now we're doing frequency separation so look I want to I'm gonna stand to explain it but it's really important and profound frequency separation is what allows you to perfectly smooth out the skin make the skin tones even get rid of blemishes but somehow still keep all of the skin texture because it's one of the biggest problems that we have is as we're getting rid of blemishes on the face were degrading the skin texture it doesn't look really starts to look plastic you start to have blurs so frequency separation what it lets you do is it lets you take the texture suck it out of the picture and put it on the top layer and then you have the color and the tone on another layer and you can be touched that all you want and smooth everything out and then add the texture back in so it looks perfect and this is how I retouch everything absolutely everything I do like there really isn't an exception when I was a portrait photographer there were times when it was large groups that doesn't requi...
re frequency separation because a large group it isn't going to be really really close up so I'm not going to see that same problem of the skin detail falling apart but for anything that's a close up headshot of an individual or even a mid length three quarter shot it's definitely going to be frequency separation I'm going to take you through the steps of how to do it but as I said up on my blog's there is a download totally free to get the action to do this so you can run the action so in the future you don't have to go through all of these different steps it'll make it easier on you but it is definitely important to understand what you're doing and to actually see it start to finish so that you can retouch that way so I'm going to jump in with that and we're going to start with an image that in the past would perhaps have struck a little bit of fear into my heart okay so somebody with very very heavy blemishes very dark because I knew it would take a great deal of retouching and in fact are not really going to use any of those tools that I just talked about that I would normally spot healing and healing brush and said I'm going to show you how I might do it with frequency separation and frequency separation will end off it will end up doing beauty retouching so I can show you how I might go even further with it and how perfect I would go for the average person I don't want it to be unrealistic on so that will be a balance that you'll be seeing throughout the day and we'll start with blemishes and eventually we're going to show you how to do this with wrinkles so let's get started and I'm going to open this up in for a shop and this is what would have perhaps been a wee bit intimidating for me okay that is that is a lot of texture to deal with and it would look like a very long amount of time to go through and you spot healing or cloning and I know if I clone for sure it would be really really obvious so what I'm going to do is I'm gonna try to suck out some of the texture and put it on the top layer and then I can smooth out all the color and add texture back in and then I can still get rid of texture I don't like later on here are the steps and the numbers and I'm going to be using right now are for sixteen bit files and I told you you all want to work in sixteen that file that gives you more flexibility however I know that sometimes you just didn't or a file that you started to re touch in the past is no longer in sixteen bit you'll only have a debt and you want to go back and fix it and do frequency separation so the numbers are a little bit different but in the actions that I have on my block you can download the action for eight but the process is exactly the same what you want to do is you want to separate out the color and the texture separate from each other you're going to duplicate your background twice the top layer is high which is your texture and I'm going to label it as such that we remember highest texture if anybody has ever done worked with high pass then you probably already get okay kind and texture there they're somehow related detail and we're actually infrequency separation it kind of is a high pass thing going on but we're not gonna touch on that too much and then I want my middle there to be low which is color and tone so for color and tone that's going to be the lightness and darkness of the skin as well as the color so this is how I get rid of darkness down here on her face or blotchy nous is I retouched that all out and smooth it out okay so we've got to go ahead and suck out the texture how do we do that we'll turn off my top layer going to turn off high and I just have low on and this is going to be the color and tone so I need to get rid of the texture in order to do that we blur which is something we're probably all told not to do in skin retouching but this is okay this is the exception to click on that and you're going to go to filter blur goshen blur and I'm going to use my little little square that I get it gives me the preview there so I can see what I'm blurring I'm going to put that on an area usually right here on the cheek it needs to be well lit and I need to be able to see pores okay so what I am looking for I am looking to blur to the point where I can no longer see crisp individual pours because kind of subjective it's kind of a pain so this is what you want this is what's important to you and in my action this is the only place where you make a decision or you have to change something here's what happens ok try to keep this in mind the more that you blur the more texture it's going to suck up into the top layer because you're blurring it more so a lot of that detail not has to go somewhere and it goes into the high the detail there the less that you blur the less texture that's