The Business of Professional Photo Retouching

 

Lesson Info

Male Model Examples

Excellent, so if you could just stand behind for just a second... great. One of the things that happens on a coverage: think. It always happens on a coverage ... It always happens on a coverage! Is, when you're shooting models together no one thinks before that session, that pose, that set-up is done, to have the front model step out. And you're actually done for now, you're good. Have the front model step out. Thank you very much. No, you stay. And shoot the other model and/or actor in the exact position, before you move them. Oh, pardon me. Thank you. Seriously, another small thing, because you try to recreate a part of a body from another shot that was shot ten minutes later, and the actor took two steps forward so everything's off. Nightmare. All you have to do is take one, even one or two frames, will get you covered. So, let's talk here. We're gonna talk about the pants. Rubber band legs. Alright, I'm going in, do you mind? Here I come, coming in. Honestly, you want to save...

some cash on a job? Here is a cash saver like I cannot begin to tell you. There was just a job I did last week for Jimmy Kimmel, some kind of awards show he's doing. Lovely clothes, beautiful suit... no one walked up to the gentleman, and did this. Not one person. He seems like a nice guy, I don't think he'd be too scary. That's about 15-20 minutes a shot. 15-20 mins a shot, not a big deal, not a huge cost, but you add that up for every frame? And you're talking about some cash there. Cool. Rubber band legs, please watch for them. I'd like to take a second to reiterate why is this going on, why am I doing this? It's because he is too busy. Normally you'd think the photographer's gonna do this, but he's working on this, he's working on vibe. Is his strobe going? Is the back strobe going? Wait, what's the shot list, do we have 25 shots to do today? Where am I at? He's not looking at rubber band legs, I assure you, not doing it. Another thing on gentlemen in particular; these boots are lovely, with dark shoes, if they're scuffed: sharpie. What did you say earlier about "five minutes"? Yeah, five minute arts and crafts session, saves you ten minutes each shot to take the scuff marks off. And it's just do it once, have it done, and it's not gonna re-scuff itself the very next shot. It'll be good all day: five minute investment. Excellent, and then you had another point which was really great about coating the bottom of the shoes with tape. Put masking tape on the bottom of the shoes, and it saves the seamless. Cuz it won't scuff up the seamless. Stylists will often put tape on the bottom of the shoes to save them, so they can return them, and not pay for them, but the masking tape on the bottom of the shoes prevents the seamless from getting all scuffed up. Would they ever have like a welcome mat? Just to wipe your shoes before you hit that white seamless? So, I think Simon is suggesting you buy all your photographer clients welcome mats for Christmas and have them use them on sets. It's a brilliant idea. Was that just invested right now? You did! Holy Smokes! You can put your logo on it and everything. Alright, glasses, do we have glasses? Not sure if we ... oh, excellent. The shoes! The shoes, the shoes. I'm gonna not trip over that. (photographer asks question) Yeah, that would be a great idea. So, the interesting thing about coverage, and I'm spending a bit of time talking about coverage this afternoon in general, is Casey can demonstrate how easy it is to get the glare out. So, you have a shot like this, he's gonna shoot it, you get glare; you just turn the head just this much and the glare is gone. Retoucher will call that out. They'll miss it, I promise you, they'll miss it on a shoot because you're busy. Ah! Vibe! Quick! Hurry! Client angry! Change costumes! The sun is leaving! Whatever the issue might be, but I assure you, let me jump over here, pardon me. See? Reconstructing eyes is not that easy. Have you tried it? It's not that easy, it's doable, everything's doable, but it costs some money. That I would not be pleased with, that would be trouble. And another solve for this if you really need whatever the setup is; the look, the angle, the vibe, have em shoot the exact same, exact same shot, with the glasses off and then strip em in. Still money, but: coverage. Coverage. The theme of the afternoon is coverage. Coverage, coverage, coverage. And with Tyler, I would point out his bracelets just that if, if all of a sudden it comes in and they have five shots of Tyler that have that little strand, just bring their attention to it so they know they gotta pay for it to be taken out or adjusted, or whatever, or I kind of go for the take all the jewelry off if it were me. Are those... you do not need to take them off, but can they be removed? So that's an... Yeah, just ask! Yeah, so there you go, just ask. With actors and actresses you don't get this opportunity. But with a model, you can ask. Now, I'm not sure that if a model has something that is non-removable, if they'll tell you in advance, but again, my job as supporter of all retouchers on the planet earth is I just want to make sure that this station is not paying for that. If the photographer won't ask, forgets to ask, or it's not removable, that is fine, it's all fixable, but you in that position do not want to pay the penalty for that. Cool? And then, we have the scuffed seamless. I don't know that we really need to scuff it up but I just wanna let you know, you really need to pay attention to the seamless. Absolutely 100% pay attention to it. This is in pristine shape because we've been following some decent rules here. But Lisa and I have had photo shoots where it's been an all-day, every actor on every show of a television studio comes through, and they, is there a name for that? It's like swiss cheese, I think we call it swiss cheese. Yeah, but I mean folks will come in with water bottles and water hits the floor and they don't want the guy stripped