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Men's Portrait Photography

Lesson 24 of 26

Post Production: Contouring and Imperfections

Jeff Rojas

Men's Portrait Photography

Jeff Rojas

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Lesson Info

24. Post Production: Contouring and Imperfections

Lesson Info

Post Production: Contouring and Imperfections

I actually have a couple retouching options online on my facebook page and make sure he's in there free for retouching so here we go facebook dot com slash sage your fudge which is I can't see my own name s a j o r I f f e j and I'll show you guys how to use their actions for retouching so you're gonna get a quick demo on using such actions so when you download that stage if ej dot com slash sorry facebook that comes this sage if ej you're getting retouching actions here so one of the researching actions is dodge burning frequency separation okay frequency separation just quickly is separating the the texture from the color of your image right how does it work in black and white like what actually happens well let's look at that you're running a high pass layer in a low pass later on the same same image for those that aren't familiar with retouching techniques I have a blur layer underneath that would be my color if this was a color image I'm only manipulating certain skin tones in cer...

tain areas the other layer is let's just minimize that that the other layer do that is details if I look in here this is the only thing that's and there's the details of your skin pores hairs anything that has to do with the definitive line is on that high pass later so the details of your face are separated from the colors of your face, it's easier to just retouch that way. So when you have blemishes and little like pimples underneath, I can reach such the color without manipulating the hair that's on top of it. Okay, so let's get blurred, for instance. Now, the reason I also retouch even in color photos that will go over that quickly, uh in a moment is that I run a black and white layer over it so I can make sure it changes are according to lights and shadows and not color variations. We'll discuss that motel, so I'm going to do black knight first, use the patch tool on ly teo showcase what we're trying to do here. So I'm using the blur layer, which is our color land super simple, it's just a low pass layer underneath. I talked about that being the color I'm taking the information that's here because this this little not that it's bothering me, it's, just visually distracting from how close we are to your face. We don't see that normally and just clicking and dragging other areas so we can start lightning those areas if we need to notice the hair and the pores are always the same, like the pears in the pores haven't been manipulated. When I go back and undo I can still see the hair that's there I can still see the pores that underneath the only thing that air switches the color on the mason if I have any let's say, any acne that we see I'm go ahead and take that information and start drying out information keeping the hair that's their keeping the follicles later they're the only thing that changes the color change the difference between the darkness and shadows of that specific imperfection same thing under the eyes if we're not happy there just dragging that over quickly show you the difference between doing that in color and black and white and why I still use a black and white layer even if I'm doing that with color imagery so money is the same image that we have in the shop. How hard is it to tell shifts and colors and the yellows and reds that's what we look at we changed a couple variations in your skin tone without knowing what we were way were doing that change and that subtle changes between this little spot and that low spot I'm looking at a color image does that look like much difference? You can't really tell you can't see that difference, but if you're going to go print out damage you can start seeing every single detail that's in that photo so those of you that are shooting let's say high school seniors are you trying to print that your work or send it to your clients? You can see that and prince you can absolutely absolutely seethe shift shifting colors you can start seeing some of the great asians in these areas I can't believe I'm touching retouching lines this photo we have we have imperfections that we have here if I wanted to remove that what can I do for these little areas so it's tough to see changes in skin tone even some of these areas like where am I supposed to take information from if I wanted to drag over its search looking splotchy like everything is I'm sorry that's body blotchy I don't know what to do so what I need to do is again actions make it easier for yourself. Lindsey adler has a great class and skin skin one o one which is amazing class in different skin tones and skin textures and how to fix these little details were covering the basics here so super simple again if I would go ahead and use that low pass layer or the colors we talked about how many different colors and see I just dragged a little darker oven area if I'm trying to drag around what am I trying to do with these darker areas and highlights I can tell there's so many different colors and variations if I use one specific tone you may have a blank flat spot in one specific area for instance if I wanted to fix this and I dragged us over that's what you start seeing that giant black spot that's there so imagine that all over your forehead it starts looking miss matt like mismatched so that's why I always recommend running a continuity layer meaning and that's what that's my own version my own word choice okay I'm using a black and white layer toe on ly manipulate lights and shadows I told you it's easier to see lights and shadows and it is saturation and color we could because we can tell lights and darks comptel like structure on one another we can change things what happens if this is still not enough detail to tough that's lighter dark ifit's a screen that's flatter and you're like I can't really tell the difference what's happening okay continuity layers so another level select curves dragged down on your curves I'm starting to see where it changes are I used curves and use new layers tell mountain gods seeing what I'm trying to see I mean I'm starting to see okay, you have a darker spot there you have some darker spots in certain areas like those are the things that I'm seeing now with a continuity layer that I may not necessarily let's let's like that before and after except