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Shoot: Contouring

Lesson 11 from: Skin 101: Lighting, Retouching and Understanding Skin

Lindsay Adler

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Lesson Info

11. Shoot: Contouring

Next Lesson: Retouching

Lesson Info

Shoot: Contouring

so let's talk about country this is a photograph that I took and on day three I am going to talk about contouring because I do a lot of contouring in photo shop and I do exactly what she is going to do to the faith in post so here's the thing contouring and I'm going to get her I'm going to say it my way and I want to see what she says for me when I'm doing contouring in photo shop I am adding dimension to the face so I'm making the cheekbones look higher but putting shadows under the bottom of the cheekbones here but shadows underneath the cheekbones highlights on the top so the shadows and the highlights make him pop out a little bit more you had a little bit of highlight on the nose and on the forehead you darkened down around here also will sometimes darken around the jaw line because it makes the jaw look a little bit more defined couple other things that I'll do that I'll be able to show you is I sometimes for highlights right here a little bit of shadow right under the lips that...

makes him look fuller because it's a little bit darker so basically what I'm doing in photo shop is enlightening and darkening areas of the face to make thie face would have more dimension and more shape now the reason that it's extremely helpful as well from when I'm working with a makeup artist is she will say to me what type of lighting are you doing if I'm doing very glowy flats light I need a lot more contract because I don't have my light to shape the face anymore if it's going to be totally totally flat the face is going to look flat it's not gonna have that pop so we go heavier on the contouring to give dimension to the face so if you are working with the makeup artist contouring is the best part and helps you out specifically if you're going with much more of a flat light look trying give you that professional pop so what is your take on what contouring makeup wise precisely hit it on the nose it's going to add into the skin you're going to be able to bring out the areas in somebody's face that are the most flattering and helped to disguise areas that could use a little disguising so such as you know under the jawline like she said that's a great area a lot of women even women who are very thin feel like they have a double chin so this is going to help teo shadow that area bringing out the cheek bones making the under eyes really bright all of those things adding more dimension I like to contour in orderto bring all the attention pretty much right here I call this area this is the triangle of light I never want to add any darkness into that area that's what I want to stand out the most and I have a tano contouring on my face right now a lot so maybe tomorrow I'll do before after imposed on instagram so you can see now you have to hold me to it it's lindsay adler underscore photo too just so you can give an idea of how the contrary makes a really really big difference especially since I'm under these bright lights and I'm being filmed so I would I would really disappear which is why it's funny the other day someone said to me I posted a picture of myself on on instagram it seems like all my god I've never seen you with red lips I only wear red lips when I'm on screen when I'm live because it pop so I don't just recede into the background so it's a little bit different in that way what else would I like to say about this you can use this guy for yourself and I actually have this available as a download if you purchase the class you could kind of get an idea of where you might want to contour whether it's for makeup or whether it's in post anything else about contouring I guess the one thing that idealized face shape is an oval it's a thin noble so when you're contouring typically you want to look at the face and go okay if that square where am I going to add shadows and highlights to create a little bit more of an oval face I remembered something of a stand in and I think that you do this and make up a swell if somebody has for example like a bump in their nose in photo shop I'll actually dark and down around and then make the highlight look straight so you don't see the bump you do the same thing with my idea yeah so it sze old kind of the same thing but getting it done in camera gives you a lot better call it's much more realistic and when you have shadows it eats the light more so it is actually adding to mention to the face versus just doing it in post so we're going to take some questions in a minute I'm going to get set up would you take a seat here I'm going to light her really flatly kind of more ethereal like and take a quick shot and then she's just going to show you what contouring would look like so you want to make this request to your makeup artist for sure and as she's doing this we're both happy to take questions you can ask her questions makeup wise me whatever you'd like and uh yeah I think we'll get started with that so let me grab my camera any questions on the studio audience go and raise your hands a star is like a ce faras china found out or if makeup artist is I think the way they asked this question but I mean you're gonna have different types of skin and I don't know how would you convey that to make a party say hey you know this is what I'm looking for but they're not quite knowing exactly or I'm not explaining it well enough I mean there's some type of not knowing what kind of skinny client write write what the asked what to convey to the make up artist to say hey this is what I'm looking for because I know nothing about makeup place I wanna be able to talk to them and make up terms yeah um I think there's some really good basic terms to use such as do we match um you know those air good that's good to know do you like a mask and do like a duty skin do you want contouring um how much coverage do you want do you want the foundation really natural or are we going to go for something a little bit fuller today uh I think that's kind of some basic information and then getting down and obviously talking about color and what you're looking for they're so typically using that in