out on something else use that seamless and that gets, so everything else has water marks, oil marks, scuffed up marks, from nine to ten in the morning, fine, from ten on to two, you start getting a little busier. Two on to seven o'clock in the evening you got a lot of work just cleaning up seamless. Every one of those pictures. So what's a seamless run, about 100 bucks? Yeah, I mean, it depends how big but I'd say like 50 or 40, probably like 40 to 100 or so. How long would it take a crew to cut that and extend it again? Five minutes maybe, or less. Five minutes and a hundred bucks, verses, we kid you not, 50 shots, retouched. And our job was 440 shots, eventually. The beginning of the day was fine, by about the 400 mark, that thing just got chewed up, chewed up, and when you bid the job, they don't give you the last shot of the day, you get the first job of the day. Yep, so something to ask for when you're bidding. The other thing, if you notice the shadows going on here, oftentimes you really want the natural shadows, they look better, they look better than any hand-drawn shadow would, anyday. On a white seamless, that's easy peasy lemon squeezy to pull off. On a white seamless that's dinged up and cat scratched, you're hand drawing, and it just won't look as good. Nope. Nope, it takes some time. Excellent: shirt. So, we wanna talk a little bit about the shirt coming in, so: wrinkles. A little steaming goes a long, long way. Very little steaming, and his shirt is actually in super great shape if you have a stylist you want to be checking for those little tiny strings. I know it seems like nothing, little tiny strings, but imagine this: you're doing a shirt ad, or a glasses ad, and you're zoomed up this height on a figure and all you see are the buttons, you're gonna have to retouch them for every single one. What else did I want to talk about? His hair's great, coverage... Did you want to talk about...oh, I'm gonna talk about your hairy chest, do you mind? No. Awesome, lovely hairy chest, these are questions you've gotta ask your client, if there's hair and the client has an issue with hair, that's retouching time, so, well, this is one of those things so, you're not changing, you're not waxing him, I'm sure he's not gonna go for that but while you are the retoucher on set, Simon would be going over here saying, "Awesome, are you gonna want that hair out later?" Cuz that, again, is gonna change the time and the cost of the job. Who would have thought, right? We had a speedo job, a speedo catalog job, and, hair, they didn't want hair on the arms, all of it had to come off, and oddly enough, it was on the women. It was the hair on the women that had to come off, and that took a lot. Have you guys tried to paint hair off, on an arm? It's not easy; it's doable, but it's not easy and it's not cheap. Right? Coverage. Coverage, so we're gonna do that little dance of sorts we did yesterday. Simon called this out and I have to give you props for this, cuz I didn't remember this: eye coverage. So, do you remember a little bit about the gestures you did about looking sideways and up? So what you wanna do when you cover, Casey's gonna go ahead and shoot this part, when you shoot a portrait you wanna shoot their eyes going left, eyes going right, eyes up, eyes down, head turned. Do you wanna just shoot a couple just to demo? Even if you don't use this shot, if you use the shoot 100 before it, and they got squinty eyes, you got something to pull from. So this is the coverage, you just got your base, looking left, looking right, looking up, looking down, and you know you got those in your library so that when they do decide on one and they got a little squinty eye, one got a little lazy or whatever, you got stuff to use and donor back in, and save it. So with eyes, arms; different positions. There's the dance, the model dance you wanna do, not only arms, you called this out, which I thought was really good, it's positioning. It's turning... do you wanna just turn for a second? So it's turning this way with your head, it's doing the exact opposite with your head. And again they seem like really obvious things but you gotta remember with a lot of jobs what happens is the client has an idea in their head "This is what we're doing." Oh, we're doing a Dorito's ad, and we're talking, and we're eating chips, Casey and I are eating chips, and that's all we want, but, sure as heck, someone down the line is gonna say we want that same shot but can you guys be turned around, backwards? Seriously, it actually happens that the ad, oh we've got this great idea, we wanna be shooting you from behind, and we'll have the superbowl on the T.V. and won't that be great? Yeah, we didn't shoot that from behind... So, coverage, and coverage literally means... If you as a retoucher bring that up, and make the photographer look good that day if he forgot, if everyone forgot, maybe you don't get credit for it today, but the photographer's gonna get credit from the client, and when the client asks for that turned-around shot and he's got it? He's gonna be like, man, that retoucher I used the other day saved me. Let's keep him higher up in the rolodex for the next job. Yeah, that's a good time to point out, I'm gonna say it again: Captain of the ship. My job 100% is to make that person look good. 100%, however you have to do it, and how I find it is "pre-." It's really hard to have this conversation on the set. Have it beforehand, have the look, have it written down. The checklist. We did this, we've done a run-through. I've been doing this for years and even with the run-through yesterday it was like, oh, did we get everything? And you know what occurred to me? It's because I didn't have it literally, shot one: check. Shot two: check. Shot three: and you have to do it. So, as a retoucher, Simon and I do this, we have a sheet right there, right next to us, and as they do it you check it off. And then you're back-up for you. And he's gonna have his own list. His digitech is gonna have a list, but, I got my list.