for that one little tiny blemish there that's cause that fixed it go back. Look at some of these areas that are up here. It's very, very difficult to kind of see those those hidden layers that are here, that when we when we bring that information back, I'm starting to see where some of shifts in colors are. So if I would try to switch little areas like I know this is darker, right? This little patch here slowly. You sure upside down. See? Or you whatever. This is right here, I wouldn't be able to tell naturally is very, very difficult to get low pass. So if I needed to agree, touch this, I would take that same information. I want to go ahead and take some new information. Kind of bringing it into these other areas toe flattened out the gradation of your head. I know it goes from dark to meet himto light that's. The only nuance of difference was that little c shape. So I want to make sure that it's even think about drawing and sketching. So if you if you have a darker toe light I want to see darker toe like everywhere. The second is a darker shade somewhere that's what? My eyes and physically, physically seeing any distraction, any distracting elements now, what have I had? What have I not changed so far in the image? I haven't switched any tones. Sorry, any texture on the skin haven't switched any pours. The only thing I'm working on the skin tones, right? I haven't diminished any pores by using let's say the clone stamp told just yet haven't switched any features we talked about aj's being out of focus, we talked about changing some of these chairs me personally for men. I don't do a lot of skin retouching, aside from close, normal blemishes that you would see, but I do a little bit of man grooming with, uh, with little like eyebrows like man grooming iris like this is visually distracting, so I would go ahead and do he's fixing his eyebrows in about three seconds in real life this teo okay, let's, go here. So I'm taking the detail so there again, it's on two different layers of the skin texture. Still there. I'm not worried about that. I'm gonna take some of these darker areas out. It's more uniforms, let's. Look at that back and forth again. Only thing a switch your eyebrow hairs gone like I haven't. If that's the most that I'll do in regards to we like man manicuring your face manscaping to hear details. Little eyebrows they're just if I were to do a print that a little visually distracting those are the only things that I do and I do that again I have it with that those top layers helping me out in regards to visual interest do I want to keep this guy's and texture? I like little moles and I like a little little imperfections I don't really worry about those things next thing is as you guys are re touching people's faces asked them are you okay? Are you comfortable with me fixing your scarred you want me to take your car away? I've had models where they have scars across their foreheads one quick story at one model who had a scar on his forehead and I asked him, hey, do you want me to retouch that? Because what do you mean? I said, well, I notice in all your images that you've ever had in your portfolio I haven't seen a single scar he goes no one's ever taking the time to ask me if I ever wanted that or not? I've had it since I was two it's part of who I am can you keep it? And I was like, sure, why not so it's interesting to see people don't ask they assume that people want to remove things feel free to ask somebody if it's a scar don't mention wait because that's a different issue if you feel like you're comfortable talking to somebody about a scar, you could do that but you generally comptel you can ask them are let's say if if you could tell that there we talked about perception of how people perceive themselves but you can see there's an issue with how they see themselves hey, they're trying to hide the scar we talked about cell phones before and how they visually see themselves you can retouch scar you can leave this car what is it doing for man? And I find it more interesting like I find it more interesting and imagery so if you notice the only thing I've swishes his little manscaping, his little follicles, I would only switch little changes in darkness and shadow in color images I'd probably lighting some of these layers up. I talked to you guys about the fact that the blur layer is the color layer okay, next thing I'm noticing is that you have a darker section here I can go ahead and take this information and be extremely quick and proficient noticed the difference here, but now I'm having great asians of color doesn't look correct. So what can I do to highlight those areas without changing the skin tones? Well, here's a quick tip, what I would do is create a new blank layer okay, making sure that I'm using to clone stamp tool I can switch to clone stamp, so I want a light in that dark area. So what I do, they switch my blending boat where you guys from the blending moods for brushes, just anybody that's new in photography, blending moods are going to be your best friends. I think lindsay also had a blending modes class at one point she's awesome switching my opacity on everything. She's got everything except men's portrait hostile down teo twenty five, because I want something that is going to justify changes without necessarily making too much of a change. So what I want to do is amusing the option brush to start clicking in certain areas that I want to highlight other areas notice it's coming out darker than then it's supposed to be a but watch this, all I'm doing is removing darker areas. I'm lightning areas that I'm seeing imperfections, and I can do that all over the skin if I need if I need to. I recommend doing that when you're doing frequency separation when you're separating details from the from the actual colors, because if you do that with frequency separation on the skin, what you're doing is you're lightening up texture, so I wouldn't recommend doing that with everything being flat together, okay, so let's, look at this again. Okay, I'm just going to quickly go through that I'm going to look back at the original image sorry let's take the economy layers off as matter of fact let's see what we've changed so far he's going to see his eyebrows one two, one two the only thing that have switched is literally he's like I'm clammed up dealing that have changes, lightness and darkness that is distracting elements to the face I haven't switched haven't haven't used any type of liquefied if I feel like I want to direct light or your excuse me directing audiences eyes into certain areas you something that's