Senior Portraits: Create the Ultimate Experience

Lesson 22/38 - Leslie's Editing Process


Senior Portraits: Create the Ultimate Experience


Lesson Info

Leslie's Editing Process

I pull all my photos into bridge I create a folder for the client so it'll usually say something like just their name kendra and then underneath that will be so for this purpose I did kinder's pre shoot and kendra on the roof so that's what I have here and then in there are all the photos and my process is to go through and coal and then I only look at the ones I marked as what I want to edit and then I'm going to go through and edit them and then I'm going to save them in a folder called kindred edited and then I'ma go and batch rename them kendra one hundred two hundred three that's how I do it I'm sure there maybe even a better way to do it that's that's what I did so when your culling images I honestly just go with a gut reaction on they look att you know because there are several as you can see here there several in the same siri's so may run through the siri's and then go back through and say okay that's the one I want so that's what this process is so in other words, if I starte...

d here I like that one better than the first two someone do command eight and turn it green that signals go for me on then once you you know turn them all you know I started them all are turning them all green if you will then you can on lee look at the ones you turn green and that helps me because I don't want to see all the ones I'm not editing or just stressed me out to see all those photos staring back at me and calling me to edit them and I don't have time so so anyway so that is the process that I will let's see let me just call a couple of these, okay? And then so I'm looking for may be a full length and a closer up three quarters in that same siri's on dh then I have a horizontal in that siri's I'm going to pick that the one with the least amount of hair going through anywhere because again I have several of them, so I have the luxury of trying to find the one that doesn't have the most editing. Yeah, I just wanted teo re clarify for everybody these air not the images that we just took no roof but we're going teo yeah, but this is the pre shoot that you did. Yeah today yes. So kendra took kendra out around here because, you know, with creative live we had to shoot on the roof and I wanted to actually do it a shoot that I would typically do, which would be to walk around a couple of different locations so I gave her but I felt like if she was coming here for three days I wanted to make sure she had, you know, both experiences really s o that's what these are and I will show you the ones on the roof as well. I just happen to open this folder first. Yeah, so again, I'm just, you know, like I say it's a gut reaction I'm just going to cut through these really fast. That was really cute. That one's really cute. So it's just a matter of me going oh, yeah that's super cute making sure I'm getting a variety, you know, typically they might change outfits, so I want to make sure I go, you know, and get enough of each outfit, make sure I get from vertical, some horizontal tze and each in each different look. So that is what I am really doing here is just kind of calling these that one's cute and it's usually uh oh, that's cute, you know, a gut reaction. So it's nothing really I'm not like over analyzing them. It's just oh, I have a reaction to it, I feel like they might have a reaction to it and I'll take it so you actually like okay, so see these air very similar so I might like compare the two real quick and same I actually like the tilted head, so we're going to start that one. I had a little wind blow their some might skip over those, and then we have a no smile, so you might want to, you know, do one of those okay said that once cue again, I was messing with the lighting here so you can see that those airway ever exposed, but then I adjusted it and that one is a little bit better as faras exposure, so I'm going to choose that one. I love the head tilt on that once I'm going to choose that one and her laughing those air cute. However, I'm not in love with the fact that that hair is over her neck. I don't really want to better shop that's I'm gonna look and see if I can find something equally is cute if I have to, I can go back to it, but again, hair on her neck, even though that's a super cute photo that one's cute and there's only that little tiny here that I could take out said that when it's going to be a much quicker process and see, ok said this when I cut her hand off so I would go with that one I said just little things like that of course there's artistic cropping and you can make that call but I don't love that her fingers were cut off there so just go to the next one that obviously stepped back on oh that was killed and see that one's just fun she laugh in those are cute I like to make sure I include that we got a little too much when they're that one's pretty there like that one yeah it's just surprised I mean I'm not going to spend too much time on this but you know you can see how you just quickly go through here of course if you were opening this in light room I think it might be even quicker and that's fine and you can you know what is it ex for reject p for pick thank you see that's how little I used e but I do know that but again it's what process works for you love the yellow behind her I think that's pretty okay that's probably enough for you guys to just understand the culling process not that you don't already know that because I'm sure you guys do that as well but it's always nice to see somebody else's reaction to voters and why you picked something other than you know why you would take one over the other s okay so then you know I just quickly picked twenty images so that is what is there so those are all the ones that I would add it so then I'm you know no one have twenty images to edit, okay? And then if we went teo the roof shot we would do the exact same thing we'll quickly go through these and determine which one we are