Question for Photographers About Retouching

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#1 ~H~ on 5 years ago

I taught myself to use Photoshop about 20 years ago, and have used it professionally in my work as a colorist. I also use it for fun to retouch my own photographs as well as photos of friends on occasion.

I am looking to earn some extra money, and thought I might be able to put my photo retouching skills to work!

I enjoy retouching photos, but am not a great photographer myself. So my question to those of you that are photographers:

Where do you go to get your photos retouched?

I want to advertise my services, find out what the going rates are, etc. However I'm not sure where to begin. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

#2 nathancarter on 5 years ago

I generally do them myself, to keep complete control over the process. I don't outsource, for a variety of reasons:
- I have little confidence that my vision would match the retoucher's vision.
- I have little confidence that a retouching service will provide consistent results from set to set.
- A retoucher that will do a better job than me, match my vision, and provide consistent results will likely be more expensive than I'm willing to pay.

It's something that I may consider in the future, once I'm busy enough that keeping it in-house is not efficient or cost-effective, AND as my clients start to skew toward those who can pay a rate that includes a professional, outsourced retouch on every photo.

Here are a couple of relevant threads - I'm sure there are more but I am not going to search for them right now; I'll leave that to you.

[url]http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1362635[/url]
[url]http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1338946[/url]


We do outsource a handful of other things, such as camera operators for video work (when we need more than one or two live cameras), and professional voice-overs.

#3 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

If you want work modelmayhem has a ton of them that do exactly what you say youre looking to do...go there...hit up the forums..advertise yourself.

#4 ~H~ on 5 years ago

Thanks so much for the info guys ^_^. I'll check out the threads and modelmayhem.

#5 TykeJack on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=~H~;4842204]Thanks so much for the info guys ^_^. I'll check out the threads and modelmayhem.[/QUOTE]

You should probably have some before and after shots to showcase your work if you're going to hit up model mayhem.

#6 Dark Photog on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=TykeJack;4842286]You should probably have some before and after shots to showcase your work if you're going to hit up model mayhem.[/QUOTE]

You'll need at least three or four images for your account to be approved on Model Mayhem (I don't recall the exact number).

#7 Dark Photog on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=nathancarter;4842089]I generally do them myself, to keep complete control over the process. I don't outsource, for a variety of reasons:
- I have little confidence that my vision would match the retoucher's vision.
- I have little confidence that a retouching service will provide consistent results from set to set.
- A retoucher that will do a better job than me, match my vision, and provide consistent results will likely be more expensive than I'm willing to pay.

It's something that I may consider in the future, once I'm busy enough that keeping it in-house is not efficient or cost-effective, AND as my clients start to skew toward those who can pay a rate that includes a professional, outsourced retouch on every photo.[/QUOTE]

My feelings are the same, and I suspect most photographers would agree. At least when it comes to anything creative anyway...

#8 Dark Photog on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=~H~;4842062]I want to advertise my services, find out what the going rates are, etc. However I'm not sure where to begin. Can anyone point me in the right direction?[/QUOTE]

Rates for retouching can vary considerably. There are companies in various asian countries who do retouching for under a dollar per image, and there are some very good retouchers who charge a hundred dollars or more per image.

#9 ~H~ on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=TykeJack;4842286]You should probably have some before and after shots to showcase your work if you're going to hit up model mayhem.[/QUOTE]
[QUOTE=Dark Photog;4842314]You'll need at least three or four images for your account to be approved on Model Mayhem (I don't recall the exact number).[/QUOTE]

Thank you both! I've been checking-out modelmayhem to see what sorts of examples that others have posted. When I get a couple together I may post here as well to get your opinions if I may ^_^.

#10 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

Of course...but edits are probably even more subjective than photos themselves compared to what you can critique.

There are forums on MM too...and they can be brutal...but possibly a necessary evil if you want to go down this road.