called contouring we did it with light yesterday way had a couple questions online about contouring and post productions were gonna start working on that now I'm gonna go ahead and delete my top two layers my top continuity layers okay have something that's called dodge and burned on that same effect I'm going from scratch at least you guys can see what's happening I'm putting two layers on top of my image, taking a dark layer and a highlight layer burn layer and a dodge layer okay, take my first layer switching to curves I'm goingto darken up the image because I want I want dark shadows in certain areas and highlights another room asking things out so there's a few that aren't familiar with masking this would be a perfect time to learn when it comes to darker layers and we're changing curve adjustments what we're actually changing is not only exposure were also changing saturation so the first thing you want to do is switch your blending mode on those any any layers that you're working on with curve adjustments to luminosity now I'm working on exposure of skin and not saturation so I'm making areas darker or lighter now you look like a pumpkin here you ate too many carrots let's go ahead and invert this layer so I'm using command I teo to use a layer mask a masking everything out all I'm using the crows adjustment so I'm gonna go ahead and change that curses russian talk there that was too fast I just spoke like yoda using the curves adjustment I want to switch the layers so it says dark and this in most cases is called burn but for purpose that what you call it burn darkness just for people that are new to the whole burden dodge thing okay, I'm going to use my white maya my paintbrush toe actually start masking out certain areas in darkening areas I'm gonna do it one hundred percent capacity so you can see visually what's happening I'm asking out the darkness this is what I'm doing okay, I'm showing the darkness that that I want to showcase obviously I want a brush that has a nice radiation effect to it right, but this is more or less what we're doing here. I'm darkening areas that's one hundred percent capacity. I would never do one hundred percent capacity on anyone that was really funny. You went from having that, you know, proud of having eyebrows. It was awesome. So first thing I want to switch capacity down to twenty percent, I wouldn't go under that because then it becomes tedious it's like okay, darkness you can't really see changes it's very, very subtle. I try to say it's twenty percent twenty five percent and then if I need to say if I went overboard I can lower their opacity right on that specific layer that's just a quick tip that goes backto the mentioning of to use amateur or do you use the light to change? It depends on what you find easy since that exact moment um burning dodge, I want it dark in some of these areas. I want to talk and hear in your eyebrows because we discussed that's visual interest. The eyebrows brooding is is kind of my go to affect. Next thing I wanna do is kind of dark in some of the areas that we have around here. Let's see perfect let's see what's happening? I'm at one percent. I thought it said eleven go back let's, go here target's in these areas it doesn't seem like it's doing a lot just now darkened here dark in here bring visual interest into these areas I'm literally painting around the same way that we did with with that consort guy I'm finding the same areas that were tryingto bring attention to so highlight here I'm going to bring a new so you guys now this is what we're starting to do I'm starting to bring visual interest to the center too dark I went way overboard so I would whatever you do bring it back like forty percent because a lot of times we go overboard and anything that we do so lower their passing that layer you can proudly go to sixty and be safe back to yesterday I mean, you went ahead and you showed us that part of the different facial types and so you're just reinforcing what you were doing with lighting which was acute those different kind of ways to flatter different facial types, right? Absolutely absolutely the next thing I wanna do and we we discussed this yesterday when it comes to your shape face we want to highlight here highlight here dark, dark, dark, dark, dark around here just visual interest here down the center of the face well, I want more visual interest towards your forehead and I want it towards your ten your forehead still dark I'm not thinking about your head I'm talking about your actual forehead here I want to let in some of the area so what can I do? Well, the same way I did the the dodge sorry the burglary into a dodge layer or a lighter layer so go ahead and switch to exposure that I really do exposure which are a new layer to curves bump up our exposure lighter areas okay? We're gonna go ahead and invert that layer and we're going to paint out the same way we did before. Same way that makeup artist does this for us we're drawing visual interest here. I want to draw visual interest in some of these areas here that we just went over let's go back some of these areas underneath case so let's look back and forth I basically did they make a butter job on set which is just directing light to the centre your face so you're not looking at your forehead you're not looking at your top your head? What what am I trying to emphasize now if you have a subject that has any issues under their chin area here here's what you can do you can use darker layers underneath same way that we did before you know what we actually set up a new layer let's set just quickly curs bring that down just to reinforce what we did before okay and invert were masking out those areas if I need to darken some of these areas up we'll see what that looks like their I'm starting to dark in there and just defined jawline so darkening up some of the double chin see only focusing here yes speaking for a lot of black males that saved you also get a lot of those general there get like serious razor bumps haven't you how would you actually I know this is not a retouching class well I mean would that be the same type thing that you were used it's another omen immersion class so we still got to talk about that let's do it now but that first things first I need to see it the information is extremely dark right? So what I need to do set my curves said it whole nucor's adjustments drag up the information that's there like you said the issue you have shaving bumps on the way all get it so certain capacities I can see them here I couldn't see them before because the image is so dark so that goes