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Retouching Examples
Old 09-12-2005, 04:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Stumbled across a nice site which has before and after examples of retouched images. Move your mouse over the images to flip.

Glen C. Feron - Art of retouching
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Re: Retouching Examples
Old 09-12-2005, 06:09 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Cool site.... I don't feel so bad about some of my work pre edit now.....

Ron
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Re: Retouching Examples
Old 09-12-2005, 07:08 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Here's my problem with THAT degree of retouching. If you look at many of the images, he is not so much "re-touching" but he is "re-creating" an image. PS is obviously a valuable tool at our disposal. To use it for retouching, blemish removal, slight adjustments here and there is one thing; however, when you are adding BUTT and FEET to the image, I think you are moving away from being a photographer and more of a digital artist...

Now, having said that, this guy may or may not have taken these images and very well could be advertising his skills as a re-touch artist...and he is quite good. What is scary is...how many so so photographers can turn a pretty bad image out of the camera into a pretty good image with PS.

I suck so bad with PS, I have no choice but to capture as good an image I can out of the camera cuz if I was relying on my PS skills to enhance my images, I would never post anyting...ON the flip side...I wish my PS skills were stronger so that some of my "near miss" images could be improved if I didn't catch a blunder in the viewfinder...but for now, all I can do is make a mental note of my blunder, learn from it and purpose myself not to let it happen again...

Cool link though....
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Re: Retouching Examples
Old 09-12-2005, 07:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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All I know is I do not have to diet anymore.

Lol.

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The Future Is Near
Old 09-12-2005, 11:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Photography and Digital Art are definitely merging, and while there will always be holdouts to any technological advances, we've already seen how quickly digital SLRs have transformed our photography businesses. Our clients and future clients don't care whether you "did it all in the camera" or whether you used Photoshop, they want the final product to look great. As a photography AND digital artist I view Photoshop as just another tool to achieving a specific look and image quality -- just as I would add another light, a color gel, a black nylon over the lens, or any other technique; I shoot everything knowing that I will manipulate it in Photoshop. Sometimes I retouch the image (to repair a blemish, a hole in my seamless, a stray hair) and sometimes I recreate the image - slim a waist, removing a tattoo, inserting a new background, etc.

If you're a skilled enough photographer to shoot an incredible image and "do it all in the camera" --- hey, good for you. If your final image looks incredible -- and was retouched, recreated and manipulated, either by you or another digital artist - who cares, you're awesome. But here's a warning to all the photographers out there who can't "do it all in the camera" AND are not good with Photoshop -- don't quit your day job.


This shot of Marianna was taken in my livingroom and many of the elements were changed in Photoshop.

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Re: Retouching Examples
Old 09-12-2005, 12:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I think a lot of them are overdone. I mean, if you need to touch up a bit of cellulite, a slight paunch, a few wrinkles that are too deep or numbered and/or modify saturation, hues and overall toning, that's fine. However, this is too much, and it turns out that the result looks more like a painting than an actual photo. I realize this may be what some people want but it's plastic IMHO.

My problem with them is mostly the faces. About 90% of them, I like the way the body turned out, but the effect is so drastic that the face looks fake. If he backed off the effects on the face (except for the toning) in those, they would probably look somewhat more human and real.

A good retouch artist can make a boring, lifeless photo into an image that people will look at and you can't tell that it's been retouched. This isn't so in the case of these.

Don't get me wrong, they're beautiful works of art. They just aren't photographs.
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If you look. . .
Old 09-12-2005, 12:42 PM   #7 (permalink)
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at the rest of his site you soon see that this type of work is in demand by someone. His tear sheets show it and and his prices uphold it. You will also notice that he does not take the image nor does he provide anything more that a digital output.
As for your skills (and anybody's for that matter) remember how you get to Carniege Hall. . . practice, practice, practice.



