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Taking Editing To Extremes

Laura McIntyre (née Ford) is off-line
02 January 2014 16:17
Purple_Girl
Photographer
Purple_Girl
Location
United Kingdom
Lothian
West Lothian and Edinburgh

I quite like the end result of the edit in the video, however I also think she looked good before the editing started. I never edit that much (mainly because I don't need to, slightly because I don't know how to) but I don't really have a major issue with other people doing it. Different projects require different levels of editing. Magazine/billboard ads always have more heavily-edited models, that's just what happens. I'm cool with it, it doesn't affect me personally. I used to think the level of editing of models in the media was terrible for the self-esteem of 'regular' or 'real' women, but these days I'm more of a mind that if your self-esteem is cripplingly low, the reason is not soley because you think the airbrushed girls in a magazine look better than you, and that alone cannot be blamed, so I'm not going to freak out about it. Also, anyone who does modelling knows that at some point (probably most of the time) the images of them will be edited, and if they're not Ok with that, then they probably won't get very far; it's been my experience though that most models expect (and want) to be edited. I greatly respect the retouchers who can work to excellent standards far beyond anything I could manage, I also agree that good retouching is as much an art as photography.

When editing, I remove any blemishes, straighten/whiten teeth if needs be, sometimes I'll tuck in an unflattering bulge or material fold, followed by adjusting the brightness/contrast a bit. I'll muck around with a filter if I think the image warrants it. I don't tend to do much else and I'm happy with the results.
A dry sponge is a happy sponge.


Paul Venn is off-lineSilver Member
03 January 2014 04:38
jpv
Photographer
jpv
Location
United Kingdom
Norfolk
Norwich

This goes back to the very beginnings of photography. Are you capturing a moment or “creating an image” as a final product, I believe there is room for both approaches.

I can remember (back in the 50’s) many happy “weekends” in the winter spent in the darkroom creating an image. toning, bleaching, making internegs, producing oil based prints and all the “bits and pieces” that were considered necessary for a “competent” photographer.

I much prefer Photoshop and a warm study!

However I do agree that it is often overdone for my taste although some of the retouching I see is awesome.

I totally agree with the comment above about “self esteem” of some of the young models I am fortunate to meet and photograph. To compare themselves with highly manipulated images to their own detriment is a folly and I do try to show them by editing their own images how unreal some of the images of their celebrity idols are.


03 January 2014 05:02
Jackass
Photographer


Had Photoshop been around in the 40's would it have been used as extensively as it is now by professional photographers? Of course it would. There's a difference between editing an image to make it look it's best and turning the model into a caricature, just like there's a difference between sensible breast enhancement and Jordan. That's not editing, anyone with even a basic introduction to Photoshop can smooth skin tone to the extent that it looks like plastic.

There should be room for all styles in this big old world, but a model who relies on purely a Photoshopped portfolio runs the risk of being a disappointment when she turns up for a shoot when the photographer doesn't recognise who he's booked! How many of us have been there?
If it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, it could be my ex wife.


OldMaster is off-line
03 January 2014 13:34
OldMaster
Photographer
OldMaster
Location
United Kingdom
Hertfordshire
Harpenden

There's no more editing now than there was or still is in virtually all fashion and beauty publications.

I suspect the point is that the majority of models on here are amateur and claim to be models because they are happy to be photographed, usually in exchange for money. Combine that with perhaps less than the very best re-touching and it could be argued that the result is perhaps less effective than if it had been left alone in the first place.

Recently the staggering numbers of images with completely plastic skin, over sharpened small Jpeg images and somewhat unusual colour balancing could all be testament to that!! There are also some absolutely superb examples of the highest quality re-touching on this site but it is not the norm?

But we are all on a learning curve, after all these years I have just learned an effective High frequency/Low frequency method which avoids the major pitfall of over smoothing original skin texture. Having said that Photoshop used with plug-ins such as Imaginomics or Perfect Portrait are still superb simple and effective tools if not over done?

So as with most things there is no definitive answer? A model with perfect skin, well lit and composed probably needs no work but even the "most perfect" model with high contrast lighting will have every blemish revealed.

Which is why it is so good to have such a battery of tools to work with all under the umbrella of Photoshop..but they are tools and like all tools, only as good as those who are using them?


03 January 2014 13:45
barone
Photographer


That's nothing....This is what it's like in the real world....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR4GoLk0o50


sorry....I can't do one of those hyer linky thingys..
Next Model Day...23rd March 2014...http://purpleport.com/portfolio/angie...Interested?...Ask me for details.


CSD Images is off-line
03 January 2014 21:57
CSD_Images
Photographer
CSD_Images
Location
United Kingdom
Grampian
Aberdeen

Is this any different from the numerous Dove commercials about 'real' beauty? Retouching is as old photography. Many of the Hollywood starlets in the 20s through to the 40s had professional artists paint up the images to make them look good, a practice that Playboy perfected with his magazine with airbrushing. That's excluding the techniques like shooting through black stockings, soft focus lenses and other tricks that was available.

What's made it so prevalent is that Ps (and other programs) made it so easy to do combined with the readily accessible cameras that produced reasonably high quality images. The retouching industry plummeted in the mid-2000s at least in the UK when a lot of my work dried up as more photographers started to bring work in house with dSLRS and other digital cameras flooding the market making mediocre retouching acceptable. Before there was usually an editorial or artistic reason for spending money on editing, these days it's more I can so I do it regardless if the model needs or wants it.

The other problem which is sort of related is that people just don't understand the human form let alone what 'looks' good given the general ***** load of shoddy images I see. Then again a lot of people struggle to understand that high end retouching starts with the make up artist and lighting first...

Sadly this is just another symptom of societies pathological vision of perfection and the need for instant fixes.

Edit: Another reason retouching is so common is that it's a marketing technique to 'differentiate' them from other photographers. At least if they don't botch it first. 
www.flickr.com/photos/csd_images | www.celticshadows.co.uk


Skymouse is off-lineGold Member
03 January 2014 22:42
skymouse
Photographer
skymouse
Location
United Kingdom
London
London

Quote from SuzyMonty
Found this little video interesting. How much editing do YOU do?







For my "real world" photos, which are for paysites, absolutely NO EDITING.
"Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - Groucho Marx.


OldMaster is off-line
04 January 2014 06:38
OldMaster
Photographer
OldMaster
Location
United Kingdom
Hertfordshire
Harpenden

CSD....pretty much as I said... +1


Suzy Monty is off-line
21 January 2014 06:13
SuzyMonty
Model
SuzyMonty
Location
United Kingdom
Cornwall
Truro Cornwall -enjoy travelling! -Published Internationally

Being naive, I didn't realise they edited singer's faces too
http://elitedaily.com/news/world/dont-believe-what-you-see-this-music-video-shows-how-much-the-singers-appearance-is-edited/
Elizabeth Arden quote - 'I'm not interested in age. People who tell their age are silly. You're as old as you feel' OR LOOK...


Bryony Edwards is off-lineSilver Member
23 January 2014 17:08
bryonyphotography
Photographer
bryonyphotography
Location
United Kingdom
Derbyshire
Mansfield

I personally believe that you should should use whatever tools, whatever it takes to produce the image you pictured in your head. Sometimes circumstances mean that the image isn't how you pictured it would be.

I am curious though - at what point do people think the 'editing' starts?



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