back to the continuity thing if I need to see in darker areas that would see in a print that I don't see on my screen what of reason continuity layers that kind of help you with the kind of help you with fixing all those little blemish marks so let's set a new layer again, we talked about saturation, we visually say see, saturation is different than lights and shadows like we see oranges and tones and it's different so, so difficult all those different colors and changes that we we're not focusing the highlights and shadows let's go back to switching a new layer it's a black and white and now that we did that, how much easier is it to see all the little imperfections I'm visually seeing anything that's there so let's go back to the first thing we want to do is r blur earlier, which is our underlying color layer? So I'm gonna use that patch the same thing that we did before I can start pulling information out lightning this areas you're years, it is gone, but I still have the texture of around the darkness of that area. Well, I could go to my details later and find textured now I lost it through my eyes because I looked up I can find the textured areas that fit closest to that area is I'm trying to blend things the same way, make a bar's blends makeup, that's what I'm trying to do so I can go through all these highlights if I need to same thing if I do the details later again, I'm taking out the darkest highlights and things in certain areas I'm not changing I'm changing the texture I'm not changing the color underneath so I generally start with the blur layer underneath and then worked in details because if if the blurred underneath isn't working it's because there's a highlight of sorry there's a detailed layer on top that's actually information that you're trying to remove let's go here blur take that out even though I did that the uh the imperfection that you had here I can still see the detail there under there this isn't getting removed I could feel like no matter where I move the colors underneath I can still legitimately see the er is it that you have he's not gonna like me after this let's go here it's a little bumps that you have cat let's look some of these areas okay now we're getting to saturation right? Okay this is more or less where we want to be how is that going to affect what we're seeing first thing I'm gonna do is uh remove curves remove three black and white layer so I know that there's imperfections under skin what can I do? I can change my curve adjustments tool sorry the curve adjustment later the continuity late because what I'm seeing is purples right that's actually the skin tone that we have there that's being changed so what can I do go ahead and hide that layer for two seconds okay? I'm gonna go back to setting a new layer I would do a new layer, probably on top of my details blank layer and what I want to do I can do a little something a little easier than kind of fixing masks I want to find a color that's as close to that area is possible that the most highlighted areas they want remove the dark areas, right wanna move the purple areas? So what I want to do is kind of zoom in, figure out what the highlight is or what the lightest part portion of those images are, and I probably even come into these areas let's go something really, really like again, look at all the differences in color and skin tone uh, we're gonna use a paintbrush and on that new layer on a lower rapacity, I can start painting things out. So now I'm starting to see little purple areas going away because I'm asking out the purple right? Because the color that I'm using is closer to the bottom image. So it's therefore it's painting out those purple areas away so let's get that quickly. So I'm starting to remove all the little purple areas because I'm literally blending cullerton areas and if you went too far, just start lowering capacity I mean it's really that easy again, some of these little areas that you have here and then if you're having a hard time seeing just go back up here it's the same color that we're using underneath since it's it's on a new layer and it's underneath your curves you're not manipulating the color that you're painting on visually so right now I'm only painting what I see into these areas again I'm going to do something just very very quickly I would I would do this a lot better if we're not limited on time but watches I come into these areas I see these little purple areas that you have here again I can still select a clone stamp tool and I should be able to just that's way too like notice you've got to go all way back to the bottom take off your cover adjustments stool go to blur goto the highlighted or the lighter areas of that image go back up to the top and in a new layer again I do think the new layers because if you went wrong something happened on specifically or you can go back to lead it and start over so let's go back so I'm taking some of these areas out okay next thing I told you yes I just did that extremely quickly but we're going lo rapacity I would stay down till even eighty percent just cause I know I overdo things the first time I do them we tend to be like excessive with anything we do with retouching so that's first and let's hide are curved tool let's look something quickly again if I had had the time I would sit there and fix every single one of these imperfections that also works with ease drier areas on your face taking the lighter colors for instance on a new layer taking let's say some of these lighter areas here I want something super light and just painting out little areas and kind of just lauren opacity so what am I doing? I'm blending those areas in its same thing a makeup artist on ly with color and changes of skin tone in pigment so let's back even from some of the subtle changes that we had what are we doing we're drawing attention to your face we're taking out little perfections last thing with retouching your faces your eyes your eyes we discussed are out of focus what happens if I want a little extra something your eyes like what can I do first and foremost I know the textures in your skin I had run a double high pass layer on your on your eyes this how we do that we talked about the high peslier being the details later if I if I go ahead and take that same layer and multiply it look at all the extra detail that I get because I'm taking to detail layers and putting them on top of each other I'm adding details it's almost like hdr if you wanna call that we're adding a bunch of detail except I don't want to see detail anywhere I mean everywhere because I don't want to see