portrait processing practice

Discussion in 'Photo Challenges' started by Luke, May 14, 2013.

  1. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    A couple friends got married this weekend. They weren't super interested in hiring a photographer and the expense involved. I was standing up in the wedding or I would have offered to shoot it for them. I put out a call on flickr for some local shooters who were willing to work cheap and offered to do the processing myself to keep the price down. They ended up getting a professional photographer who has shot plenty of weddings in the past. He just does 4 a year now because he doesn't like the schedule of a working wedding photographer, but he still enjoys shooting the happy occasion. So he got $300 for the day instead of what is typically more like a $2,000 expense. What I got was a massive load of RAW files shot in a manner very different from how I work. I would NOT recommend this to anyone else. I'll put in a few solid days of processing (which is fine.....they're friends, but I don't really ENJOY processing photos....at least not a few hundred at a time).

    Anyways, to speed things along since most are well composed and exposed reasonably well, a lot of them are just getting presets with minor tweaks. It still takes time. There's a few that are particularly challenging and I'm spending more time on them. I thought I would share my misery with all who are interested. He took a bunch of flash portraits of the bride that are I guess fairly straight forward flash portrait photography. The problem is my friend Kari is a blast to be with and is a very pretty girl, but she is also quite human and the effects of a flash are not kind even on the most perfect of skin.

    I have set up a dropbox account with 5 photos that are the best of the bunch. You can pick any that you would like to work on and process them in any way you see fit. You can try one or you can try them all. You can do one "treatment" or you can try 10. It's really just a way for everyone to try something new and maybe a bit out of your comfort zone. Maybe you'll learn a new technique that you may be able to put to use one day for yourself. Feel free to just consider this practice. If you get some that you are happy with, I'd ask you to share them here and would also like your permission to use them in a book I plan on giving to them. You can do them just for fun or you can try to compete with the other entries to see who's gets chosen by me (or possibly the bride and/or the groom).

    So let's see what you can do. She's really a smiler, so she has a lot of smile lines and wrinkles around the eyes. Spend as much or as little time as you want. Keep it fairly straight and traditional or go over the top. It's all for fun and try to learn something new.

    Here's the link to the dropbox folder. https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qh9vgydkzz5vzxt/AXgWsGnSvx
     
  2. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    tried the first but windows doesn't want to play
     
  3. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    ReD, do you know what the issue is? These are RAW files....do you have a program that can deal with them?

    I'm adding JPEGS currently...they should be there in a couple minutes if you want to try again.
     
  4. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    hehe you should post this at RFF and wait for all the pros to come swooping down on the attack about the destruction of the pro-photo business by people like you :biggrin:

    by the way, "glamour photography" has a slightly different connotation in the UK (unless there are some snaps of Kari you're not letting us in on?)
     
  5. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    LOL! That's what I was thinking too!! So definitely not just an UK thing!
     
  6. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    Downloading now...
     
  7. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Sorry for my confusion about terminology. Apparently I spend my time on the internet in different ways from you two :wink: So thanks, I have corrected the post title.

    And actually, when the photographer arrived and knocked on the door, he was let in and got more than a handful (pun intended) of photos that are NSFW. Kari is the type to not care, but he deleted them regardless.
     
  8. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Pro photographer's need to step their game up if they are worried about losing out on work. These friends of mine were going to hire NO photographer. I got them to hire one for the wedding AND one for the rehearsal dinner. Great wedding photographer's will always have work. Good ones should be able to find work, too. If the advancement of camera IQ coupled with more amateurs taking jobs, it will be the poor and mediocre photographers losing the jobs. Natural selection is the law of the land. I'd love to have a job where I could show up for 7 hours and get paid $300 in cash.

    But we're getting off topic here. I understand your point and theirs, but complaining about the state of things, doesn't change them.
     
  9. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    I like 9755, very nice shot, but maybe next is practice those retouching skills :)
     
  10. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Oh don't get me wrong Luke I'm just always amused by the rants about amateurs taking pros' business.
    It's as if they think there should be a closed shop ... Smash the power looms! Smash them!
     
  11. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    wt21......these are untouched RAW files. They are supposed to be flawed. I have set these files here for those interested in trying some portrait touch-up techniques without any pressure. Play with it for awhile and see how good you can make it. It's surely not everyone's cup of tea, but it's best to practice before you get to Carnegie Hall. :biggrin:
     
  12. Gubrz

    Gubrz O.* Gonzo's & Bentley's Dad

    979
    Jun 5, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Eliot
    weeeeeeeeeeeee! files to play with!
    i can work on natural looking processing! i swear i CAN do it!

    i think i can... i think i can... i think i -OH SUPA CONTRAST FTW!!!!! hehe

    ill see what i can come up with!
     
  13. wt21

    wt21 SC Hall of Famer

    Aug 15, 2010
    "If you get some that you are happy with, I'd ask you to share them here and would also like your permission to use them in a book I plan on giving to them."

    Sorry. I COMPLETELY missed that we're supposed to do your pictures for you :tongue:

    (you know I'm kidding, right???)
     
  14. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I know you're kidding. But if anyone WANTS to do go through the other 995 photos and figure out which to delete and how to process the rest..... LOL. :laugh1:
     
  15. christilou

    christilou SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2010
    Sunny Frimley
    Bit of Nik and Perfect Effects

    I chose this one because I liked the pose and I wanted to play cropping. I've got to the stage now where I can't decide about the crop of her hair!

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Gubrz

    Gubrz O.* Gonzo's & Bentley's Dad

    979
    Jun 5, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Eliot
    i almost did that one
    actually, i did
    but then i decided her eyes looked great, but her mouth almost looked frustrated... then /i/ got frustrated at my total lack of ability to use the retouch brushes in aperture to try to degrayify the sides of her forehead. i couldnt get the color right without looking super obviously cloned over.. so i gave up and moved onto my #2 image

    i just started in silver efex
    i did 1 version, then totally started all over and did 2 more
    then i went in and did a color efex one trying to get a bit wedding bride glowy, but keep the eyes popping


    i thought this one kept her looking the most like HER
    [​IMG]

    but im me, and i HAD to do crazy contrasy stuff and make her into what would lead you to believe a much darker featured gal
    [​IMG]

    but it looked a little flat, so i went back again to try and get some depth to her face
    [​IMG]

    then the color version, as i refused to give up on having one, lol
    [​IMG]

    if you do happen to like any of these, i may have to redo them, as i noticed during the last one that i had tweaked her eyebrows in the version i was editing them all off of, and if you blow it up to crazy pixel levels, you can tell! LOL!

    --- edit ---

    christilous tilting made me go mental and have to tilt mine, too!
    then i realized, it almost looks like it was UNtilted before, the earing has some sway in it, and if you line that up straight, then the dress on the shoulders is even as well!

    [​IMG]

    ---edit---

    ok, i still wasnt happy, so i redid the last sepia but with less contrasting tones so it seemed more her natural coloring, in a few tints

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    drats!
    in honor of your signature, i was going to get a screen shot of all the nik pts all over the place, but i totally forgot!
     
  17. christilou

    christilou SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2010
    Sunny Frimley
    Driving me mad too!

    Not happy with the crop but I find the hair a bit distracting, the sepia makes her look older somehow.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. christilou

    christilou SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2010
    Sunny Frimley
    I like your last colour one best I think :)
     
  19. Gubrz

    Gubrz O.* Gonzo's & Bentley's Dad

    979
    Jun 5, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Eliot
    oh i like that first one in the most recent, CL
     
  20. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    from jpegs

    quick very basic with my expertise