going to edit unskilled there's one on here that would love that one and again just quickly going through here I'll not super cute you guys can react tell me what that's also lead way no one's killed just you know, getting a good variety here now you know what you're you're looking for, but yeah, you kind of verbalize like your friend comes up because you're doing it really really fast really your eyes go all right no no it's ok, but what do you what do your eyes doing where they looking, yeah was clicking again and looking for a gut reaction? I'm looking for a good facial expression that I feel like, you know, hits me to be honest with you, I'm looking to make sure you know again like, for instance, that one hurt feeder cropped off so it probably wouldn't choose that one because probably I noticed it when I was taking a photos I'm hoping the next one has her feeding it so that's something I'm looking for sometimes poses don't pull off the way you think they do so you just skip on through that and, you know, go to the next one and that's fine, I am looking for, you know, things like extra editing if if something has some elements to it that I might have to edit out, I might see if there's another option. S o I'm looking for that, you know, most of the time I am cropping in camera, but there are some that I may have taken with too much negative space, so maybe I just did that, and so I'ma look for that if not, I can always crop it once I get in the photo shop, you know, just just really looking for a good exposure, making sure the face was bright, like I like them to be things like that is what I'm looking for and again, after you get used to it, you know, I mean that's, why I can do it fast because I've done it so much that I couldjust quickly do that, you know, I'm looking for one that might really, you know, attract the mom so cute smiles laughs I'm also looking for the variety to make sure I provide them with not all vertical poses, even their most of them are vertical, as you can see, yes, I'm looking for that again, I'm trying to get through like each section so if I did you know outfit number one in this location I'm going to pick a certain number of those and then move on to the next because we don't want a ton of one outfit versus another, so I'm looking for a variety within each of those segments if you will so let's say outfit number one was on the roof I'm going to look for verticals horizontal school link you know, three quarters close ups and pick a variety of those and then move on to the next segment outfit location type thing maybe we stayed in the same outfit but we move locations I'm going to try to pick the same sort of variety within each segments so in my mind I'm breaking this up into where we were, what she had on and then further down to the type of composition it was if you will awesome thank you for loving you so yeah so there's that and again you know I am doing this quickly these are cute but I think this might be angela's right? Well of that one that's awesome that was pretty so yeah so you know that right there makes me react right there she's smiling, she's genuinely smiling I'm not saying smile and she's you know, so that would attract me automatically so things like that again, you know, make sure you're not picking one that that has too many things that you might have a better shot out because time is money and then I don't want to spend already do it the slow way as we all know I don't use light room, so uh ok, so anyway, you get the culling process, so let us edit a few of these, okay? So I'm going to open this one already had open, so let me and you can see that patch tool is on her face because it was taken out a blemish. Let me open one from scratch, though, because that when you don't get to see the camera so let's open that one, okay, so you see how came we're all opens up first here's all are sliders, you can tell that this one is over exposed a little bit, but again I was trying to make a movie day look much brighter s o I ever exposed on dh? I don't care that the back is blown out that doesn't bother me, I care if she were blown out, but that's just my style. So I am sure that technically I probably should have taken another one with the sky exposed correctly and put him together, but again, I don't want to take the time to do it and my clients don't I notice that you don't care about that s o I am, I will pull it down just a little bit just so I could bring some of that back right about there and again, I'm not necessarily looking at the exact same number, pulling it down every time I'm pulling it down to my taste, so one in this may be pulled down, you know, point forty and one may be pulled down point two or whatever. So it's just a matter of knowing my style at this point and no one where I like it to be again, you may want to adjust the temperature, you may want to adjust the tent, it does look a tiny bit greens, I'm going to put a tiny bit more pink into it, and I think I personally think overcast days look green, so that to me is probably why it's a little bit on the greener side, so I would have just that a little bit. I usually don't adjust any of this stuff too much. I do pull up my clarity just a little bit, maybe you're an island of ten is usually what I'll do, and then, you know, if you wanted to add some contrast, you would do that here, I don't want to, but that's what you would do. You can pull it down if you're more lightning theory may be pulling your contract down is probably more something that would fit your style we get backto wass okay highlights you can you know, make him even brighter he could make him darker whatever again it's to taste I usually leave it alone shadows again you khun lighten the shadows darhk in the shadows well, again you know I don't have to really do this a whole lot or move it a lot just because I tend to take it the way I wanted to look anyway so but those are things you can do you can up your white shaken up your blacks take him down whatever you might want to do but generally minus just maybe a little bit of the temperature