so much pours what I want is just the eyes so what do we do mask going ahead and invert that layer we're only going that was a big difference we really gonna go ahead and mask areas that we want to see detail and so I'm going to use on a low rapacity we're going to do it for purposes of this up to about thirty percent start using a high pass later on your eyes and it doesn't look like much change until you do this it's a big difference so using a high pass later I can start focusing on certain guys that were out of focus so if I was using that one of five other things and told you guys I like texture I just don't like super textured skin for certain people with him I want to see a little bit more hair on his eyebrows too uh general tiny bit more interest watch this wow joking let's go back how much are we actually seeing how much texture have we got? Just one of those small changes if I wanted hair on your on the top portion of your lip I go ahead and run that detail layer again same here save their certain areas again I'm drawing interest what I'm trying to do is do the same thing a makeup artists or or any creative does this is going to bother me there we're just going to quickly remove that again we'll go down to our blood earlier visually see it here move it over fixed let's see the difference between these two? I mean just just in your eyes your eyes are quite a bit focused if I zoom out I have a good starter image the only thing that I would say is I probably remove some of the bags under your eyes not so much I can't believe I retouched let's uh let's get a new layer and what I want to do is I told you guys before using clone stamp tool removes details in certain places I want to use that same clone stamp tool on light in on a low opacity so I can start removing some of blemishes or some of the bags that he has under his eyes using it online and what it's doing is this it's starting to remove some of the text underneath by multiplying anything start taking any highlights that we have here and bringing them up here so I don't want to grab, for instance, the highlights in these areas so those of you that are familiar with frequencies frequency separation if I did the same thing, the texture is not the same you want to find textures that are similar to whatever you're trying to fix so what's the closest skin that we have that matches under your eye just time to get lower than that that's it it's a little lighter that that area if you're going to darken it works the same way find skin that's going toe accentuate that specific air again here let's look back and forth again it's on a low opacity seventeen I didn't I didn't manipulate it so much as I would let sit in a female portrait doing something for skin perfect skin and retouching let's look back and forth I haven't liquefied him at all but where's the visit visual image right here haven't touched liquefy whatsoever haven't made somebody heavier lighter anything I'm just showing where I want the subject to see using highlights and shadows and contouring that's how you kind of generate image and make somebody look a little smaller without ever touching that uh this little button right here because this tends to scare quite a few people they feel a little comfortable the second you liquefied people they're like I don't really look like that but if you said listen look out of camera that's what it looked like like that's your actual compression your face we talked about compression there your skin and everything that we've done look att quickly I'm bringing your attention it's dark in these areas I'm just focusing your face looks like it's shifting up compared to where it was before like that's when I'm drawing inspiration I'm gonna go ahead and save that image and told you guys I generally work on my retouching with color images before I ever twist them to black and white so I don't have to do it twice again we're smarter, not harder it's not being lazy working smart that hard okay, close that out exactly close this out I'm not going to save this one because we're gonna do the same thing we did before. Okay? Let's look at this quickly so if I would do the same if I wanted to do the same thing to this and regards to color and I wanted to change same thing I already made the selections we had, we talked about this I'm gonna go ahead and take this first photo clicked the second sink what I want is the basic color the tone, the clarity, the sharpening let's see, we're going to search the treatment to black and white black and white mix split toning noise radiations and we went through color correction same way synchronized. So now we have a black and white image retouch the only thing that I don't like is that clarity. So I generally after I do that first, that first high pass layer that we didn't photoshopped tend to lower clarity so we don't have to see such sharpness I'm still pulling back like I'm doing things intentionally like extreme and then pulling back because I do want to see texture, I just don't need anybody's like super national geographic look on every single person's face so let's, take that again, going from an image that looks like I keep looking left and I have ok going from an image that's flat, right, it's going to something that has a little bit more drama in regards to the final black and white image, I'm gonna go ahead and just click undue. I might do it several time see one, two, three, four, five it's almost done so let's go back between those last images. Reset this these images here, back and forth where my drawing and like information, I'm using contouring to kind of guide your I'm doing with flight doing what shadows doing retouching, exaggerating everything we're doing to give definition to the face. So before you ever do a black and white version, the reason that my photos looks doing because my attention is drawing to a certain areas of using highlights and shadows to look in certain areas and adding a tiny bit of clarity to the image itself. So it's not just presets ah lot of it has to do with definition of where you're trying to draw the eye to a lot of it has to do with the basic principles of drawing and makeup before we do anything. So I'm incorporating those little details to my image is how much retouching that we really do, like in those couple minutes, not much if I looked back and forth, I mean retouching, meaning skin, like fixing skin and switching blemishes, I fixed a couple blemishes and fix anything large. I fixed your eyebrows and I took some of the bags in your eyes like that's just the reality things super simple to the point, and