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In this course, photographer, author, and teacher Chris Orwig details the tools every photographer needs to retouch portraits to make them look their best while remaining authentic. The course includes an overview of the retouching process and how to develop a plan for a retouching project.
After exploring techniques to improve the overall photo, Chris shares his techniques for reducing wrinkles, enhancing eyes and other facial features, improving hair, and retouching makeup. The course concludes with a look at retouching skin and reshaping portions of a portrait using transformations, the Warp tool, and the Liquify filter.
Because the Liquify tool is so helpful in portrait retouching, I want to focus in on a few more mini projects using this tool. We're going to work on this image here, and what I want to do with this photograph is I want to correct the shirt over here. One of the things that you have to get good at with portrait retouching is focusing in on knowing what to do. This is a portrait of an actor, and the portrait, I think, is strong; he has presence. Yet, this part of the image, it's just a little bit distracting it. It kind of draws our attention to way that the shirt is pointing out in that direction.
I want to reshape all of that. To do that we'll use the Liquify filter. Here we'll copy that Background layer, and then we'll go ahead and name this reshape. Next, we'll navigate to the Filter pulldown menu, and the last filter that we used was Liquify. Whatever a filter you used last, it will show up here. Now, if you want to reapply that same filter, the same exact way, you can select that option here. Or if you just want to reopen the last filter that you used, so that you can then re-customize the way that you use it, you can use a shortcut.
The shortcut is Option+Command+F on a Mac, or Alt+Control+F on Windows. Again, that will reopen whatever the last filter was that you just used. So that could be a helpful shortcut if you're using this filter a lot. If not, you can always go to the Filter menu, and just choose Liquify. All right. Well here, again, we're going to use the Forward Warp tool. What I want to do is make sure I have a nice low Brush Pressure. My Brush Size is pretty good; this is the same size as it was before. Here I'm going to start to just tuck in that corner.
Once we tuck in that corner, though, what's going to happen is it's going to make the shoulder seem kind of weak, right? And that really was the problem; it all of a sudden looks like a strange shape. The front shoulder is really important in the picture like this, so I'll make my Brush Size bigger here by pressing the Right Bracket key. Now I'm just going to push this out, and by pushing this out, what we're able to do is start to create a whole new shape in this part of our picture. Then I'll create a smaller brush, and I'll zoom in a little bit on the picture, and I'm just going to nudge down this little bump that we have here.
A lot of time you'll need to do this, kind of just evening it out these little teeny places in your photographs. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in using this tool, and thinking that you need to do everything, and work on all these small areas. Well, not necessarily. Often it's just one thing that you need to correct in your photograph, and by making this correction, it really improves this portrait. Here, let's click on the option for Show Backdrop. Here's before, and now here's after. Again, to apply this, we simply click OK, then back inside of Photoshop, in our Layers here, we can see that overall before and after.
So this movie isn't necessarily teaching you anything new, except perhaps that shortcut to open up your last filter, but it is highlighting this whole idea of how we start to look at our pictures. Now that you're becoming familiar with the Liquify tool, I want you to look at your photographs differently, and ask yourself, okay, well what can I correct with this tool? How could this tool will help me make some subtle, yet significant improvements to my pictures?
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