Camera Settings: Files


Skin 101: Lighting, Retouching and Understanding Skin


Lesson Info

Camera Settings: Files

I didn't want to add on something for the white balance segment that I wanted to mention totally forgot check your cameras manual and I'm sure if you've watched creative live before they always say that and there's a reason because it's true every different camera has different capabilities depending on what cameron you have you can actually set some custom white balance pre sets that you can then go in and select on the fly so for example if you know that there are certain places that you're always shooting you can create a white mounds preset and keep it right there so for example like the d eight hundred some of the like higher and pro sumer night cons had this capability so check your manual that might be great maybe there's certain places that you're always shooting you don't even need to get new custom white balances you just set them there and access them when you need them so definitely check that one out okay so the segment that we're diving into now is the type of stuff that ...

generally makes my head explode a little bit because it's camera and file settings and these were the well I'm not going to speak for everybody but generally we don't become photographers for this particular reason like we don't really want to dive in depth into the details of every different color space and like understand the nuances of you know that's not really what we do this however we have to know what if you want good skin and this is a place where you can very quickly get frustrated and this is actually where I've had problems is I'll have something set wrong somewhere in my work flow for camera and file setting and the color doesn't look right and this is going to be even beyond color management we're gonna talk about that later but it's really kind of all in the same picture what you need to do to get your system set up to help you correctly manage skin tones and color throughout your entire workflow all right so let's get started with this crap I can't take it slow and no stress maybe so obviously the best skin is achieved when the tone is right and the color is right so lots of different questions and this is a preliminary slide we are going to keep diving in deeper and deeper and deeper into this but first and foremost most if you want the best skin quality you need to be shooting raw and I'll tell you about that in a little bit if you also want the best tones and color to your skin you need to be working with your file in sixteen bit and you need to be working with one of the larger color spaces either adobe rgb nineteen ninety eight or pro photo we're going to talk about what that means and why you was a photographer might choose one over the other but if you just didn't want to watch the rest of this just know that you need to shoot raw need to be working in sixteen bit and a larger color space you never want to be working with s rgb and I'm going to show you why but this isn't my interest line so let's jump in even more okay so here's why you do want to be shooting raw or one of the reasons first of all it's just more information when it comes down to skin the more information the better because a lot of our cameras have certain limitations in how already is perceiving skin and so we want to give ourselves much information to work with first of all has better total range when working with raw so for example this even comes down to photographing somebody with really oily skin you're photographing a j peg and that highlight goes over exposed you can't get it back but for shooting with raw you can recover that highlight and then work with it in post processing it also comes down to how skin is represented if you ever seen and if you guys ever seen this but you look in an area of this kind of sharper shadow grady in where the colors are all messed up there like green or a little bit yellow and actually see kind of a weird color patterns that has to do with color and tonal restrictions are limitations of that file if you're shooting in j peg that is compounded a hundred times you just simply don't have enough information to work with it gives you a lot of flexibility and really a huge one a huge benefit of shooting raw is you have more leeway to fix incorrect setting if you're white balance was wrong really hard to fix if you shot j peg if you're under or over exposed when you go to correct that with the j peg you're picks will start to fall apart and it's very very visible in the skin I'd read a little bit about the psychology of skin and how we see skin our eyes are very attuned to the red and yellow channels like this is just how we're built and there's like all these things I read about how maybe it was when we were hunter gatherers trying to a girl like what ae I don't know okay but today what it means is if skin tones you're wrong we notice and we can see blotchy nous or unevenness and so if you are working with a j peg file and it gets messed up I mean you're our eyes can call it out almost instantly you might not know exactly what it is but you know that there's something wrong another benefit of working with roth is built into that file this much total information as possible and as much color information as possible just built in with that file so you're starting off with his much information as you possibly can how you want to think of it is you start with you want to start with his much information as you can and you narrow down to wherever you're going to be out putting but you try to still keep it is biggest possible for that output so we're gonna keep diving into this keep jumping all right so here's an example it it's a really basic example of how skin tones are effected when shooting rob versus j peg so in the picture on the left this is my friend eric took this picture of me hey shot raw plus j peg with his d eight hundred and the white balance was auto white balance and it was all messed up and it was way under exposed so when we go ahead and try to fix this I used all the abilities I had to try to get the color right and I could actually color correct the raw pretty easily and I could liken it up I couldn't no matter where I pushed in pole they couldn't quite get it right with the j peg and you can see all of that degraded color and all that pixel ization in the shadows there's blotchy nous of greens and reds and it's falling apart because I couldn't dive into the colors or dive into the