I'm okay with a photo like that, you know, I just I want to see just minimal changes to people's actual appearence guess have any questions because it doesn't seem as though you don't have a big ton of retired guesses mean, so you're not going to do like a full glamour returns or anything so approximately, like, how much time do you normally would you normally would spend on the name? I guess it depends on what it is you're trying to do or do you have, like, an average time this question quickly, but I'm gonna show you guys this, um, uh, should you guys an actual editori that recently photographed just to kind of be a little more open with let's. See, harriet, why are you taking forever? Uh, rated. I told you guys I rate everything right on camera. So, here's, what we're doing? Um, my final image in my actual image. This is the difference. Let's. Go to one sixteenth. Okay. You guys saw this photo yesterday, but you guys didn't see any retouching that I wanted of doing. I'm gonna zoom out tiny butt right there. Skin retouching retouched done where you touch all I did brown and make it sorry brown and sits there there there's no make up artist sunset like I literally did this with a model his natural hair however he came in and my stylish stylish that generally work with kimmie. By the way, kimmy smith accessory to is is doing all the styling it's super super simple. I'm not spending honestly more than five minutes on an image like I'm everything has to do with highlights and shadows. That's what my images look like they have death in regards to highlights and shadows in totality it's, it's very simple concepts that I'm using to draw your eye certain areas it has nothing to do with a quick pre set like quick presets can get you to start it. But it's really where you draw your I'm lead things too, and using lights and shadows to really get everything in death together. So even looking at some of the images that we have here, where where am I trying to draw your your actual? I like how how is darkening up the background? Same way that is barking up the background for you? I'm darkening of the background to give a tiny bit more depth for my subject, like those are things that I'm considering. Same thing with here. I mean, how much my way talked about highlights and shadows. What am I doing? Uh, texture wise, not retouch retouch, not recess retouched taking out blemishes, but I haven't liquefied anything. I haven't manipulated everything that's what? He looks like a camera again, len choice figure out highlights and shadows looking at somebody. And how do you focus on their center to make them look their best? So if I go back and forth there's not much retouching that yes in particular, was it all natural light? You didn't toed out any? You're gonna laugh, there's a lot of times I'm one of those people that purposefully goes out and does something dumb just to see if it's gonna work, I try to it seems I've gotten I feel like I've gotten maser with my photography because I'm more so paying attention to small changes the reality is that there is a lot of work and effort that thought process that go into each image nonetheless I'm going out there with the stylist the model myself no assistance first thing I'm thinking about is attention to light where it is like look best luckily I got lucky with this day it was a cloudy day cloudy days jack saw fox overhead I could move that person around try to get the light to look I mean with this specific subject it's obviously the sons from behind its room lit right but how much settings wise you guessing one one thousand two hundred fiftieth of a second at three five two hundred thirty five millimetre I mean I'm shooting everything match like there's no modifiers or not he's a reflector in there and this is what the actual image looks like because my focus is on his face and the fact that the light is getting diffused even though that there's a directionality light not to pitch her again but she did have something on location shoots lindsay so that's lindsay adler had on location shoot with same principle like using the soft box overhead too to kind of give the light a little bit of glow the other thing is he where we shot before I think we discussed this yesterday like the location itself it's cement on the floor so that's actually acting as a giant reflector anyway so even though it's kicking back it's acting it's own reflector sum considering where my subject isn't relativity to where we're standing some considering where what light, what position I can have my subject that light looks best on that that specific person that goes back to my thought process behind learning the basics and kind of building a way up I recommend going back to make basics for a lot of people you know I did it I did it myself I was doing a lot of attention a lot of a lot of lighting a lot of again using let's say speed lights everywhere I went it's not efficient like you needs to kind of learn how to manipulate things imagine imagine being able to go back in time doing everything that you knew now and how much you could change that's what I started with my photography I said if I go back to basics and I went backto one o one where I just had my camera and a lens and a person how could I make this look? Okay? Well I have the experience to say I know where light direction is I know how light works and what modifiers that why can't I just do better images than when I first started and you'd be surprised how you can build up from that point and I mean, if you start tearing yourself down for your personal projects about recommending that for every specific client cause it's not efficient but for your person for your personal work if you start going back to basics, you would be surprised how much stuff you feel like you can learn or grow from or what you can improve on I mean it's it's almost like the that thought process being able to go backto ten years ago and figure out how you khun kind of build up from there. But what would you do differently on a fashion image versus what you're doing there on the portrait? I actually don't change a lot. I mean, all I'm doing is the drama behind the subject in the background these days like, for instance, go back to so you guys gonna have quick story on this one not that one quick story in this one he is actually looking. Let me just reset this that's what the image it looks like out of camera uh he happens to be talking to my stylist and this is actually one of my clients that he's not just a model he's the one that I mentioned with the bowler hats he actually has a company that he's