View Full Version : Portrait post processing
11-08-2004, 06:37 PM
Can anyone recommend any web links for portrait photoshop techniques? I see so many portraits that have a kind og blurred yet sharp quality, or china like smooth skin, that I would love to know how to acheive these techniques. Any ideas?
If you are using Photoshop here's a very easy and quick way to achieve a glamour type image:
Duplicate your image, so you now have two identical layers.
To the top layer apply a gaussian blur, you can be fairly heavy with it, do a bit of trial and error to find the best value.
Set the opacity of this layer to around 50%, you can alter this for a stronger or subtler effect, but 50% is a good starting point.
Now select the eraser tool and rub away any part of this top layer where you want the original sharpness to remain, hair, eyes, teeth, background and clothes are places to concentrate on here, you can adjust the opacity of the eraser for more control.
You'll find this will give the skin of your subject the soft look that glamour photography is famous for, and as you are working on a seperate layer you can easily get back to your original image and start again if you make any mistakes.
When you're happy with the results, flatten the image and save it under a different name.
I've just used this technique on your Rajasthani Woman portrait, so you can see the effect you can achieve, it took about two minutes in total.
I've also tried different techniques like the one Mike advised but also found out that instead of applying the gaussian blur filter, a moderate <i>antidust</i> filter was more subtle and convincing. Use the eraser tool as Mike mentioned...
Try also something else that looks like a soft filter effect : duplicate your layer then apply a gaussian blur 3.0 ratio to start, then select <i>DARKEN</i> as a blend mode, reduce opacity as you wish.
11-09-2004, 11:42 AM
Thanks very much for the advice guys - I'll try them out. Thanks for the WS Mike - gives me some idea of how the effect works.
A superb site for advanced Photoshop techniques is one created by Carl Volk, he's now sadly deceased but the site has been kept on, it's well worth a visit, only downside is it's a bit slow, but there are some great ideas to be found there.
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