shadows when I was trying to fix it so if you're somebody who's like oh I'm shooting events I don't you know I don't need rocks they don't need all that information you definitely still d'oh it's definitely going to save you and now a days working with light room or aperture you don't even have to think twice you see they're all the same way you do the j peg you just have so much more information to work with so without a question if you're not shooting wrong and you're photographing people you must buy goes back with the like do something about your white balance shooting rock there's not even a question there's no instance and photographing people where I'd say get go ahead you know shoot j peg it doesn't matter if your skin tones matter and this is a skin class you have to shoot raw okay all right big tough okay guys heard a bit sixteen bit all right well I'm gonna show you kind of what that looks like without getting too technical into it but it's what it sounds like sixteen bit is going to have a lot more information to work with them a bit but its color and its tones there's a lot more information to work with there and this comes down to a hubble important things if you're using a lower bit image you're shooting like maybe your image is a bit and you're working in photo shop as you start to make changes to exposure or to color the image more quickly falls apart the color more quickly becomes an accurate you start to get banding in the history grams if you guys have ever seen that where you're history ram has lines because it doesn't have enough information to fill it in when you have sixteen bit maybe you can't print sixteen bit or display it but it's giving you a lot more information to pull and move things around and make adjustments so is giving yourself more flexibility and I have a good analogy to explain this a little bit later on so basically a bit if you shoot j peg this is another downside ajay peg is a bit you don't like shooting out of your camera you don't have a choice it's going to be an eight bit j peg and so you're limiting the color information you have and you're limiting your ability to work with the file what I recommend is when you're working in photo shop and we're going to go back and talk about light ornament aperture when you're working in photo shop you want to be working with sixteen bit tiffs or ps d's that's giving yourself a cz much information as possible to be working within photoshopped okay so this is what it looks like sixteen bit versus a bit if I am showing an image in black and white and I'm shooting an eight bit I only have two hundred and fifty six different tones of gray to make up that image that's actually extremely minimal especially if you have grady ints from highlight to shadow that air really smooth you will start seeing jumps because you literally don't have enough shades to work with to show that whole grady in and so you start having steps it starts jumping up there that also applies the same with color you need when you have all this color you actually need all of these different shades of gray to give you all of the different hues of the colors when you're working with eight bit and you're trying to do maybe that grady int in a blue sky that goes from dark blue light blue in a bit there's not enough tonal information there's not enough range from white to black or light to dark to give you smooth throughout the blues and it starts jumping and banding so really what you just need to know is there's just not enough information either in the color or in the different ranges of radiance from light to dark just not enough there to work with uh so let me show you what it looks like all right so I shot this image on the left hand side and it was very very underexposed I didn't have my camera settings right for whatever reason and I needed to save it in post I will tell you I love this photo I'm very proud of it I would not have been able to save this if I shot it as a j peg wouldn't have even been possible so what I did this is the original raw file I had to brighten it up and I also had to increase the contrast are taking a look at here if I open this file up from raw as an eight bit and started messing around with the exposure this is what my history ram looked like if I opened up and worked with an eight bit uh grayscale file all of these little lines and the holes in between them means that there isn't enough information there and so it gases and so this is what starts giving you the banding and it starts to look not smooth doesn't give you that more like tru organic style and if you're shooting something like that it's going to take you away from having that like film look for sure because you will see the differences in the tones but I took the exact same file and I opened it up and I didn't I didn't change anything in wrong all I do is open up that ugly picture as its underexposed when I did the same thing but I opened it up now it's sixteen bit and I like ended up and I increase the contrast I have a lot more information to work with there and this is not even dealing with color so imagine what happens when you're trying to make color changes in a file and you have all these holes you won't have smooth tonal range or smooth color in your skin and you're not going to have accurate color so this is one of the reasons why you want to be working with his much as possible yeah to even if you shoot in role are you able to open it up a bit because I'm trying to figure out because I don't think I've ever open okay so you can open up so I guess you're doing that by mistake if you're doing that yes so okay so I'm going to I'm going to show you the diagrams later on where you can open up a raw file from you can open it up in adobe camera raw which is if you open that off I'll you double click and opens up in photo shop you get that dialogue that's called a cr if you hear me say that's a cr adobe camera when you go to open it up at the bottom you get to choose what color space you're in and what bit depth you're working in and the same thing when you open up a file from light room into photoshopped the exact same thing you have to make some choices so I'm going to get to this point because I think it's important when you were working in light room and when you're working in africa or adobe camera you're working with raw and and you're working with the raw file at that point you were working with everything your camera captured at that point you are working in sixteen bit it's