you talk about that and really artistic form you know like you know I want to use very contrast ing colors and bright and vibrant and things of that sort is that answering your question it was like because you would want to make sure that I'm asking the right thing in case there's like a fair skinned person versus a black person versus you know brown person so I'm not trying to put you know fair skinned makeup on a dark person to make him you know t o I could tell you what I do have kind of two things on this first of all of course always provide mood boards kind of what I'm looking for but I am I all I just flat out ask do you have a kid and are you comfortable with doing makeup on dark skin because I have had makeup artists that for some reason don't know how to do makeup on dark skin on dh so or don't have quite quite the right kit so I always communicate and try to bring try to provide a photograph of the subject right away because if they didn't bring the correct foundations they literally can't do the makeup in fact so I photographed a lot of extremely dark skin subjects I love very very dark skin to photograph some makeup artists don't have colors that go that dark seriously because it's not in their normal kid so I show them who the subject is I let them know this is a very dark skin tone so they can go out you know prepare for the shoot so I just blatantly tell them like this is dark skinned person you need to be prepared with what you need to do their make up um oh and I'm going to have them I don't have it now but I'll drop this in tomorrow or maybe later a link to its a makeup artist wrote it for how to commute healthy photographers should communicate with makeup artists um so it's like I think it's like a seven dollars a book or something like that that might be really really useful so I will it'll be out there e think maybe tomorrow did you have a um would you offer make up for a guy like you had a senior guy would kind of be like a case by kings like depending on how their face or would it the on ly so the only thing I ever did for high school seniors was some of that essentials kit so it was blotting papers and things like that and I did have like little you know I would say going to cover anything up really casual but most the time I skipped it when I do my fashion and portrait shoots yeah I always still always have makeup but I would say maybe for the average person they're less comfortable is a guy I do have a question about like the glossy or the oily skin if I don't have a make up artist president is there a way to get rid of that imposed because I looked at different ways and nothing seems to work yes definitely I will show you the blotting papers if you can have those it makes a huge difference it's literally a piece of paper and you just pat it it soaks up the shine if you could do that it'll help you a lot but I know like the situation where you go out in the sun they got sweaty you didn't want to block them every ten seconds because you don't want them to feel super awkward that they're super sweaty and then now you have these super blown out highlights also we're gonna talk about oily skin tomorrow as well sometimes direction of light makes a difference but yeah I have a couple things that I do in post and shooting in raw helps to bring that down and that's also something I liked about shooting a phase has a huge dynamic range I can pull those highlights way down but we'll take a look at with thirty five millimetre and I'm gonna have to take more questions I'm going to shoot really flat so if you can see here what I did is I photographed flat light soft box above white reflector underneath so she's I mean she's got a nice shape face anyway but I pre footing after pretty flat okay I want teo to pictures I mean do one like this yes please thank you and then can you if you don't turn your head perfect so would you like to begin with contouring and feel free to let them know what you're doing and then we can still field questions as she's doing that we've got plenty of time okay so I always start with a really really light color a white for her I might do a mixture of these two light colors I like to do a highlight first so first I'm going to assess her face shape and see what we're going to dio where I'm going to add highlights are basically what you saw on the image there uh so I'm just gonna start and if you guys have specific questions please let me know you actually e I don't know what to make of it all but I used makeup contouring guides from my retouching all the time so you're adding highlight to the centre of the forehead so that in a nose line correct and then down the center of the nose thank you and what kind of what kind of foundation are you using its makeup forever this is a pro palette see do you have to get it in store it's not available on line but they can ship it and if if there's not a store or they don't but where else what other brands have used I love derma blend and like there's great ben nike ryland graft toby in is another great one that I love a good cream typically is my preference to use cream over project I never I don't know anything about make up some actually sincerely ask anything yeah you know regular donation or airbrushed I'm personally not a fan of yours makeup that it's a personal preference I've tried it before and I feel like I have more control with a traditional hand apply foundation but very good makeup artist friend who loved the airbrush loves it and use up all the time and her clients love it so I really feel like that's a personal preference so you just a little bit of highlight on her cheeks they're starting on the cheeks yeah we didn't under the area chin now we're going to get the cheek area and underneath the eye so even if you guys don't plan on doing makeup keep this in mind free retouching basically oh I had an interesting thing that I wanted to mention so really really strange that I was like well earlier she put on a primer on me that she squeezed in her hand and it was green she put green on my face okay would you explain what yes because you did have some redness in your skin this morning and the green is actually going to if we use our based on color theory right yep the green is gonna counteract the readiness so using that first before foundation I can use less foundation because I won't need it for as much