going to be in that top layer and there is a reason why you would want more or less if you have too much texture in that top layer what actually does it starts to suck up some of the color it starts to suck up some of the color and tone of these blemishes so as I go through and I try to do my retouching it's still stuck on that texture layer above and I can't get rid of it but if I don't suck up enough texture I go ahead and do my retouching and it looks plastic and the texture to the skin is gone so this is something that you want teo test each image is going to be a different number but generally it ranges between about point five pixels and math slim I've ever done is four so some somewhere in that range I tend to be more around you know for a head shot more around the one and a half to three range we're going to look and what you want to look for is this so I'm going to put it to zero so you can just see from me what I decide is the right amount it's a trial on everything you'll definitely get better the more you practice all right so I want to blur okay I can still see those pores I can't see him anymore there maybe that's why I picked so we do it again okay so I'm looking at the pores they start getting softer maybe run they're so like maid to is when I was individual crisp pores kind of melt together I can't see them another way that some people do this is they look at to eyelashes close together and the point where the two eyelashes are no longer in no longer distinguishable when they blend in then that's where they blur because it's it's basing it off of how close the shot is so for example looking here I could look at maybe maybe like thies too and their start simpler so I'm a similar place similar I'm going to go mid two two point seven and of course because I'm giving you an action you can run it once and then if you look there's too much texture that you sucked up you do it again and this time you blur less so we're doing that all right I'm going teo now click on mihai lair turn it on and I'm going to go to image apply image and you don't need to know anything remain if you're super nerdy and really want to know there's information out there but you don't really need to know what's going on here you just have to plug in the right numbers there's not really any changes you would ever dio you need your layer to read low because you were selected on the highlighter and you're applying the lower layer to it it has to be low by default it usually says emerged and it won't work so should really low the next thing that you want is to click on invert you want your blending mode to be an your scale to be two and you're off set to be zero if you did purchase this class the screen grab of the settings for both eight bit and sixteen are included along with a step by step process so if you actually went ahead and purchased that you don't have to write this all down it's it's already there and conversely or at the same time if you downloaded the action you don't need to remember it's built into it this is specifically going to work for sixteen bit there's different numbers for eight you know that you did it right or at least are getting close when the image does this it turns grey because that's getting it towards that high pass that text earlier you can actually have some of the settings wrong and it still look like this but it's letting you know when it's gray you're least close this is exactly what it has to read you hit okay and if you look I can zoom in and look at all that texture I can see all the pores khun see her eyelashes and so I have sucked that out onto a separate layer but I can't reach touch like this I need to be able to see so selected on the hi lair you need to change its blend mode and as I said before really briefly alluded to it blend moods change how layers interact with one another and they have different different types the top darkens in its algorithm everything gets darker like enlightens everything and they're just whole segment that has to do with contrast the one the only one that'll work for this is linear light linear lights what you need I don't use linear light for anything else and retouching like I don't know of any other reason to use it but I use it for this and watch this difference the before and after ready nothing that's the whole point you shouldn't see any difference whatsoever okay there should be no I was like waiting for people to be like yes open like just not in your head at may uh okay so uh there just wasn't any different if there is a difference you did wrong because I'm supposed to do is separate the color and tone from the texture if there's a change that I'm changed my image so you don't want to do that well what's great is now I am ready to retouch and you can go ahead and retouch however you are comfortable but you don't have to worry about texture as much as long as you sucked out the right amount and this looks pretty good to me and it's kind of hard to tell and I have a suggestion for this as well but I have most of my pores I can see my poor so that's good and there's a little bit of color is a little bit of color there a tiny bit but not too much if you blurred too much you would see color in this layer and you shouldn't so that balance what you khun dio is you can add an adjustment layer of levels and just increase the contrast and you're not doing that for any other reason than just to see what you actually sucked up and then you can just throw that away but that's one of the way if I can tell quite what I actually grabbed what I didn't it's simply a reference levels and I can turn it off and I can use that later on we have the ability to come in and retired retouched to improve the textures when I do that I add this top levels which I eventually