may be a tiny bit of the tent on a little bit of clarity is usually what I do and that might pull down the exposure just a little bit because like I said earlier attended over exposed by one or two stuff maybe that's a little much and so I could pull it down so and then I would open it they're okay so at this point I would do my actually do my sharpened defogger first no real rhyme or reason you could do it after but I do it first just run it and then um flat in the layer and then I'm gonna go in and start to do some of the cleanup where I'm going tio take out those hairs right there there's like a little little massive hairs are there and again there's a million different ways you can do it maybe you like the patch tool the best maybe you like the clone tool the best maybe like the healing brush told the best all of those work for this purpose for big masses like that I would probably use the patch tool because you can just make a circle pull it over oh that's kind of getting into that area yeah andi select again that could have been a coming andy but my immediate reaction is to go straight teo select select so yeah, I would clean that up a little bit I might would even take this little tiny bit out right here and again because it's a bigger a bigger amount the patch tool really works for that if it's like a small little hair sometimes the brush to make it the exact size of the hair is a better choice so I kind of just used a little bit of all of them whichever you know which everyone I like the best for what I'm doing there looks like there is a few hairs on her forehead so I'm gonna I'm gonna switch it to the healing brush told just so you guys can see how that works make it a little bit bigger and then you take a sample here with option click and then just kind of go over that yeah can you zoom and more on the way so I thought we could see as totally thank you for telling me here help okay okay so again I'm going to the healing breast tool I'm gonna clone out a couple of blemishes here I meant not claws on healing brush using the healing brush but you could use the clown tle same thing you would take a sample click on there sorry that gets kind of boring watch me teo but it takes time to make sure you get everything out so make sure you do that quick question while you keep keep doing that. Okay, but would you you only do this to the images that you have cold down right? They're not going to do this on all the images before you show them no, I'm now there. How much do you actually do before your sale session? I usually cut it down to about anywhere from thirty to sixty is what I ended up showing my client so there's the ones I'm editing of course you know again it's your business so you can do whatever process you like if you use light room maybe you just run it quickly through light room no heavy editing but maybe you just make some minor adjustments and show them more photos and then they pick the ones and then you do a more intense edit that's always a possibility and it's just not how I've always done it I just column I feel like the less they have to look at I don't want to overwhelm them they can't make decisions so anywhere from thirty to sixty seems to be a good amount that they can, you know, either near down or decide they want all of them or whatever their purchasing that that tends to be anywhere between there and, you know, sixty would be more for a shoot that maybe had tons of different looks, maybe more for that top session where they are getting their hair makeup changed and stuff just because about nature that has more variety than then the other one said that's where that higher number might come in, the girl brings five outfits and we can fit them all in I'm all game for that, but that night means she might have a few more images, you know? Eso yeah, but basically yeah do the editing first and they see edited photos, right? But and again you're not editing everything you're editing just what you're going to show you what I'm going to show and then are you going to dio another edit after are you trying to get a finished image right in this session is ended yeah, I finished image. What they see is what they get very spent the timeto to do it. You know, if for some reason they were to ask me tio, change it the black and white just because they I had a special request or something like that, a night would go in and do that for them. But, yeah, they're seeing a finished image, and that is what they would purchase at that point. That was always something that I was never sure whether I should spend the time up front writer. And I think I would say something like, I'm going to do a light at it. Yeah, and then do a heavier than you can do that. Yeah, but then it was always a pain to go back, go back and do it right. Exactly. So it is just that you know how you set it up. I want to be done when it's that ordering session, you know, as faras the images, I want a place in the order and get that done and have that as fast as I can. I I feel like if I had to go back and edit. Then there would be another week or two before they had teo, you know, before they were able to get it, you know, because you have on the time to do that so that's what I would do okay, so then the next thing after you get all the blemishes and and I could clean up that hair, but I'm going to just try toe move forward here I would do and under I clean up the under eye and again there's a couple of different ways you can do it, you can't clone it out, you can clone on normal or you can clone on lighten either way. Um here's another thing I will tell you a lot of times I don't create an extra layer, but you always should, but I get so used to know one how to do it that I don't take that extra step, but you really should, because we mess it up, then you can get rid of the layer so it's a best thing to duplicate the layer and do the these blemished cleanups et cetera on a new layer, so I didn't do that earlier but anyway, so you could I could say you could do a couple of different things, you can actually patch it out, you could just