When you say you are a colorist are you talking about comic coloring? If so do you have an examples of your work? I got out of comic illustration because sequentials got boring to me...but it was fun while it lasted.

#11 nathancarter on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=jonashley;4842433]Of course...but edits are probably even more subjective than photos themselves compared to what you can critique.

There are forums on MM too...and they can be brutal...but possibly a necessary evil if you want to go down this road.
[/QUOTE]

Agreed.

If you can't stand up to scrutiny and critique by other retouchers and photographers, what are you going to do when you have an unhappy client? Friends and family will always say "Oh, it's great work, you're so skilled, it's perfect" - but friends and family are not your paying clients.

You've got it even harder than the rest of us. My client is the subject, but your client is the photographer. Photographers are picky, especially about our own work, and ultra-triple-specially if we feel that another person is butchering our work.


Having said that: Feel free to flip through my flickr and facebook page; and if you see one you want to use to demonstrate your skills on a before-and-after, I'll (probably) be happy to send you the raw. Most of my recent work has been on our [URL="http://www.facebook.com/avidchickproductions"]Avidchick[/URL] fan page and not my personal FB page. I think my lighting style is a little different than most other folks here, plus I shoot a lot of very high-ISO stage performance stuff, just to give you a variety of things to work with and show off your skills.

#12 ~H~ on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=jonashley;4842433]Of course...but edits are probably even more subjective than photos themselves compared to what you can critique.

There are forums on MM too...and they can be brutal...but possibly a necessary evil if you want to go down this road.[/QUOTE]

Alrighty then, I'll brace myself @[email protected]


[QUOTE=jonashley;4842433]When you say you are a colorist are you talking about comic coloring? If so do you have an examples of your work? I got out of comic illustration because sequentials got boring to me...but it was fun while it lasted.[/QUOTE]

Cool ^_^. I did a lot of uncredited comic work (assisting David Mack and others), but mostly I color magazine pinups. What have you worked on?

Here is a link to my (and my husband's) portfolio website if you're curious to see what we do:
[url]http://artplaymix.com/home.html[/url]

I've also got a Comic Book Database Creator profile here: [url]http://www.comicbookdb.com/creator.php?ID=15938[/url]

#13 ~H~ on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=nathancarter;4842473]Having said that: Feel free to flip through my flickr and facebook page; and if you see one you want to use to demonstrate your skills on a before-and-after, I'll (probably) be happy to send you the raw. Most of my recent work has been on our [URL="http://www.facebook.com/avidchickproductions"]Avidchick[/URL] fan page and not my personal FB page. I think my lighting style is a little different than most other folks here, plus I shoot a lot of very high-ISO stage performance stuff, just to give you a variety of things to work with and show off your skills.[/QUOTE]

That's very awesome of you to offer! Thank you! You take beautiful photos ^_^.

#14 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=~H~;4842474]
Here is a link to my (and my husband's) portfolio website if you're curious to see what we do:
[url]http://artplaymix.com/home.html[/url]

I've also got a Comic Book Database Creator profile here: [url]http://www.comicbookdb.com/creator.php?ID=15938[/url][/QUOTE]

Cool, I was never a good colorist...I was raised in a world where all I had to do was the pencils so I got lazy in thinking of color and im just now starting to try to visualize it when I draw.

I did some ronin studios publications
[url]http://www.amazon.com/Memories-Echoes-Remembering-World-War/dp/1930050054/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top[/url]

and the insides to a few other books.

You can find my current sketches here if you get bored
[url]http://jonashley69.deviantart.com/gallery/[/url]

#15 ~H~ on 5 years ago

So I got my ModelMayhem page up an running, with examples of some photos I retouched. If any of you are on there as well and would like to connect I'm all about making contacts and friends!

[url]http://www.modelmayhem.com/artplaygirl[/url]


@jonashley: Nice work! My husband never learned how to color his pencil/ink work either (I think I spoiled him ^_-).

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