throw away so I can see what I'm dealing with this is much more challenging to see that texture that's actually there when it delete it and I'm going to begin retouching where you start is by retouching on the low lair and I'm going to my main goal is to smooth out even out blotchy nous an undesirable tones undesirable darkness undesirable highlights I can do it here for ease if you wanted to start and I do this sometimes if there's somebody that just has a couple of large blemishes I can get rid of it like usual using spot healing or something like that and the only reason I would do that is at this point if there's a really large blemish it's going to show up in the color and it's going to show up in the texture so if it's easy to get rid of I kind of saved myself a step they don't have to retouch it twice but let's look at this I duplicate the low lair it doesn't make any change but what it does is it lets me go back if I make up make a mistake like duplicating your background and now I'm going to use clone and that is the primary tool that I'm using and I can turn off the highlights you can you can see this without the texture to do this as well and retouch like this so I'm gonna use my clone stamp and in this case and right here I'm going to use lytton because I want a clone stamp on light and because I want to lighten up those blemishes and we'll just do it a little faster you can also use your clone stamp on normal it's just a little bit less targeted both are totally fine turn that texture back on so you can see it so now what I can do we can use a really high capacity because I don't care about the texture because I've got saved so I can click around like this and you want to be zoomed in around one hundred percent when you're doing this you can see and I also let you know one of most common pitfalls and I'm just going to kind of talk while I do this you can see this one of the most common pitfalls are as somebody is going ahead and evening out the skin tones is they mess up the natural highlights and shadows of the faith meaning under here underneath the lip that is a shadow it is because her lips are fuller so in a way that someone might mess up is that they're cloning and they do that as they're trying teo smooth out the skin and I'm actually changing the shape of the face the lift isn't a big deal the big deal is the cheekbones the highlights and shadows in the cheekbones because if I start smoothing things in those highlights from the cheekbone start spreading over here all of a sudden there's really weird face shape and so that's why you got to pay attention to is like that original highlight and shadow pattern on the face so all I'm doing is I'm sampling with clone and I'm filling in those dark areas and you can see that I have not damaged a single texture at any point and so actually this really really fast I do like intensely fast clicking um and I'm just filling in unevenness and blotchy and what I do is I look next to the texture I don't like or the color that I don't like and I try to select an area that's better I just copy and paste and I can fill it in uh I will spend another like minute on this you can see how far I got quickly I would probably on this image if I were doing this for real for a client I probably spend twenty minutes maybe maybe not that long it depends on if I was struggling to get it to look really natural but I'm going to fill this in a little bit and so this area in and I do have to do a little bit of retouching for some of the edges that's going to be a little bit harder for me to handle but let's see where we got in that I don't know what was it four minutes or something so we were able to get to their which if I zoom in I have all of my texture and all I did is about those uneven tones those blemishes so this is this's the retouching I do for everything and it makes it really nice I can also do this for example with somebody with like with stretch marks or five o'clock shadow or can you see how I might use it to light and wrinkles but not eliminate them I won't completely feel in the shadow but just lately and the texture is completely maintained so now it's going to give me a much more realistic retouch so while I do this do we have any questions as I click around and uh kind of improved the skin here in the room I guess following does this does this make sense to you good luck nodding lots of yeses yeah maybe itjust made perfect brilliant sense you do let's see from a nuke from dubai's wondering when we do why do we use apply image instead of the hard past filter while creating the lair there isn't there are ways you can do this but this is the simple list way it'll you could achieve the same result but this is just the easier way it's not really a big reason and that's I think something teo just be it a rate as we're going throughout this day is that there are always other ways to do everything in photo shop so we're going to make sure teo if you guys have questions about you know how do you do something how do you solve a problem that test those questions as opposed to the why're you doing this instead of this because because that's what she's doing for the most part okay let's talk about plug ins retouching plug ins and how I would use them and I still will use a retouching plugin at times but I don't use it and let it take control of my picture and that's where most people most people fail at retouching is because they apply the plug in and let it apply to the whole photograph and said I used in conjunction with this technique what I might do is all right so you saw this is where I got so far okay and I have all the skin texture and it looks great I would also feel in under her eyes so now remember how we're struggling a little bit before because it was capturing