Create your own retouching business from the ground up. In this class, one of Hollywood¹s hottest retouchers reveals the secrets to designing your own business. Lisa Carney walks through the steps needed to start and run a smooth business while keeping your clients engaged and happy. Whether you’re looking to work with photographers, agencies or even bill for post production - you’re bound to find valuable insight into the world of photo retouching.

This class covers:

  • Defining the type of retoucher you want to be
  • Solutions for the problems you’ll encounter on shoots and in post production
  • Communication techniques for clients
  • Secrets for setting realistic expectations from markups through revisions
  • Pricing your services and handling billing issues
  • Emergency tips for when jobs go off the rails

Get the inside scoop from a true insider. You’ll finish this class knowing how to construct a profitable photo retouching business model AND develop the tools to sustain it.

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • I'm a photographer who wants to be as good at Photoshop as possible. In my field few retouchers get hired, so it's all on me. Plus my creative vision cannot be accomplished by photography alone. Not to mention that in the field, as a photographer I can't always be perfect. Photoshop to the rescue. This is possibly THE best class I've purchased on Creative Live, and they've all been good. Great insight, entertaining, well taught Lisa and Simon were awesome. Bought more LC tutorials based on this course.
  • This course just opened my world. I started ( back in the Jurassic era) as an illustrator/drafter ( pen and ink), then CAD programmer, then GIS analyst with photoshop just coming onto the scene then...got pregnant and unplugged focusing on parenting and my inner artist. I was gifted an IPad 6 years ago in the mist of my Taxi Mom years. My favorite ‘hobby’ became manipulating images and an addiction to Adobe apps. Now, In my new empty nest status, I have been trying to figure out my next direction in life....and CreativeLive has been a wonderful resource to explore different creative opportunities, feeling somewhere between photography and graphic design, I wanted to ‘paint’ photos with my tool of choice the tablet, not the camera. ...but it wasn’t until this course that I clicked with an Aha! I don’t have to become an photographer? I could get paid to retouch? Other people’s photos?.....and, I have a work history skill set that backs it up! Thank you so much for this course! Loved the instructors and how they shared their experiences and knowledge. You two have just provided a wonderful map and whole new path to explore and inspired a much needed creative spark to get back to work❤️. Thank You!
  • Lisa knocked it out of the ball park again! Amazing work Lisa and Simon! I just can't find the many words that express how much I gain with each and every course she teaches. Once again, a wealth of information that was given in a down to earth manner. I absolutely love her teaching style! Amazing course Lisa and Simon, awesome job!