circle it and pull it down and be done, you could clone it out on normal you could probably use the healing brush tool on that or you can clone it out easily might lighten it just whatever you choose to do so again, I might take a sample and just kind of come right over here and if you do it you know too much you don't want to do it too much because all of us have, you know, skin underneath there you don't want her to look like completely like perfect I guess um so you would just press that that then you could come right over here and pull that down just a little bit just to bring some back so it's not too perfectly perfect, right? Eh? So you could do that again? You could do the patch tools, so if I were to dio, you know, I've already cleaned it up but let's just pretend that haven't that was terrible, ok, so that now we're just circle this and then pull it down and then again, if you're off on a new layer and it was too much, you could pull that down as well. So there's a couple of different ways you can do that it's probably just a matter of what you get used to and how you do it but you know, clean up the under eye circles that will give her a polished look there on dh then you know if there's anything in the background that you need cleaned up at this point you need teo get that out really at this point um I'm probably this is so blurry I'm not goingto really probably worry about that whatever that thing is, I'm probably ok with that um let's say I would the cloning a mite with did the patch tool earlier to get those hairs out, but that doesn't really look all that clean to me some might would go back in here and try to clone it a little bit more that was leslie while you're doing that, I was actually a question that had come in from megan mackenzie will people in the chat rooms talking about wondering if if part of these backgrounds were distracting for you when there are cars or what have you from the roof? But I wanted to point out that this was as we talked about when we're doing a photo shoot this was for demonstration purposes in terms of being up on the roof, right? Exactly exactly so I probably wouldn't choose a place that had all the elements that the roof adam and we were not only fighting rain but we had wires going everywhere he had polls going everywhere, there were definitely cars, but as you can see surprisingly the way I took it, you don't really know him on a roof not really, you know, so that's the way you can handle that I mean, I just really blurt out that background so I wouldn't have to worry about what it is you can see the space needle right there, so if you really wanted to get rid of that, that might be something to get rid of just because the full space needle is not in it, so it doesn't really add any value to this photo so you could quickly take that out clone that out the other stuff really just kind of blurred together to me, so I don't it doesn't it doesn't bother me if I were on a normal shoot and there were cars, I would probably just choose a different location I wouldn't stand there and take it no one I had to go home and photo shop there's just too many there's too many options out there, I think that I could just move to a different place or maybe I can strategically shoot it to where she's covering up something or you know it's all about where you moved to so there definitely ways around that and I would do anything to get around having a photo shop out of car if I can it just is not what I wanted a s okay, so anyway I probably would take this out, but for editing for you guys is purpose you just clone it out patched out etcetera att this point I would add the skin softening and I'm going to show you there's a million different skin softening ways to do it okay the coffeeshop powder room is the action I mentioned earlier there's also portraiture there's also may be a totally rad skin softening right I think there's a totally rad one from wrong I'm sorry but I do think there is one of those so again it's what you get used to it's what you do portraiture is great andi I have that I can show you that but also the coffeeshop powder room is great too and again it's free so especially for those starting out that maybe don't want to spend the money that one will do the job so okay let me find it on here so we're going to do the coffee shop one day flatten image the layer that we just cleaned up on flatten that and then we're going to play this action and I you know I like it because you can really control how much and how little you do right again if I were taken every bit of time to clean up this image I probably would have gotten rid of those a few little blemish is right there on her shoulder again patching him out easy fix okay so the first thing I would do itself in the skin so I'm gonna get my brush definitely watch the opacity um you do not want to do it at one hundred percent maybe somewhere around forty is usually kind of what I do let me make it bigger it's so quiet in here we need some editing music do you add it with music no it about with the tv on I always have the tv on what's your guilty pleasure oh my gosh I love tv I love it it's my favorite thing in the world pretty much other than my kids uh and shopping so re runs of friends uh reruns of sex in the city hdtv yeah and then at night scandal oh my god I can't wait till scandal comes back all right and right is like awesome and then what help still revenge revenge is good soap opera type stuff I mean truth be told you are going to really get to know me real good think I'm the cheesiest person ever but I watched the young and the restless every single today that's still on and I watch it every day and I don't care you can make fun of a mother that stays home and watches the young and the restless I eat lunch what you're watching the young the right and your editing and welcoming well you can start watching creative live light room class exactly allow that while you're editing totally exactly so anyway yeah there's a little tidbit about me just what you wanted, right? Even though I haven't seen it all week and I'm