really he's twenty three twenty four but he has all these different lines that he just launched in japan in different areas he's talking to my stylist about the company and I'm like I want a candid photography and if I look back that's not realistic to me like I don't like the shots compared to this one like I actually feel like he's cold there but he's he's trying too hard to throw over his hat and we had a discussion on half do you wear hoods and he's like not very often you can tell like I look I look at it and there's visual cues to say that's not really as opposed to he looks colder in here because he was actually cold so candid photography here he's talking to somebody he's in thought that's actually really I haven't messed with anything I just looked for the specific moment I was like okay he's talking he's listening he's doing my thing he's jonesing on whatever somebody saying anything's photo there because that's thought process he can't fake that like that is natural sewed feature so haven't changed much like in totality use any sort of uh sharpening or clarity on the clothes on the texture for the clothes you do anything but especially them lets go in I'm going to show you more or less what we have here suit for the specific piece we had to focus in on textures of the leather and zippers back and forth the only thing I want is doing is using contrast, helping out with visual cues and the piece itself on and then when I did the dodger burn effect I dodge burn certain areas around the zippers to make him stand out more that is fantastic I love it let's go ahead. We've got just a little bit of time let's ask a couple questions and then we'll take our final break. Torsten winkler does jeff use different black and white conversions like changing the reds, lighter greens, darker centers that something you do on each image? Absolutely so here's my quick. So my quick settings if you want to call it that, I have random names for everything. If you have noticed there's actual names like doug and jade and jessica f and kid anyway, I digress. The's are actually shoots out ahead and I usually use the models first name for that specific set. So the difference between mod wass something that's a lot more clarity like a lot clear and dramatic versace men's add one. I had done something where this is something that somebody wanted in internet, like the tones I see every single thing I d'oh. So there are several prison studies, and I mean, you guys can start seeing. Look, if you look at the right hand side and look at my settings here, what actually changes it's not much, I mean, really, what? I'm changing it's just subtle nuance by the way that's just I switch a lot of just highlights lowering my highlights making it look the tones a little darker we talked you mentioned reds and yellows I do go into photo shop and let's say an image like this at end photo shop just quickly and I use channel mixers right within photoshopped you guys thes channel mixes it all quickly just in case bridge user can channel mixers just making sure see you later channel mixer and this is the way I do saturate photos like this is the exact same way I would saturate anything. So going to channel mixer selecting monochrome they have a bunch of recess and as you can tell, I'm kind of used ran the people's names again that's just my thing to kind of figure out what's the best contrast image this is a good starter for me as a photographer because I liked the tonality and the clothes I don't necessarily like the tonality and the skin tone that's analogy that's not even a word tone in the skin here's what I can do happy with the tones that are in the jacket with channel mixers I can create two layers I can go ahead and hide that layer I'm gonna go ahead and put a new channel mixer say if I wanted something on the face and let's go channel mixer here monochrome, I want something that's a little more contrast id on the face generally let's go orange we're going about two blue it's gonna be blue cat and just kind of darken up certain areas he looks very flat he looks very dark so let's say I'm happy with this let's make the difference between those two uh one two uh not much of a difference you know I'm a little a little lighter one I think I just have preferences of my life I like the I like his face here what I don't like is the clothing so what could I do? I can go ahead and say where we mass things out before just mask things that I want to see in that tone so I inverted my mask we were heading in large my brush I'm on a quite low capacity just going ahead lighten up those images so I'm using high pass in that capacity if I needed tio change certain things there are kind of focus your eyes on certain airs for me I would do that for the subject. The clothing is extremely bright for my taste in that it's visit it's visually distracting if you look the whole image I'm not looking the person's face and it's staring at the shirt like constantly staring at her and if the shirt isn't something I'm trying to show, I'm really trying to show the jacket then I need to focus on only lightning thie jacket ever so slightly without making the jacket look sorry lowering the brightness of the shirt without messing with the jacket other things I can do is I can set a new layer to curves drag that down see if that works note it's only gonna make it gets a little darker or I can use contrast to bring my eye towards the jacket so I can go ahead and paint out curves specifically on the jacket say that looks like here so my eyes are starting to leave more towed towards the jacket in contrast I use channel mixers and curves in order to kind of fill that another thing I this's gonna bother may so uh just the tone curves in his face so I can kind of dark enough in certain areas and keep their other things that I do is you asked me about my fashion pieces I want to show him I'm going to work it up those backgrounds somebody used those same tools to darken up the background so my visual interest is on him so back and forth you know what let's go so now my contact the contrast and everything's kind of leading to him on focus more so on the jacket and the tire rather than just his face or just the background it just makes it super simple howling that really take if I wasn't speaking for three minutes four minutes. I don't really spend much time. Honestly, the most time that I spend is taking out blemishes, super simple and even that I don't. You see, like it's very much keeping a texture, keeping everything with men. You want to see texture that she was the real message there face the contrast.