not as long as you're working with that raw file you are working with sixteen but you are working with actually pro photo color space you're working with a huge color space at that point it's not until you have to open it up in photo shop or exported from light room or turning into a a tip for a j peg that you have to make those decisions about your bit depth and your color space so right away you're this white light room so great and why dobie cameras so great you're working with a ton of information right off the back it's not until you make decisions of what that file is going to be that you have to decide what's a bit definitely the color space so it's pretty cool you already starting off working with a ton of information so at this point yes you could like a lot of people don't realize that they have in their exports settings or they're open and photoshopped from light room that automatically opens up in a bit and then if you will have to do any more work and photoshopped you start to run into these problems so you do want to be working with sixteen bit you have a lot bigger file sizes to work with but it's it's just better as a moving things around I have more information to fill in the gaps all right so take a look at grady ints of color when it comes to eight bit and sixteen bit so we saw in that first slide over here I don't have as many colors and look at this purple right here okay this this in between purple bluish and look it over here how much more colors how many more tones and hughes you have to work with than over here you have a lot more information where this becomes really important are two places blues talk about later but also reds and yellows which is our skin tone so I can show you an example and for everyone watching in the audience and out on the internet you might not be able to see it if you are watching a low resolution feed but it is drastic in person and I promise I did not alter this for sake of teaching this is what happened so I made this image on I love it and it deserves to be huge because it's all monochromatic this beautiful dark skin woman and it's all kind of the same tone and it's beautiful but because it's highlights and shadows all pretty much of the same color I need a lot of different variations of that color all these so it'll grady ins from highlights to shadows highlights the shadows okay all I did for this photo turn into eight bit from sixteen so this is the sixteen but color on the right that's eight bit color and the left I'm going to zoom in for example to her clavicle and what you'll see happen is this is a bit I see bands of yellow and green and magenta and all the strange banding because there wasn't enough color information in the eight bit there wasn't enough hughes in that rainbow in order to be in order to correctly represent her skin tone but in sixteen bit that wasn't a problem so it is that all I did a switch it the bit death and it makes that drastic of a difference you're going to see this difference most in settled radiance of color and in areas where the grading of shadow because you need in kind of a later shadowed a darker shadow you need a lot of the same color tone to represent that grady into correctly so another reason why you definitely want to be working in sixteen bit over a bit okay so let me see if there's any questions on that we are going to jump in a little bit more about ron some camera settings and color space so yes yeah so if this is all the good stuff about the sixteen bid then is there any use for that tape it okay so the use for a pit the question was why why would you use it but then you don't want to use a pit when editing or working with the file because you mean need more information however many places force will printing images or showing them online they have to be a bit you have no choice so for example when I posted that image online all these people were telling me about all the banding like I swear its not there its facebook because it's the same thing so it's not that there's no use for it there's no use if you're going for like the high quality printing and you want is much color information as possible but many labs want most labs want in a bit file and so you've got to actually find a way when you convert that to try to minimize that problem particularly in this example there's not that much you can dio at that point I could maybe de saturate a little bit but what's more important is if I had to make adjustments and exposure that's when that that would show up instantly in a bit file whereas in a sixteen but file that breaking apart of color would happen much with much more editing it wouldn't be much of a problem so I don't ever work in a pet ever until I have to export a file just a little bit of a warning for the sixteen that's even bit me open up in u c e r I've know it took me three tries actually noticed that but every time that would update it would revert back to the bit automatically oh so after like every time I would update and then I'll start working on stuff I would have to go back in and change it so it's just a little bit of warning that when you have to go back in and check it great to make sure that it's on sixteen yeah so that's perfect I'm going to show you guys where you have to watch for these settings so what he's saying is every time you update where I'm going to show you to check the settings check them because otherwise it's going to throw you back to eat bit well I didn't know that maybe I just don't update enough which is probably a problem can I just ask one clarification question for people in chat from bliss photography and black sheep chic just clarifying that sixteen versus a bit our settings in post production like light rumor photoshopped or are we adjusting this in camera or both can we don't touch on that I'm going to say that we're all shooting raw and therefore it's a post production thing we're all going to be shooting wrong and you make a decision when you open up in photo shop when you export to make it sixteen and then one final question from a nuke dubai I know he's a regular here on live is there any way to convert a bit to sixteen okay so when you convert eight bits of sixteen bit it's forcing that conversion it's giving you is making up information it's kind of like taking a small file and then jumping into a gigantic one s so it's going to get the information so it is not recommended you want to start with the bit and then er the sixteen bit moved down to say if you have tio

