i’ve been warned a lot of times by other photographers not to send or post unedited versions of my pictures online but i’m going to do a before/after post anyways. this specific tumblr of mine is personal and in no way linked to any of my professional pages/names so i figure there’s no harm.
a post like this is also a lot more for me than it is for anyone reading this — i feel sometime’s it’s good to look at your before/after’s and storyboard the process of your editing, so here goes:
1. usually the first thing i do (and my least favorite) is clear up skin/distractions/unnecessary things. since this was a beauty shoot and natural light does a fantastic job of revealing any blemishes and unevenness i spent an long time doing this. the skin in the finished picture is unusually smooth for a person (no one’s skin actually looks like that), but i wanted to make her look as ethereal and unworldly as i could. i also muted/edited out a few stray hairs and clone stamped her shirt out from the bottom left, giving her the appearance of being fully nude while still wearing a shirt. ideally, her shirt wouldn’t have showed up at all in the photo, but when it does i have to get rid of it.
2. the second thing i do (and my favorite part) is the color correcting. i’m not going to go into details about how i use photoshop to do that (because that would literally put everyone reading to sleep) but i knew i wanted this to be moody and dark, so blues and yellows were definitely what i was going for. i brightened the light coming from the left and added more contrast to make the right side darker. this naturally brought out the color in her lips and added more drama to the fur scarf. i usually end up playing around with different settings/adjustments for a while until i get what i want.
3. after this, my last step is usually tweaking small details of the photo. after all the color/contrast adjustments, her hair had lost the texture, morphing into a giant black blob on her head and i wanted to show the texture of it so i lightened it, and well as lightening the corner of her right eye and darkening the eyeliner to emphasize the makeup. i didn’t touch the strands of her hair to the right because i felt it added to the photo rather than distracting from it.
4. that’s about it for my process. sometimes after number three i’ll tweak the colors some more to see if there’s another way i would’ve like it better, or i realize there’s more skin retouching to do and i go back and do that too. a lot of times i don’t actually follow these steps in order, i just do what i want and eventually i get around to everything.
so that’s how i edit. i’m pretty quick once i realize what i want. i apologize in advance to anyone who read this thinking it was a complete waste of time haha.