attached). Let me know what you think.

Thanks
Attached Images
File Type: jpg online-2.jpg (96.4 KB, 110 views)
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 12-10-2007, 10:37 PM
grannysdc's Avatar
grannysdc grannysdc is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Kansas USA
Posts: 279
Re: Help with high school senior picture

For giving it a try,.. I think you have done a great job!

Even the sky looks good..

The Degrunge technique is a convenient and a good way to smooth skin.. just make sure you get the radius and computations right and follow the instructions and don't over-smooth..

You might try a small soft healing brush and/or use a soft clone tool at a low opacity to build up repairs slowly.. Generally a soft, small healing brush just a bit bigger than the pimple or freckle you are trying to get rid of and sampled in a good area in close proximity to the repair will suffice.. If you leave a round spot or dis-colorization that you don't want, then go back in history or undo and try the clone as outlined above.. OR do like the rest of us and do whatever you are comfortable with that you can do well while still practicing the other, newer techniques until you are comfortable with them..

Work on getting your retouching looking smoother and and try not leave behind traces that you did any retouching... as the added wrinkles where the liquify tool was used.. and whatever you did to the hair on the forehead, don't do that, it looks painted.. it looks like you added little spot on the neck.. the face is a little blotchy and needs a general clean up and blending, like on the dis-colorization on the cheek under the eye..


All in all I think you have a great start here, it just needs some final touches and on its way to being a well executed retouch..

Remember, when you say you are taking your own Grad pictures that someone else is behind the lens and may not see things the same way you do.. so have them take lots of photos beforehand to get a sense of their style.. Also, any of these "Practice" shots are candidates for your Grad photo(s).. It is a lot better to have everything correct in the camera and not do much retouching.. where all you might have to do is get rid of a zit and be done with it..

Keep up the good work and Practice, practice, practice..

You have jumped in and got your feet wet now so we are looking forward to many more submissions from you..

This is just my way of saying WELCOME to RetouchPro and letting you know we are glad you are here..

Keep looking around at the tutorials and all the other places here..
Most areas here will be helpful in some way or another to you (well they have been to me anyway) and feel free to ask for any help you need
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-11-2007, 12:01 AM
AdamZx3's Avatar
AdamZx3 AdamZx3 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 194
Re: Help with high school senior picture

I would concentrate on getting your color right first, the beginning image is really flat. I hope the colors ok in my pic, I haven't calibrated my monitor yet (just got a new workstation) so OSX is using a canned profile. Anyway...

I just started out in levels and bumped up the shadow slider until it met the edge of the mound on the histogram, this started to help the photo, then I finished in curves tweaking bit here and there. Adjusting the midtones with a slight S curve gave the image more saturation and color without using the saturate command (I almost never use it to boost sat.)

There was also a color cast so I used the white stripe in the shirt as a reference to make the average samples 232,232,232 (RGB Values) again using curves but in the individual channels. Getting the curves down will take a lot of practice. Next I cloned out all the geese, I found them extremely distracting. Next I brightened the eyes and removed the redness from the eye whites.

As far as skin I just cloned a couple of blemishes out and thats it, I wouldn't blur it as some have, I personally think it looks horrible on guys (well blurring skin in general is horrible but especially on guys!) Next I added some sharpening as the whole photo was a bit soft. I used approx: Amount 70-80%, radius 1.0 and threshold about 7-8 or even 9. Using a higher threshold will leave low contrast areas such as the skin un-sharpened but will hit the stripes the hardest, the part of the lips just slightly and the eyes, as well as most of the background. A more relaxed pose and cracking a smile might add to the photo as well!

On your last attempt it is looking better, color seems to be closer but the image is very flat, try starting with the original and try bumping the shadow slider (left one) to the right to make the darks darker, and try and play with the curves some. Also when you made yourself smile the ends of the lips became pointy, I would take the point off just a bit as it looks a bit feminine. Keep it up!

Hope this helps
Attached Images
File Type: jpg kid.jpg (99.8 KB, 96 views)

Last edited by AdamZx3; 12-11-2007 at 12:09 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-12-2007, 11:24 AM
Enkay's Avatar
Enkay Enkay is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 61
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Hey, this is my first post on this forum and I figured i'd give this a try...

I didn't have much time so there's still a few things I would change... The water on the right on the right is obviously blown out and needs to be fixed (too lazy to go through my layers to see which one is causing it!)... Still a few overtones I'd like to get rid of but once again this is just to give you an idea.

I would also remove the "wrinkles" in your shirt to make it seem like it's a tighter fit rather than floating over your shoulders like it is now.

The idea when you're a guy is to go for "tall dark and handsome" as they say. For that you need to add contrast and accentuate "manly" features.

At your age you can remove blemishes but I don't think you need to actually smooth out your skin. It looks efeminate and that's not a good thing in this case haha.