Class Description

Capturing beautiful skin tones is essential to the success of any portrait, yet skin is notoriously difficult to photograph and retouch. Skin comes in all colors, tones, and textures — each requiring different treatment.

Learn how to handle your subject's skin and add polish to all of your portraits. In this course, Lindsay Adler will take you through the essentials of understanding, lighting, photographing and retouching skin in all its variations.

Lay a strong foundation for a great shoot by learning easy make-up tips. Get an in-depth look at how light modifiers, reflectors, and direction of light impact the appearance of skin for both natural light and studio lighting. Learn advanced color calibration and color correction. Master setting up your camera to capture accurate color and when to modifying in post-production to get ideal skin representation.

Lindsay will teach you how to work with a variety of skin textures and tones – whether the skin is very pale, extremely dark, very oily, has extreme blemishes and much more. You’ll learn everything from how to photograph each type of skin to how to retouch these varieties in skin.

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 14.2


Aliah Husain

Lindsay is an INCREDIBLE photographer and teacher, and also seems like a wonderful person! This class is great for beginners and more advanced photographers, as well. She goes into tons of detail on all the technical stuff like lighting and editing, and it is fascinating to see her interact with and shoot her models, work with her equipment, and photoshop like a pro. Huge amounts of information for what you pay for. If you are looking to improve your skills in photographing and retouching people, purchase this class!!

user 0fde94

Great class! Very informative. I really like the way that Lindsay presents the information. Its all very easy to follow and understand. Love all of the bonus materials. There is one thing that I'm a bit disappointed with, Lindsay mentions that she will supply actions with course, however there were none provided. Would have been nice to get those. Overall an excellent course.

Lera Broz

Absolutely incredible course! I am so happy I purchased it. Lindsey is a well of knowledge, but is also a very methodical teacher which makes it easy to follow along and make sense out of all the information. This is a must-have for anyone working with skin, whether you shoot outdoors or in studio. I would definitely recommend it and will be looking at other classes by Lindsey. Thank you Lindsey and Creative Live!!! P.S. for all those wondering about the actions, they are available on Lindsey's blog for download here