that texture that I didn't want well now it's not it's not even a consideration I just laying up under the eyes and the eyes still have the correct texture because under eye texture is not the same as cheek texture so you don't really want to copy and paste texture you just want to lighten it up a little bit so this is looking pretty good it's looking much better alright retouching plug ins the one I'm going to use is image gnomic portraiture just because that's what I'm most comfortable with and I've been using it for a while but whatever retouching plucking you are familiar with we're basically doing the skin smoothing part whatever element in that plugin does the skin smoothing it's a more intelligent way of blurring because what blurring does if you're go ahead I'm like oh well I want to wear some blotchy nus I'm just going to blur it gives you hasty edges and it just softens everything where as what retouching plugin does it's more intelligent and it looks for similar skin tones and it blends them is blending instead of blurring and that's why I use it at this step looking at parts of her cheek meetings I filled in some of those blemishes but maybe it's just still a little bit uneven I can go ahead and ask my retouching plug in to step up and save me time in this case I could go to filter image gnomic portraiture and I'm going to zoom in and how this book works and you don't have to use it with frequency separation you actually can get decent images without it how it works is on the top left hand corner you have your details smoothing I said it's the smoothing part okay fine medium and large detail fine is going to be your skin pores then it's going to be skin texture than it's going to be like watching this of skin the beneath that you have a skin tone mascot when I turn it on I can select specific areas of the skin and right now I have a lot of a lot of blurring going on and of course this layer we had already blurred it but if I take a look see my before after here okay so this is my after it's starting to smooth it out a little bit more if I turn off that mask kind of just evened out a lot of that tone and I will not really be concerned about fine anymore his fine is for skin detail and so I can pump it up and blow the crap out of those findings because it's in a texture later I don't care anymore so it's evening out okay so see how everything's kind of smoothing out a little bit that's good I still don't wanna have any softness on down at the bottom you could make things softer or sharper the reason I don't want to have softness on is that's what gives you that hayes you see that hayes around edges which so then the skin texture starts to blur over sorry the skin tone starts to blur over where they're supposed to be a crisp shadow like you can see it gets a little bit hazier so I make sure that's turned off so this looks like a a pretty good place to start so I went ahead okay all right now if you look can you see how it how strong that it softened it starts to bleed over and soften some of the tones that I wanted like crisp eyelashes and like even around the shadows of her knows I don't want that to be blurred because now it looks blurred it doesn't look real it soft this is into an awesome question that we had from one of the students in the audience in the break which was can you add masks to anything and answers yes and this is where I would use it before we're using we were using masks for adjustment layers changing levels or changing black and white and that painting selectively on and off so it's non destructive and it gives you more control I could go ahead and add a mask to this layer and then selectively paint in what I wanted to be a little bit more blended using portraiture what you want to do is you want once I blurt it like I just did or smooth it out using portraiture you want to hold the altar option key this is what I do and I click on the rectangle with a circle in it and this is what'll adam asked to that layer the reason I'm holding holding the altar option key is because it gives me a black mask whatever is black the words next to it is hidden so I have just hidden my portrait earlier and I can name this so you guys know about their portraiture and now wherever I paint white will bring that back interviewing I'll be able to reveal that smoothness I can come over here I can grab a bite brush and let's see maybe I want to smooth out just a little bit over here maybe this is a little bit blotchy so I can kind of uh click on the mask not the photo so it kind of paint sits here before and after seo it's evening it just a little bit yeah so my last day at the moment is that one hundred percent but you you apply it to the amount that you want I would probably um work out like fifty or sixty percent and then later if I need tio I don't need to go really subtle unless I really overdid it let's dio maybe sixty percent let's see what else is blotchy down here with a little bit uneven and a little bit there so I'm looking for places that could use just a little bit of smoothing we talked about the clone stamp before and how you can change the blend modes and we used it to fill in the blemishes but here on the top is how we could also use it to darken down ah highlight uh this is a point where if I if I get everything kind of smooth the way I want it I want a few times and white merge now and whatever you're comfortable with but at this point I could say all right that highlights a little bright take my clone stamp on darken my past it doesn't matter because it's not I'm not worried about layering texture and I could just darken down that highlight a little bit and it keeps all of that skin texture so let's assume back and take a look at what we have so far something like that all right as