If you have questions about what I did let me know. Comments would be nice too.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSC02170_rt100.jpg (97.3 KB, 92 views)
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-12-2007, 06:59 PM
Sistere Sistere is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 49
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Hi Kevster,

First off...congrats on graduation! Thats fantastic.

The question that is in my head, does not lead directly to an answer to your question; but I must ask.

Why are you taking your own SPs?

I know pro SPs can be expensive, and can be a source of frustration for those who want a pro look...but pale at the pro price. I do a lot of work with the graduation age bracket, so I completely understand the problems, desires and hopes for those wanting great SPs.

Now, if you are wanting to learn photography and retouching because you have a natural desire for the craft...great! You are on the right track by being here and asking the questions you are asking.

But, if you are trying to learn the craft in order to save some cash on SPs...although I understand 100%...let me suggest from experience that you will probably regret the decision.

I know soooooooo many people who thought they could get by with taking their own SPs and not one has been happy with the results; at all. The primary reason is that you cannot possible learn enough in the alloted time frame. Pros 'are' pros because of the amount of time they have invested in mastering their craft and unless you are a modern day Mozart of the lens...in other words a prodigy - you just will not be able to achieve the same high level results as someone with years and years of experience under their lens cap.

I'm sure this is a question you have turned over in your head hundreds of times; to do-it-yourself or go to a pro. In your post you mentioned and linked to a pro photographer, so based on that I am assuming you want a certain look and not just a snapshot. And, I DO know how important SPs are. They are highly symbolic of a very special time in your life and cannot simply be 'retaken' years later if you were to regret your first choice of photographer.

I don't know...maybe I have no idea what the fo' I am saying and am merely spewing mindless mental verbiage...

If I may, here is an example of what I am trying to communicate.

I am attaching two photos of the same girl; one she took for a do-it-yourself situation to save some cash and one we took as a favor for her. If you can't tell which is which...please don't respond with such - my ego would weep more tears than I have tissue.

My point is that she worked out something with us whereby she didn't have to pay a lot for her SPs. A little creativity goes a long way and she was a 1000% happier with the photos we took and now has something she can be proud of years later.

Just some thoughts for ya.
Damien
http://www.digitalsistere.com
Attached Images
File Type: jpg sidebyside.jpg (91.9 KB, 106 views)
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 12-12-2007, 10:01 PM
thekevster08 thekevster08 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5
Re: Help with high school senior picture

Well, I really don't know why I'm taking my own pics honestly. Origionally, all of my friends were going to take ours together one day. I guess we just thought that if they can do it with a camera photoshop and a printer, we can too. I've been messing around with photoshop for a couple of years now, just not much with photography things. Origionally I wasn't even going to get senior pics. They are really expensive, and i have tons of pics of my friends that i just take throughout the year to remember them by, i just didn't really think that it was worth the money to get them (no job = no cash ) but yeah, then I got the idea to just take my own and they wouldn't be as good as if i had them professionally done, but it is better than nothing. Plus I thought that i could do a decent enough job that it would be good enough to compare with professional ones. Plus i do have an interest in photography. I think im getting a new camera for christmas as my old one is very outdated (1.8 megapixels almost 6 years old) These were taken on a 5 MP camera.

I totally see what you mean that professional ones are much better, and by taking my own it has only made me respect professional's all the more. I just think that for me it was not worth it.

Yes I can tell between your two pictures, but i would hope that people would think that mine were better than the ones that she did. If not, let me know, because i am wasting mine and eveyone elses time. That almost looks like a myspace pic

Anyways, here is another pic. I took off the face mask thing and increased dark curve area. I've never messed with curves before, so i dont think that it is done very well, but that is my best of about 4 attempts. I also took out the ducks except for the 2. I couldnt get them to clone out. Oh well, i can researh clone tool on my own, so dont worry about that.

Also, when it comes time to print these.....What do you recomend? I have an inkjet, but would you use that, or would you just go to like a kinkos or something? What type of paper do you use? Its really hard to find professional photo paper.

Thanks for all the feedback. I wasn't expecting this much help, but it sure does make a difference!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg online-2.jpg (99.7 KB, 87 views)
Reply With Quote
Reply

  RetouchPRO > Technique > Photo Retouching


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
HDR - ( High Dynamic Range ) Images CJ Swartz HDR/HDRi and Tone Mapping 6 11-12-2007 04:40 PM
High ISO modes -- digital compacts and Dslrs CJ Swartz Photography 1 05-22-2007 11:41 AM
Reconsidering 16 bit Ed_L Input/Output/Workflow 14 11-01-2005 10:41 AM
High School Reunion Collage bartist Critiques 4 09-16-2005 06:31 PM
Sharpening with highpass filter winwintoo Photo Restoration 11 06-24-2003 03:19 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:47 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright 2014 Doug Nelson. All Rights Reserved