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Archive 2012 · portrait help for sisters bf
  
 
smallrewards
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p.1 #1 · portrait help for sisters bf


hey, well, I took this shot of my sisters bf, and I have been trying to edit it and make it nice. After soem work I produced this

aaaDSC01132 by bmglen, on Flickr

but, I am not happy with the lack of contrast between the wall and him, but if I raise the contrast or the brightness much at all, he gets these crazy demon eyes happening....

I think part of the problem is that he wasnt evenly lit-just a ceiling fan overhead. But, if you have any suggestions that I can do with very simple editing software, not adobe...let me know.

Edited on Feb 06, 2012 at 01:59 AM · View previous versions



Feb 06, 2012 at 01:52 AM
JohnBrose
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p.1 #2 · portrait help for sisters bf


should have had more light on the eyes and shot looks quite blurry probably both motion blur and misfocus. You could do a layer for the eyes and brighten them and add a catchlight on the eyes. Then add contrast to the shot or at least to the shadows.


Feb 06, 2012 at 01:56 AM
smallrewards
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p.1 #3 · portrait help for sisters bf


Well, i agree with your comments, and have learned some from it, but I dont have the equipment to make it happen

I guess motion blur makes since though, I hadnt thought much about it, but he was rocking slightly on a rocking foot stool and I was standing up hand holding an old Manual lens wide open at f1.4 . When in A, I have found that my camera likes to keep a 1/30 shutter speed at the lowest iso possible most of the time, and I hadnt figured out to force it higher by manually setting the iso-allowing me to still keep partial auto. Oh well, its ok though, I suppose, for just running around at my sisters bday grabbing some shots! But man, a sharply focused capture can be so hard!





Feb 06, 2012 at 02:26 AM
JohnBrose
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p.1 #4 · portrait help for sisters bf


I would suggest just reshooting if you can with a bit more light so you can maybe have the lens at f2.8 and shutter speed at least 1/125. Try to get some more light filling the eye sockets. Eyes always look better with some "sparkle" light reflected in them. He does have a nice, natural smile and you took the shot from a decent angle.


Feb 06, 2012 at 03:46 AM
AuntiPode
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p.1 #5 · portrait help for sisters bf


I'd suggest practicing with your camera. Electrons are nearly free.


Feb 06, 2012 at 09:35 AM
 

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dmacmillan
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p.1 #6 · portrait help for sisters bf


I agree with the above. However, you captured a very nice expression and I like your framing. He looks like a nice guy and I bet he'd be willing to pose for you again. I'd take the camera of "A", especially when using a manual lens. Is it manual focus, manual aperture or both? Remember the "one over focal length" rule for shutter speed. For instance, with a 50mm lens, at minimum your shutter speed should be 1/50.


Feb 06, 2012 at 11:47 AM
cgardner
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p.1 #7 · portrait help for sisters bf


The sun isn't my choice of "key" light due to the problem of contrasting dark shadows it casts on the face. Here the problem is also that the "key" wasn't well placed creating shaded eyes and mouth and a "splotchy" highlight pattern where the light does hit rather than a "mask" pattern that is more easily recognized as the 3D shape of the face.

Here's an edit to try to correct those deficiencies and "normalize" the tonal range (steps too numerous to mention)...






If reshooting, which I would suggest, try this approach:

1) Same pose, but put the sun directly behind him keeping it off the face and shirt entirely.

2) Bring along a 3 step ladder and stand on it with camera 8-9ft off the ground and have him look up at the camera. You can achieve a similar camera/face angle but having him look up will get the sky light in his eyes and mouth.

3) Looking very critically at the shadows refine the pose so the skylight is creating the "mask" pattern of highlights on the front of the face. I will be very faint but it will be there. As you turn his face you'll see the near side go in and out of the shadows just as when facing the sun as key light.

4) Shoot in M mode. Raise exposure until you start to see clipping in the highlights of his skin, then back it down 2/3 stops (two clicks on camera). That should optimally expose the highlights on the shaded side of the face.

5) if possible have an assistant hold a white card reflector to the key light side overhead with extended arms. That will do two things: enhance the key lighting effect and put catchlights in the eyes from the reflection of the card. If you want square catchlights use a square reflector. If you want round catchlights as in my edit use a round one. Since there aren't any windows outdoors I find round ones more natural, but that's a subjective creative choice.



Feb 06, 2012 at 04:32 PM
alatoo60
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p.1 #8 · portrait help for sisters bf


It is a very nice soft high-key portrait, I really like it. It just needs a little kick in terms of burning and dodging, bringing up contrast, and making his eyes more alive. Evening up the background does not hurt either.
Here is what I got:






All procedure takes about 5 minutes or less. Here is the description:
First, identify where the highlights in his eyes are, and draw reflections first with a soft brush at 50% (sample from the highlight on his nose), then change to the pencil tool, make radius a bit smaller, and place a sharp bright dot within a soft reflection, on upper right.
Then, do some burning and dodging. You need to pick a soft brush, set dodge tool to 20% midtones, and gently draw soft highlights left of his pupils. That will add some natural transparency that was lost on a photo. Then do some burning around his eyes, to improve contrast of crease and lashes, with soft brush, burn tool set to 8%, shadow. Search youtube on instructions how to improve eyes in PS - there are quite a few.
Now to his hair - dodge highlights with soft brush, highlights, 10%, and burn some shadows with burn tool at 10%, shadows. Clean up background with clone tool set to 50%, soft brush. Switch to Lab space, go to curves, and adjust luminance curve only for desired contrast. Sharpen - and you are done.



Feb 06, 2012 at 09:57 PM
Bob Jarman
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p.1 #9 · portrait help for sisters bf


@alatoo60

Quite informative, and not a set of techniques normally applied (at least by myself).

Nicely done to maintain the high-key aspect.

I like the pose - fundamentally sound, conveys warmth, smile is natural.

Bob




Feb 07, 2012 at 12:35 AM
AuntiPode
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p.1 #10 · portrait help for sisters bf


There are ways to salvage an image in PP, but it's better when starting out to work on improving the original captures. Later when you reach a reasonable level of camera handling and image control, work with PP is a great way to polish and improve your images to take them to the next level.







Feb 07, 2012 at 05:47 AM





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