color correcting so well so make it the foundation less cakey and said it was just a base to fix the color area correct so for someone that has a lot of readiness to the skin may be recommending they look up green I don't know I thought that was pretty cool but she literally squeezed it's bright green eyes like it was like it's like it's like a green foundation timer yeah like way so I'm a giant ho donor joking are you closed today yes I know what a lot of you know against light skinned black people they have I mean they have a seriously red tone in this game someone do you it's the same thing for that if you're trying to take some of the raid out of this I would not actually so more spread in general so all of a sudden change in actual color their skin would be my thing so you just go have your own foundation in that case I would yep yeah it's funny even so even if I'm photographing darker skin people with the color checker sometimes look at their skin like it's so read well it actually wass but because we were talking in person and you know I'm not noticing it but it photographs read to the camera so sometimes I'm making tweaks imposed to the red channel and just kind of play out a little bit of saturation or tweaking the reds more you know by adding a little bit more yellow so going a little bit more yellow instead of red whatever is most pleasing to the eye that's the hard part about skin is that I'm gonna tell you how to get it how it really is and then how to improve it but of course there's always the like what looks best to you kind of thing looks good you have any questions in general out there in the internet makeup or otherwise I'm happy to field any questions that are out there while she's we d'oh and how long does the contour usually take five seven minutes talks okay I'm okay with that so I should be able to look like this every morning when I walk out of the house exactly it's exciting but I have to do them not really so lindsay there's questions about natural light bird woman said so you apply twenty five percent more make up if you're planning to use artificial lights if you were shooting a natural light do you still need to apply more to make it show properly yes however you're going to go lighter on a contour with natural light than you would in flash photography and I usually do like ten I did too when I'm directing a makeup artist if it's supposed to look natural I wouldn't go with as like like she says like the harder contours because you can seem to tell it a little bit more because the natural light doesn't have like you know the natural doesn't carve out the cheeks like that verses in studio pal it's the studio and I also tend if it supposed to be natural to go with later tones in general like not really crisp unless in doing our vanguard fashion for tired feet than I do what I want to extend on that question what the contouring also depend on the time of day so like so you're shooting at noon if you even runaway would lately you're shooting at that time of day where is really harsh or verses later in the afternoon when the sun's starting to set in a little bit softer well what I try to do it for to tell my makeup artist that I tried to say like for example I'll say we're shooting in direct sunlight I have this editorial that I love I can't show you get because not published but I shot it it's all lit by the sun in the desert in dubai but I told the makeup artist I'm not using flash I'm not using reflectors she's going to be lit by the sun and every shot so I was trying to communicate that to her and I kind of left it up to her so I just tell them I'm going to light and it's my makeup artist always says the first thing she says to me she goes what's the light going to look like and what's the mood we're going for so I show her kind of a picture and she goes oh yes it's dewey oh yes yes anymore contour and so that's how she talks lindsay question here from alan birch who is from missouri and ask as a photographer who is less experienced in the details of makeup artistry are there any telltale ways to see when you have a bad makeup artist um interesting um when I look at a make up artist portfolio the thing that photographers do wrong is instead of looking at the makeup artist work they look at the photography the makeup might be amazing in the photographer might suck so you gotta like separate yourself just because it's a good or bad photo doesn't mean the makeup was good or bad so what I try to look for is does it look believable do I see any crisp lines the colors seem to match does it look like the makeup is fitting the mood of that shot of course the makeup are the photographer could always directed incorrectly I would definitely say this is come with practice and also just random thing coming up with ideas pinterest I look for makeup on pinterest and then also there's a couple of magazines in new york that show all the makeup on the runway and it's not retouched it's nothing's you could actually see what the makeup looks like and we use that for a lot of references in our studio okay what's going on here done excellent I didn't look did you come for any shadows yeah idea I wasn't watching e under the cheek bones under the jaw line down the nose here and before I had a vendor over here I'm like we'll see how it photographs that might have you go heavier come for I will tell you for portrait that looks pretty good when I do fashion editorials like to the eye it looks ridiculous but with the way that I usually shoot for contract is usually like perfect okay all right let's take a look that says that she looks very serious okay and wait not perfect great and then can turn your head to the side again all right and then can you can you bring up before straight on and the after straight on and you know that kind of thing cases a little bit more contouring there can you do the side one is well then we go to a little bit heavier like car bro even a little bit more did I change my exposure it's looking a little bit exposure changing but I see I see that she's got more more cheekbones there for sure so I'm going to tell you just go like gupta heavier okay give it a little bit more okay perfect I have had an extremes working with a makeup artist where I just she was not communicating understanding what I was saying even like my models were understanding what I was trying