Class Description

Learn the art of posing men in Men's Portrait Photography. Jeff Rojas will show you how to direct men so they look natural, masculine, and confident in front of the camera.

In this class you'll learn posing, lighting, shooting, and editing techniques that will compliment all shapes and sizes of men. Jeff will demonstrate your options for lighting men for portraits, fashion, and commercial images.

You’ll learn the 10 main reasons men don't feel comfortable having their picture take and how to make them feel at ease in front of the camera – which will lead to better, more natural images. Jeff will teach:

  • How to help men pick proper attire
  • Flattering male features
  • Workflow and retouching

Don’t let men’s portrait photography intimidate you. Learn the skills you need to get bold, flattering shots of your male subjects every time.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Photographer's Style Guide for Men

Men's Posing Guid

Photoshop Black and White Presets

Adorama Gear Guid

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes


caroline ross

I watched this class for free and am saving up to buy it. First of all confirmed! Sigma lens are nothing to be ashamed of and since I love my one main lens, Sigma I immediately felt a rapport. Then listening to the fascinating insights about men and their feelings when confronted by a lens and...what to do with folks who have shaved heads or a little large. Some of the tips were great! Adding a decoration on suit front like a flower or handkerchief, and how to get the suits looking FIT! and well, I plunged into man world and it was a super education. By day two I was amazed by Jeff's generosity. Basically all his experience, all his favorite lighting techniques and painstaking attention to detail. I would have to watch Day two zillions of times to actually be able to absorb all the scenarios and effects. Im going to buy some suit clips Jeff and clip a bunch of suits in back and front to gorgeous my male subjects out. Thank you again for a wonderful, wonderful class.

Lee Crow

I've taken a lot of photography training in the last couple of years. Jeff is outstanding. I didn't realize that this content would have such an impact on me. The lighting sections were the best I've seen and the psychological impact of us men having good photos is a wonderful subject to bring to light. The class is great. Jeff is great. CL is great.


this course was worth every penny. Full of practical information and excellent demonstrations. Jeff needs to quit with the crotch comments though was like ...really AGAIN? why are you so obsessed with saying crotch crotch crotch good God. Apart from THAT (which I think was just silly nerves) I really do recommend this class. Jeff is actually very very good. I admire his work. Thanks Jeff I learned a lot!!