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Skin 101: Lighting, Retouching and Understanding Skin

with Lindsay Adler

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  •   Trailer

  •   09 Direction of Light


Class duration: 15h 18m

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    28 student reviews

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About The Class

Get an in-depth education shooting a variety of skin textures and tones.

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

Topics Covered

Lesson Plan

  1. 01

    Skin Essentials: White Balance

  2. 02

    Shoot: Setting White Balance Demo

  3. 03

    Skin Essentials: Mixed Lighting, Color Contamination

  4. 04

    Camera Settings: Files

  5. 05

    Camera Settings: Color Spaces

  6. 06

    Color Management

  7. 07


  8. 08

    Shoot: Quality of Light

  9. 09

    Direction of Light

    See how a light source and its position dramatically changes the appearance of a person's skin.

  10. 10

    Makeup: Basics

  11. 11

    Shoot: Contouring

  12. 12


  13. 13

    Shoot: Oily Skin

  14. 14

    Shoot: Wrinkled Skin

  15. 15

    Shoot: Blotchy or Blemished Skin

  16. 16

    Skin Challenges: Pale and Dark

  17. 17

    Shoot: Dark Skin

  18. 18

    Dark Skin Q&A

  19. 19

    Shoot: Pale Skin and Multiple Skin Tones

  20. 20

    Shoot: Dark Skin in Sunlight

  21. 21

    Shoot: Mixed Tones and Pale Skin in Sunlight

  22. 22

    Skin Challenges: Dark Skin Outside

  23. 23

    Skin Challenges: Multiple Skin Tones Outside

  24. 24

    Shoot: Male Fitness

  25. 25

    Shoot: Female Beauty

  26. 26

    Retouching: Workspace Setup

  27. 27

    Retouching Skin: Removing Redness

  28. 28

    Retouching Skin: Basic Tools

  29. 29

    Retouching Skin: Frequency Separation

  30. 30

    Retouching: Contouring

  31. 31

    Retouching Contouring Wrinkles

  32. 32

    Retouching Skin: Oily and Freckles

  33. 33

    Retouching: Mixed Lighting

  34. 34

    Retouching: Color Casts

  35. 35

    Retouching: Color Correction

  36. 36

    Retouching: Shaping the Face

  37. 37

    Retouching: Beauty


Meet Your Expert

Lindsay Adler

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.  ... read more

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Bonus Material

Access your course materials here!

Get access to exclusive bonus content when you purchase this class.

  • pdf Makeup Contour Reference
  • pdf Retouching Checklist
  • pdf Frequency Separation
  • pdf Retouching Files
  • pdf Keynote 1
  • pdf Keynote 2
  • pdf Gear Guide

100% of students recommend this class.
See what some of them have to say.

  • Aliah Husain

    Aliah Husain

    June 2017

    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!!

  • Andrew Lederman

    Andrew Lederman

    March 2019

    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?

  • user 0fde94

    user 0fde94

    March 2017

    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.

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