This image was taken in studio and never intended for something like this. Like so many of the things I do it just seemed to be the type of image that cried out for something more. Mom was delighted.
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Is it Photography or Art?
Old 09-12-2005, 01:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The age old question. I personally believe in shooting the best shot I can in the camera according to the vision I had of the scene. But in the real world that vision sometimes (often) does not meet the expectations or vision of the customer for the work. It is, afterall, their vision and expectation that really counts since they are paying the bills. So having the ability to alter the image to meet their needs is paramount.

Bottom line: we all need to learn as many Photoshop skills as we can or have someone we know who can provide them.



Cheers,
rfs
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Re: If you look. . .
Old 09-12-2005, 01:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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And this is a fine image...But did you enhance the child in any way?? My point was that in the 2nd image I looked at, a very pretty young lady's behind was manipulated to a totally different butt. I wish my PS skills were...well...skills. I need some serious training as I see the value of PS and how it can enhance photos...such as yours. To Marty's point, I agree that in todays commercial world you MUST be a good photographer AND damn good with PS or "don't quit the day job"...

My question is...and thats all it is a question...when does PS retouching out weigh the photography. In the image you and Marty provided as an example, you ENHANCED what seems to be nice photos by manipulating the background and made a nice but plain image better. I WISH I could do that and maybe someday I will; however, in the photos on the link, the photo itself was manipulated (quite well in many cases)but is adding a larger butt or bigger boobs really what we should be doing and then passing it off as a "photograph". Now, I might have answered my own question because in the case of the guy in the link above, if he was contracted to do just that then he did what he was paid to do. I am commenting more on guys like myself that will probably never be commercially paid professionals.

Please don't misundertand, I applaud the guys work and if there is a market for it (which apparantly there is)good for him.

At the HTL in Georgia earlier this year, Larry Marchant was the key note speaker...and a fine photographer in his own right. During his presentation, he showed some examples of his work. One image in particular stuck with me. It was for a hotel in Arizona. It was a panoramic with a rider on horseback at sunset with mountains in the background...cactus everywhere...extremely detailed and beautiful. When he was detailing the shot we found out, the mountains were in a different state...the sunset was in Utah...the horse and rider from another state and the cactus in the scene were from another photo altogether. The image was incredible, but can you really call THAT image a photograph. To me it would be called "digtal art". He later showed a photo he took of larry Kings wife sitting under a tree on grass. Someone asked if the grass in the image was from the same state.

Once again, I am not questioning integrity or photographic skills per se, but by that example, I simply wonder if an average or below average photographer can be perceived as a great photographer because they are extremely PS skilled.
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I understand. . .
Old 09-12-2005, 03:58 PM   #10 (permalink)
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where you are coming from. But I think this is the same conundrum folks have had since photography first come on the scene. Isn't kind of like asking the question can I take an Ansel Adams and the answer is sure if you had like camera, knew where he stood and what time of day and year and understood all that he did before and after the original was taken. People will say but he didn't manipulate the image. Sure he did and he did it to the extent of technical abilities of the day.
To my view when a photographer understands the techical and sees how to combine it with the artistic (and after all isn't that the real purpose of this forum) then he becomes something more than a picture taker.
Nobody questions the smarts of trying to get it right in the camera especially at $125 per hr. to fix it after. But sometimes it's just plain fun to mess with it after the fact.

[ QUOTE ]
I simply wonder if an average or below average photographer can be perceived as a great photographer because they are extremely PS skilled.


[/ QUOTE ]

That is easy to answer. No! No, because the very things that hold them back in photography will hold them back in PS. Namely the Eye for it. I believe the same talent is required for both. PS can fix complexions and in some cases body shapes, but it can't fix bad lighting, or poor composition, or incompetent posing.
[ QUOTE ]
but is adding a larger butt or bigger boobs really what we should be doing and then passing it off as a "photograph".

[/ QUOTE ]
I produce "images". In my former life I did a lot of things from body shaping to headswapping and few people cared what it was called, least of all the client. If, somehow, your sense of ethics balks. . .
be like the old farmer that decided that wine, women, and song was getting him down. So. . .
he quit harmonizing.

"Brothers", E-Pastel of grandkids from my original image
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