Sunday, April 11, 2010


It's really hard for me to explain the way retouching works. There aren't much rules to it..i've met many retouchers before and everyone seems to always have a different way of coming across to how about they will fix the image.
My suggestions to you are , always shoot in RAW because it's always easier to fix balance and all that fun stuff.
The way I retouch is, I open up an image in Lightroom, I fix the white balance and color, sometimes clarity. Then I open it up in Photoshop. I always save my files as PSD instead of TIFF's/ But that's just my personal preference.
Steps I usually do my retouching in.
1. Clean skin from blemishes,little hairs, scars (if there are any), and if there are any dust spots.
2. Liquify if needed. Now dont ever overdo this because the model or agent wont be very too happy about reconstructing the mode's face. Or client work.
3. Fill>50% grey on opacity. Dodge and burn layer :) (now this will take a lot of practice and patience. You dodge the dark spots of the skin and burn the light once. It can take anywhere from 3-4 hours on beauty. It all depends on skin type, how fast you work and how perfect you want to get it to be)
4. Hair. If it's coming into an eye, or rally messy somewhere, then you do it. Hair is a lot of patience and practice. It's probably one of the hardest things to retouch and it's so frustrating. I'm still learning how to do it, and it's a mess. But you need to really have patience for it. I usually work with clone/healing tool on this.
5. Makeup, inhence, clean up blah blah blah. Eyebrows , color pop, smoothen, and all that fun stuff.
6. Play around with color. Shadow/highlights. These I usually paint in.
7. (clothing retouching, if needed to be done. But this I would probably do after skin/hair/makeup)
8. Save a layered file and one for printing.

ALSO not in all cases but most, I sharpen and put a noise filter on top.

Anyways! If you have any questions, just ask me.

Example of my retouch :



  1. Wow, that's really really good work. I wish I could see like a timelapse video of some sort of how you work as this is something I'd like to learn as well. I guess one just has to read up and practice, huh? :)

  2. i've been thinking of doing a video thing, I just need to get that program that captures what i do on screen. I might do it over the next weekend :D

  3. this might be what you're looking for: its an online program where you can broadcast your desktop live online and people can view it as your work and such. you have the ability to interact with your audience and the video you work on saves in your own personal archive. i've used it and its pretty great :)

  4. how are you ..?
    you are a fantastic photographer
    and i'm just asking if you don't mind if i save some of your photos in my laptop ..
    and i'll not remove your name from them
    only put them like a background for my desktop
    or put them in my messenger like a display photo ..
    also they'll help me ..

    the only thing i couldn't know how ..
    is the how can you clean the skin
    i truly search in youtube & i couldn't find it ..


  5. Very nice! I do pretty much the same thing, but I'm still getting used to it. You're doing great :D I haven't messed with hair much yet though...honestly I'm afraid to go there lol.

  6. Very helpful, but I'm not sure I understand the fill>50% bit.

  7. Hey Hannah... Great work here. Can you please let your audience know the photographer of the image? Thank you.

    Dallas J. Logan

  8. Wooooow i love it Hannah, can you pls make an Videotutorial? That's too awesome!

  9. just wanted to say thanks so much for the comprehensive blog :) i'm 17 [18 in september] and just starting to properly get into the photography industry... will hopefully start test shooting for a Sydney modeling agency soon-ish [once the fashion week mayhem has passed a little!].

    i only got photoshop a few months ago and am still shaky at using it, i was just blown away by your retouch of that beautiful photo :) how long have you been practicing/working with PS? i'd kill to learn how to do the dodge/burn layer properly... skin retouching for me is still quite basic. wondering if you have any other quick tips you wouldn't mind sharing to help make the learning process a little smoother? [not that i expect to leech off of your hard work and time with you just giving away your secrets haha].

    in any case i'm glad i stumbled upon your blog, hope you keep posting and well done for your success!!! age really is irrelevant if you're good at what you do and you want something badly enough :)