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Retouching skin

From: Photoshop for Photographers: Portrait Retouching

Video: Retouching skin

When it comes to retouching skin, it's all about the details. So let's go ahead and take a look at another example. In this case, we have a high-resolution file, so I'm going to go ahead and zoom way in on the photograph. We want to zoom in, so that we can really see the overall texture in the picture. Next, we're going to create a new layer. We'll do that by pressing Shift+Command+ N on the Mac or Shift+Ctrl+N on Windows. Sometimes what I do in my own workflow is I abbreviate the names. I call my layers c1, c2, c3 for clean up one, clean up two or clean up three.

Retouching skin

When it comes to retouching skin, it's all about the details. So let's go ahead and take a look at another example. In this case, we have a high-resolution file, so I'm going to go ahead and zoom way in on the photograph. We want to zoom in, so that we can really see the overall texture in the picture. Next, we're going to create a new layer. We'll do that by pressing Shift+Command+ N on the Mac or Shift+Ctrl+N on Windows. Sometimes what I do in my own workflow is I abbreviate the names. I call my layers c1, c2, c3 for clean up one, clean up two or clean up three.

Here let's name this one c1, and I'm going to start in a clockwise orientation using the Spot Healing Brush with Content -Aware and Sample All Layers turned on. What I mean by clockwise is I'll start up here at the top of the photograph, and what you want to do is kind of settle into this process. Put on some good music. You're going to make sure you don't have any tension in your shoulders and that you have good posture and just settle into focusing in on all of these little details. Click, click, and click again. Next, work your way down the image.

And by working clockwise like this, it just ensures that I go through the whole image and I'm also trying to go through this at a pretty good clip here. I am not spending too much time on one area. I made a mistake there, so I'll press Command+Z to undo that; that would be Ctrl+Z on Windows. If ever things get a little bit smudgy when you're working with this tool, what you will want to do is create a new layer and then change the opacity of that layer. I'll show you that in just one minute here, after I just reduce these a little bit.

Next, go back up to the top and here we have now removed or reduced a lot of these different little teeny blemishes. I'm just going to go back and hit a few that I missed. As we make our way through this and as we kind of work around the clock so to speak, we want to look at that before and after, so that we can evaluate how we've done, and how all of these little teeny areas of retouching have helped us improve our photograph. When it comes to bigger blemishes, like say the wrinkles or the little freckles on the face, you want to create a new layer.

Click on the New Layer icon and name this one c2, and with this new layer, what you're going to do is use a Healing or Cloning tool and then you're going to lower the opacity. What that will do is it will help you to just kind of diminish the problem. You also want to use a really small brush that's kind of appropriate for the size of the blemish that you're working on. You don't want to work on two large of an area because what this can do is it can kind of create a funny texture, in the sense that an area looks soft while the rest of it has nice detail on it.

Next, we will lower the opacity of that layer. That will just help us to kind of diminish those wrinkles up there and the other little blemishes that we see. If you still have a problem getting out something, you just can't get rid of it. Well, create a new layer; call this one c3. Next, grab the Clone Stamp tool. With the Clone Stamp tool, lower your opacity; lower it to about 20% or 30%. Turn on Aligned. Turn on All Layers. And then Option+Click or Alt +Click in an area where you have good texture.

Just paint that over that problem area, because when it comes to skin details like this you don't want to remove the texture completely. Rather, by cloning over it with different texture that doesn't have the blemish in it, as I'm doing here, it can help us to reduce a little blemish without creating that kind of a plastic type of a look. So here the skin still looks really nice and real. I'll just go ahead and make a few more little adjustments with that layer there. Well, after we've made all of those different adjustments using our various Healing tools or our Clone Stamp tool, we want to group these together, so click in one layer, hold down the Shift key, then click in the other, then press Command+G on the Mac, Ctrl+G on Windows; that will group those together.

I'm going to go ahead and name these clean up. Now I have these grouped. I can see that before and then after. And of course, you want to zoom out a little bit. Look at your before and after at different zoom rates, because it's critical that the retouching that you did here fits the rest of the photograph. You don't want to have one area that looks perfect while other areas don't look perfect, or one area that's smooth with the rest of the image that isn't. So in other words, we want to work on these small details, but we want to do so in a way that it improves the overall photograph.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop for Photographers: Portrait Retouching
Photoshop for Photographers: Portrait Retouching