like going crazy here what happened? I'm sure it will be the same when I get home okay so I'm going to brush it all make sure you are I clicked on the mask there and make sure your brush is white because the mask is black so you want to burst in on the white it's always the opposite so I'm just simply going to brush it on again I'm not heavy on the skin softening so you know if you want more you can obviously up the a passage e there but I want to be able to still see you know her makeup her pores you know all that stuff because that's her skin that is and then I also make sure I don't on lee just do it on her face because you don't want her face to look super like smooth that the rest of her body not look smooth so I would oppression all make that bigger make it quicker I don't know why I'm not using this mouth it would be easier if her legs aren't in the pictures on a story about that so that I mean it's easy peasy used brushing on and you know she's got a clean look on dh then I do use the eye to find one but again do not go crazy on this one because I don't make ar look like an alien or something and make sure you're you know you're a passi may be about the same would be fine and just again is your taste but I would just go over that it just sharpens the eyes a little bit and then another thing is this bright eyes layer now this one really can make him look crazy so I don't actually use it for on the white, but if for some reason the blacks of her eyes were not showing up is much or if she had eyeliner right here and it maybe got smudged a little bit when you were doing the under I think if you turn this black and really lower this may be like seventeen and then get a really tiny brush it will just add a little bit more black in there again we'll see how it went down too far, but you can see that it made it black right there so I'm gonna step back a little bit on that that it does that if for some reason you needed it, she doesn't need her blacks or showing up just fine, but sometimes you photograph somebody with really light eyes and you may want to you know, just at a tiny bit around where naturally is black I'm not adding anything that's not natural I will show you, however, with the white side of the brush does just so you can see how crazy it can go. Okay, so I have my opacity up and I it makes it right, a little alien looking right, right? So I wouldn't do that, but, you know, you might just do it on a very low opacity, and that would be fine, so I'm going to step back from that. I don't tend to like it because I always get worried it looks fake, so and I wanted to look fake, but, you know, a little bit might might be goes a long way, so maybe let's tio twenty here, maybe add a little bit there, and that just gives them a little bit of pop it in her eyes and that's perfect. It has two more layers and three more layers has a white whites, which means the whites of their eyes, I don't ever use it, white teeth, very rare that I would use that. I mean, I guess somebody really had cem teeth issues, I might would use it, but I don't again, I just would be very careful and do it to taste and don't do it to the extreme and then there's a vignette layer, I never use that, so I was flatten image at this point. Okay, so now is where I add my color you might would add your black and white or you might what had driven vintage we might would add your mat if that's your style but this is where I would add color and the easiest way I do that if I get the sponge tool and I said it to saturate and again make sure that it's not on maybe about twenty five well here um and then I just brushed over the color that's already there and have it pop just a little bit more a lot of times if you have a white background that maybe has some blue tents in it maybe maybe she was in front of a medal metal building that to the eye looks blue and it looks white but it has some underlying blues if you sponge over that it'll bring out blue, which might be something for if you like color it would be a way to bring out color so I tend to do that again. I'm just I'm just brushing over it given the everything that has color just a little more saturation really that I can control it this way a little bit better than saturating the entire image because back when you're using a cr and you might pull up saturation it's going to saturate the entire image when I'm brushing it on I can just brush it on where I think it looks good where it doesn't look good also you can use your dodge or your burn toll if you want to brighten up anything she's got some highlights here in her hair so you could use the dodge tool to kind of bring out some of those highlights if if you wanted teo I think that's way too much so I go back a step that you can see that but you know just pull down this a little bit and then give her a little bit more highlight if you wanted teo and I mean to me that image looks awesome I like it again I like a bright image so if you don't like a bright image that might be too bright for you but I like a bright colorful happy to me it says happy yeah but again you know you've got add it to your taste so you may like a little bit more contrast in there you may like some darkness and they're around that you know you may one of them yet around there you can always do that adding a multiply layer and then painting that on just on the outside of her and then you would have the background darker than her you can also at this point start playing with your your layers and near style of layers I do usually add a soft light layer um and then I take it away down some adding a tiny bit back in their source coming trust and stuff, so that is pretty much it of what I do again. It's, not a lot. I don't need to do a lot because I take the image the way I won't image to look anyway. So that is, that is really all I do. Andi, I flatten the image, and then I save it into an edited file, save as, um, so I'm gonna go to pictures, uh, say, I will save it as a j peg. Let's see, kendra roof will say that there. I'm going to save it as a j peg, and we are good to go.

