My Approach to Retouching

I’m often asked how I edit images for my clients. It’s an interesting topic, and one I’d love to explain my approach to a little more.

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The truth is, heavy amounts of retouching are only really done for one of two reasons:

1) There are circumstantial flaws in the image which detract from the overall quality of the presentation

Many of these flaws can be corrected before the image is even taken, which is why I and my eagle-eyed team are always on the look out for strands of hair caught in a sudden breeze, peeking bra straps or lampposts poking out of heads as we work with you during your photoshoot!

I also make sure I dedicate enough time to getting to know you before your photoshoot… meaning that on the day, there are no surprises. I already know exactly which poses, angles and outfits will work perfectly for you… and I’ll integrate them seamlessly into your experience.

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2) The photographer or client is labouring under the belief that the woman they are photographing simply isn’t beautiful enough in and of herself, and must therefore be manipulated to fit a certain ideal

We’ve all seen the horrendous examples of perfectly lovely women being made into plasticised dolls in the name of “fashion” (indeed, I wrote a popular post about it a couple of weeks ago).

Happily, I am not in the business of photographing high-fashion models for big brands – I get to spend my days working with real women, in real settings.

The vast majority of my clients come to me looking to create images that will allow them to communicate from the heart, and present themselves to clients and collaborators in an authentic way – and I’m sure you want the same. So why on earth would I ever want to Photoshop you into a plastic, doll-like version of yourself?! It doesn’t make any sense.

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Bearing that in mind, my approach to editing your images is what I would deem ‘light-touch’.

I can / will:

  • Remove small imperfections like spots or teeny scars that bother you
  • Whiten teeth (a little – toothpaste commercial is not a good look – trust me!)
  • Remove small background objects or imperfections such as a person walking past in the distance
  • Make eyes a little sparklier and brighter, and lips a little more ‘glossed’
  • Smooth fine lines or wrinkles gently, whilst still maintaining a natural skin texture
  • Lighten shadows under eyes or bring out deep-set eyes
  • Photograph you from angles and in locations that flatter you and your natural beauty

I can / will not:

  • Take 30lbs off your body weight with heavy-duty ‘liquifying’ tools
  • Change the colour of clothes or jewellery you are wearing
  • Rebuild parts of the picture that are not actually there
  • Change your hair colour or give you digital hair extensions

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Because the truth is – I don’t WANT you to look like a perfect doll. I want you to look like YOU – the best, brightest, most beautiful you, but still YOU.

So if you’re ready to step up and shine, and want to book your photoshoot in to get 2016 started with a bang, get in touch – I can’t wait to create some magic together! 🙂

‘Til next time,
Chelley.x

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