85 video lessons · 24146 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
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  1. 1m 58s
    1. Welcome
      1m 4s
    2. Using the exercise files
      54s
  2. 6m 49s
    1. Initial retouching considerations
      3m 51s
    2. Using a Wacom tablet
      1m 8s
    3. Exploring resources and finding inspiration
      1m 50s
  3. 37m 21s
    1. Where to begin?
      1m 19s
    2. Reviewing the basic cleanup tools
      3m 59s
    3. Removing small distractions
      2m 41s
    4. Using selections and cloning to remove distractions
      4m 26s
    5. Simplifying the background with the Clone tool
      5m 12s
    6. Removing a garment strap
      5m 17s
    7. Removing a distracting logo
      3m 43s
    8. Removing lint from a T-shirt
      3m 40s
    9. Cleaning up a backdrop with Content-Aware Fill
      2m 58s
    10. Cleaning up a backdrop with the Patch tool
      4m 6s
  4. 22m 31s
    1. Extending a real-world scene, part 1
      4m 6s
    2. Extending a real-world scene, part 2
      4m 20s
    3. Removing distractions for a creative effect
      4m 31s
    4. Using selections and Free Transform to rebuild image elements
      3m 44s
    5. Moving a person with Content-Aware Move
      5m 50s
  5. 28m 48s
    1. Removing small details from the face
      4m 50s
    2. Retouching skin
      4m 35s
    3. Reducing hotspots, part 1
      4m 32s
    4. Reducing hotspots, part 2
      4m 36s
    5. Reducing brightness with selections and curves
      3m 26s
    6. Using Hue/Saturation to minimize variations in skin color
      3m 45s
    7. Removing tan lines
      1m 53s
    8. Leaving imperfections in portraits
      1m 11s
  6. 37m 15s
    1. Correcting tone with curves and masking
      5m 39s
    2. Fixing exposure and color with curves
      4m 14s
    3. Correcting tone with blending modes and masking
      5m 22s
    4. Using Shadows/Highlights to improve exposure
      5m 28s
    5. Using Soft Light layer blending to burn and dodge
      4m 37s
    6. Exploring the burning-and-dodging workflow
      6m 35s
    7. Using multiple techniques to improve shadows and highlights
      5m 20s
  7. 22m 42s
    1. Reducing wrinkles with the Healing Brush
      7m 21s
    2. Working on wrinkles and details
      6m 51s
    3. Fine-tuning and making final adjustments on wrinkles
      3m 44s
    4. Quick wrinkle reduction with the Patch tool
      4m 46s
  8. 43m 27s
    1. Enhancing eyes with adjustment layers and blending
      4m 7s
    2. Adding sparkle to the eyes
      4m 38s
    3. Increasing color with Colorize and blending modes
      5m 37s
    4. Rebuilding the edge of the eye
      6m 34s
    5. Whitening eyes, part 1
      3m 54s
    6. Whitening eyes, part 2
      5m 42s
    7. Removing eye veins and sharpening eyes behind glasses
      7m 8s
    8. Correcting color and tone behind glasses
      5m 47s
  9. 11m 26s
    1. Trimming eyebrows
      5m 25s
    2. Darkening eyebrows
      2m 48s
    3. Adding mascara to darken eyelashes
      3m 13s
  10. 16m 47s
    1. Enhancing lip color and tone with curves and masking
      4m 23s
    2. Using Color Balance and blending modes to improve the look of lips
      7m 41s
    3. Improving the look of lips with the Burn and Dodge tools
      4m 43s
  11. 13m 49s
    1. Teeth whitening made easy
      2m 33s
    2. Exploring advanced teeth whitening
      5m 0s
    3. Automating teeth whitening with actions
      5m 9s
    4. A note on retouching facial features
      1m 7s
  12. 35m 22s
    1. Covering and correcting hair discoloration
      5m 48s
    2. Fixing the color of hair roots
      3m 3s
    3. Making creative color adjustments to hair
      2m 44s
    4. Patching a gap in hair
      4m 27s
    5. Removing flyaway hairs
      6m 18s
    6. Fixing flyaway hairs with a complicated background
      5m 57s
    7. Adding accents and creative color to a fashion photograph
      7m 5s
  13. 27m 22s
    1. Brightening shadow areas on the face
      4m 22s
    2. Adding color to the cheeks and eyelids
      4m 30s
    3. Modifying eye makeup color
      3m 52s
    4. Increasing color saturation and variety
      4m 17s
    5. Enhancing color with the Lab Color space
      5m 44s
    6. Using Selective Color to create vibrant color
      3m 29s
    7. Additional makeup resources
      1m 8s
  14. 23m 15s
    1. High-pass skin softening
      6m 48s
    2. Creating a mask for the skin
      4m 23s
    3. Softening and adding even texture to the skin
      5m 36s
    4. Adding a soft glow to the skin and details
      6m 28s
  15. 34m 36s
    1. Adding dimension using curves and masking
      3m 50s
    2. Reshaping a jawline with Liquify
      4m 30s
    3. Reshaping a shirt with Liquify
      3m 13s
    4. Reshaping a shoulder with Liquify
      3m 22s
    5. Reshaping the body with Liquify
      2m 35s
    6. Using the Warp tool to reshape a jawline
      3m 33s
    7. Modifying the body with the Warp tool
      3m 35s
    8. Changing shape with selections and masking
      8m 32s
    9. Tips for thoughtful portrait retouching
      1m 26s
  16. 36s
    1. Goodbye
      36s

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