to tell her and were just like no you're doing this wrong so what can you do in those kinds of situations are what's the best way tio kind of like they this is not working with start over figure out howto correct about yeah so a big one for me and this is no offense still love me and just have to say something um I found on photo shoots that most of the artists including makeup been hair everybody has an ego because they're artists and this is their art and so when often when you tell people something is wrong there like not happy with you at all um so I kind of I tried to nudge first I start with the nudge you know I don't think that that will translate correctly member the camera thing I'll say I you know what don't think that translate correctly I think that that color it's going to be a little bit too harsh for the mood we're going for or you know what I don't think that's going to quite show up the way that we're looking for okay if that doesn't work I shoot whatever they did I shoot it for a few frames said looks good but let's make a little change and I saw you shoot it so that they feel like they were validated you know that I respected there are and then we move on and we don't use that photo yes do most marked makeup artists know howto work with photography so I think that this is a really good question I wanted to ask you how you mean you just did you just figure this out from experience yes because I not not always in fact this is something that I look for if I don't look for people that do like specifically like makeup for weddings or like just pretty everyday makeup because it's not heavy enough for photography and if you look at so the makeup artist used in new york a lot and is well definitely look at mccomas work but makeup artist I work with in new york her her instagram is greece l em you a g e r s e l l e m u a makeup artist and you'll see the way that she contours oh to the instagram photos even it looks almost ridiculous like how much but it photographs perfectly there's another woman who I've met and worked with a couple times that she is really good with dark skin tones her name's theresa francine and if you check out her facebook she transforms completely and it's heavy like it's really heavily done but it looks beautiful so yeah not not everybody knows how to do it and so I try I try to see some sample of what they've done because yeah just pretty everyday makeup doesn't quite work okay yeah that's yeah that's settled yet that'll be that'll show up even more cool all right so it probably take a couple shots of this and wrap up see if there's any questions on that will move on and spend a few minutes talking about retouching so lindsay there's been quite a few questions about what to look for in a makeup artist portfolio a question from I am howard lee and some other people when you're looking at people's websites what are you looking for exactly and then so I'll tell you what I look at it this shot if I photographed this I'm definitely coming back to that one so something I'd look at in these shots is I definitely like the cheekbone but I would say okay I can see the contouring on the nose and so I say could you just blend it a little bit more and that's like not a big deal so cue pleasant nose in just a tiny bit more and then you go back to the straight on but I'm not looking at her face I look at the photo because it's not the same it probably can look really really harsh on the face and then be totally fine in the photograph so yeah I think the cheeks are much better maybe a little bit honey but blended on the right bottom but I love this looks much better like that is much more of a cheekbone there I like the shape of the nose it just good I see kind of a line there and that's probably about it so I shoot it and we make tweaks and that's why I sent my light up I have a look we have a conversation that I say okay we're ready to shoot um what I'm looking for in a makeup artist portfolio from me in particular I mean you're what I'm looking for is makeup that fit the mood or that like is correctly is really showing the best attributes of that subject like if it's the makeup looks like the girl had a large nose and the makeup drew even more attention to it like I'm just tryingto see like how did they work with that person's face I don't have a really good answer because I wasn't always good at it because I always looked at them the photography not the makeup so I had to get better for me generally glitter in a portfolio is a dead giveaway to stay away in general not always um and a lot for me like a lot of costume that comes across I'm just this's it comes across kind of drag queen ish that usually is like they don't they don't know the line there so I'm looking for those things so I'm looking for enough to fit the mood but not so much that it looks like a costume it's been practicing all right we'll take another shot of that and I think we're all good with that so go yeah perfect good and turned to the side for me okay so yeah like that looks much more controversial and so would you compare that one in the first one for me and I think we'll be all set so I'm starting to give her like a little bit more shape to the face a little bit more dimension on my weight balance does not match so I think that would make a difference was the weight balance on didn't reset when the camera died is that why I don't know if it was yeah yeah maybe I have tto white balance it actually kind of won with my color checker and uh so then I can include this like in the presentation you can see when it's all matched up we'll do one color checker shot all right so after this what I'm going to do is just spend a couple minutes not long at all a couple of minutes talking about retouching and how I decide how far is too far but we're doing day three is the hands on parts perfect good all right so we'll be able to give you an idea of how this contrary makes the difference

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Makeup Contour Reference
Retouching Checklist
Frequency Separation
Retouching Files
Keynote 1
Keynote 2
Gear Guide
Skin Retouching Action File

Ratings and Reviews

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!!

Kirsi Todd

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!

Andrew Lederman

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?

Student Work