you continue to retouch it is very easy to go overboard and make it a little bit too perfect for her I would still definitely get rid of some of that unevenness I know it would go a little bit further but I recommend doing frequency separation do it once get rid of the major problems and step away for a minute and then come back and take a look and see if it looks ridiculous because we are perfectionists will sit there and there's a little bit of color that shouldn't be there when we get rid of that and all of a sudden the skin is way too perfect for a real person on beauty doesn't matter and beauty I make their skin perfect we know that that's the goal looking at her that looks great but let's talk about a problem that you sometimes run into sometimes and this one this picture doesn't have that problem too much sometimes you run into a problem where maybe there was a little bit of narrow depth of field on the photo and so you did this whole process and you smoothed out but there wasn't enough texture saved and like maybe the bomb in the face with a little bit out of focus and so it clearly looks retouched or maybe the picture just doesn't look quite sharp you didn't maybe it wasn't a sharp photo what I love about doing frequency separation is actually gives me the ability to do sharpening at this point it's not actually sharpening its for me it's intensifying texture if I duplicate the top lair if I duplicate hi hunter happens and duplicate it you see that what you would do the skin tone or the skin texture intensifies it times to I mean it multiplies the texture right that's definitely too much for me but I have a lair masks I can hold my alter option key click on that layer mask the rectangle with the circle on it and the layers pallet on the bottom right I click on that now I can grab a white brush and this is where I would grab a lower opacity and just start painting in texture were like let's sharpen the eyes a little bit okay looks good maybe just down here like right right here I think maybe it was a little bit too smooth that can't see the texture enough probably use a low brush and just paint a little bit skin texture back in and I could do something like that this is a step where if I've retouched to much or it just looks too blurred I'll add more texture back in or I'll use it to pop the detail in the eyes or I'll do it just to have a little bit more sharp a little bit sharper photo so yeah I noticed that the small hairs we weren't using the same like changing the color on that is there something different you would do with that in the blemish in the like just like right under her eyebrow or something would you use this liking those um all right here is why I'm right just saying a little bit different if I go ahead and clone under the eyes or above the eyes in this case so like maybe get rid of these hairs right it will definitely make them look lighter and you can see it on the side of her face you see the hairs there if I clone a clone area mmmmmmmmm mmmmmmmmm what's my capacity oh there we go let's go back to normal brush and let's clone of my own oh current blow hundred current so I can start to fill it in a bit but because it's so fine it's also a texture and the texture will still be there which means that have to try to retouch it out here and the texture layer which is why maybe I would just do it later on or at the beginning of the process so that's not done twice and they're going to be textures that that were picked up by the texture layer that you don't like maybe there are going to be certain things that sucked up that you don't like so here's when I would retouch them out I could hide that one all right so what I could do is add back in that fake point list levels because it just lets me see contrast so I'm going to go ahead at this point and try to retouch out texture I don't like if there's any still bothering me that I can see add that levels back in start seeing what's going on in that texture layer and now I can go ahead and say okay well that over here this is clearly a blemish that it sucked up that I don't like you could use the clone sam to cover it up if you spot healing you can use whatever tools you want um let's see oh dear and I can go around in anything that's objectionable texture I can remove here and this is where if you there's still hair visible you could do it here as well anything that it picked up and that it's keeping that you don't want it to keep clone stamp is actually going to be a really good option here but for time's sake you khun still do spot healing like I'm using so I can get rid of five let's see that hair up here using spot hailing I have a very extreme example of blemishes but if you want to do a great job this is what you would use to do it there you don't need to spend that much time on it a few other things I would go ahead and I would spend more time down around the edges I haven't done that because I know that would take me a little bit more time but I could go ahead and spot hell these out on a little air and start doing a little bit of cloning around there to get rid of them all right so I would love to take questions before I continue on absolutely we do have a lot of questions a couple of will ask including david meyer if you didn't have the portraiture plugin how would you even out the tones using only photo shop there are two ways to do it one way is yet you can you can blur maybe trying a surface blur to kind of even things out but what I usually do really is just the cloning because I'm selecting skin tones next to it that I like and I'm blending them together by cloning over and over and over again I don't care about texture so I'm blending them together a method that I don't use but I know several there people do is they use the mixer