Class Description

High school seniors are energized, creative, and fun – and the best photographers know how to take portraits that capture that spark. Join Leslie Kerrigan for a guide to designing, marketing, shooting and sustaining a senior portrait business.

In this course, you’ll learn everything you need to know to create senior portrait sessions that aren’t just a photo shoot, but are memorable, once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Leslie will share her unique approach to creating a style closet, providing wardrobe consultations and keeping up with the of-the-moment social networking tools teens use. You’ll learn about connecting with seniors’ personalities, interests, and sense of style to ensure their portraits are every bit as unique as they are. You’ll hear from the teens, themselves as Leslie hosts a roundtable discussion with a group of teenagers who will talk honestly about what they want out of their senior portraits and how to reach them. You will also explore ways to leverage that personal connection into more sessions, sales, and referrals.

Don’t miss this opportunity to become the dynamic, must-have senior photographer for every teen in your area!


Lynn Powell Roberts

I learned a lot from this course. I watched all day when CL replayed Sal Cincotta's senior course and I wanted a second perspective, so I bought Leslie's course. I'm really glad I purchased Leslie's course because it was a great complement to Sal's course. Leslie covered different things like using a style closet that I especially found useful. She also did a beach shoot with a male and female model, which I found very useful and different from Sal's style. Leslie is so excited about "her girls" that she photographs - it's very engaging. I highly recommend this course.