Shooting for Composing

Hey guys,

I made a small composing for Noreen Scheel. Generally I already pretty much liked the lighting situation here. I was using a beauty dish from up top, lighting her face and upper body, also using a reflective white board to lit up the lower body/legs.

Short description of retouching approach

In the retouching, generally my first step is skin retouch. I use the frequency split technique here. Simple:  I work with 2 layers, one for tones and one for details/structure.
The retouch is then actually carried out on the detail layer up top. I found this the best method to retain 99.9995% of the skin texture, while being able to kill most of the most obvious blemishes. (I really don’t use this to do it all…but the more bad stuff I can catch here, the less work I have later on…but there are some things, I much rather resolve using dodge & burn. The idea: that way I feel like more in control of what I’m fixing with D&B. There is a not so commonly known gigantic disadvantage with this skin retouching method.

I usually show my students what that pitfall of this method – and of course offer a simple workaround…(if you wanna know more about my workshops/tutorials re skin retouch -> just drop me a message here via the contact form).
In another step I cleaned up some of the stray hair that was bothering me upstairs.

My main focus is dodge and burn, in which I create at least (if not more) 3 D&B layers, one for details / skin retouch / toning corrections, one for carving and the latter for sharp details (possibly hair or eye reflections).
And then in my final step, I exchange the background with a nice wall image I had in my collection of freaky backgrounds 🙂 A dark composition kinda matched the mood. I added a graduation curve layer, attached to the BG layer to help me a bit with the overall toning, so that model and background still have a matching tone. Hope you like the end result of my composing 🙂

Before_After_Noreen_EDITEnjoy 🙂