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When it comes to working on your photographs in Photoshop, it's easy to get excited about the big, bold, and dramatic changes that you can make. Yet in order to make those changes, you first need to focus in on the small details. The more time that you can focus in on those small details, the better off your bigger changes will actually be. It's kind of like if you've ever painted, say, your living room. You almost need to put in as much time getting that room prepared as you do in painting it. In other words, you have to cover up the furniture, tape off the walls, clean the walls, and then after you've done all that, you can add that new big bold splash of color.
So as you seek to get good at Photoshop, and in particular, at working on your images in regards to retouching, you want to start off by cleaning those images up first, focus in on all of the small details, and while it isn't as exciting, many times by focusing in on those small details, ultimately it'll make your overall images look that much better.
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