brush and the mixer brush I think it's new to see a six it's this one of the newer ones the mixer brush acts like a paintbrush and what you do is let's say you have a wet canvas and so I could come over and with my brush pick up a color skin tone that I like and I basically dip it in that color pain and then I paint it over top of a blemish that I don't like there's a lot of different controls up here that you can control the wetness of the brush so how smooth or how much it's going to spread also load is how much it picks up when you're actually selecting that particular color how much it holds on to previous colors how much it mixes so if you are comfortable with painting it's a lot of the same concept it takes practice there's a bunch of tutorials online about using the mixer brush I'd follow a couple of those first to get get the feel of how it works and a lot of re touches like this because if you have a tablet it's very sensitive to actually this brush pressure into you can paint and draws if you were working with liquid so that is another way that you could select and start blending and smoothing things out well that actually brings up a question that a few people are asking earlier as well is tablet versus mouse versus trackpad what do you recommend is there anything that you recommend not using every every professional re toucher uses some kind of tablet all of them let's even say that it wasn't for precision it's so that you don't get carpal tunnel and it's like you know but it is also for precision and for speed away comer welcome and if people say differently they have the standards of tablets you can get inexpensive ones that'll do the job there's things even one that's pretty decent under one hundred the nicer ones get more expensive and that you go up to the antique level where you actually have a touch screen monitor so you are actually doing this on a monitor so if you're already comfortable with painting you're literally doing that right on the photograph itself but through a screen so it depends on what you're most comfortable with at least a mouse but tablets what every professionally if that's what you use use a welcome yet because jeff bought it for me okay yeah it was nice all right look when anything else over there I think we're good all right great I'm gonna delete this real quick after it well no I'm going to group and hide it real quick all right because I want to show you something else I'm just gonna hide this ours we're gonna hide that momentarily the the next thing that I did I want to show you is if you wanted to just use portraiture what what does it look like in case that something that you were curious about to go to filter image gnomic portraiture I can zoom in and select a skin tone that I like or that I dislike and I want to blend and then I can change all of these blending options to try to smooth it out it works great for blotchy skin it does not work that well for individual blemishes the girl that we had originally with that rose asia it would work pretty well with her because what you can do is select that readiness and then just smooth it out a little bit so it'll soften that you can actually make a few other changes to the warmth and the tent of it's you can make few selective color changes there but you can see it's smooth it's moves out this really well the in betweens but it leaves the blotches pretty much as is if you want to use the action that I provided here's how it works in here what will look like you are going to download the action and then when you go to windows you've got to turn on the actions palette and it will bring up this actually paella and I have a whole bunch in here let me hide these from you okay whole bunch in there so bring up the action pal it like this you gonna click on the fly out menu on the far right over here and you're going to load actions it's going to give you a single file which I have it's called retouching you well too many windows and this is what it looks like this is what the file looks like and you're going to load it there in photo shop so you're going to right click load actions and find that and then it'll bring it up and it's called retouching and I have all these different things but for example frequency separation sixteen bit when I hit play it's our duty it already duplicated the layers and now is asking me how much do you want to blur your lola and then it gets it all set ready to go versus all those steps I had to do before so it's a much easier way to do that and the eight bit is here as well
Fashion photographer Lindsay Adler has risen to the top of her industry as both a photographer, educator, and Canon Explorer of Light. Based in New York City, her fashion editorials have appeared in numerous fashion and photography publications including Marie Claire, Elle, InStyle, Noise, Essence, Zink Magazine, Rangefinder, Professional Photographer and dozens more. As a photographic educator, she is one of the most sought after speakers internationally, teaching on the industry's largest platforms and most prestigious events.
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!!
Lindsay is probably my favourite instructor (and that is saying a lot, as there are many incredible instructors). She is so clear in her teaching and she also seems like such a nice and humble person despite her incredible success. This course is one of the best courses I have ever seen. Thank you Lindsay and Creative Live!
Great course. Lindsay Adler is one of the best instructors for any creative live classes that I have seen. Simple and easy to understand, clear workflow, very friendly and non condescending like some other instructors.
Could you put a link (maybe I just didn't see it) to where to download the actions used in this tutorial?