Me… Only Better

March 26th, 2019

Retouching – it’s one of the the not so little things that I pay particular attention to when creating a portrait.  A beautiful portrait starts with beautiful light.  Why not finesse it to create the very best version of yourself?


I make no apologizes for the amount of retouching I have put in an image.  I honestly believe that when we look at an image of someone we love, we already see exactly what I have retouched.  Life, stress, and gravity take its toll on our bodies.  My pictures depict my clients as they would look on their very best days.  I actually enhance an image with many little details.  I think it has made my work look distinctive.  I believe it’s the sum of all of these little things that create a final image with a bit of “wow.”  🙂


I took some time over this last week to create a few “selfies” in my studio for some before retouching and after images.  (By the way, I have come to the conclusion that the more selfies you take, the more critical you get of yourself.)


I chose this image for a couple of reasons.  I usually have an open smile, showing my teeth.  This is not my typical self-portrait.  I looked at this image and I saw my resemblance to my dad and I also saw my daughter who often smiles this way.


First I start lightening circles & wrinkles under the eyes.  I slightly lighten the whites of the eyes, enhance the color of the eyes, and darken eyelashes.  These are pretty much standard with all of my portraits.  As I have gotten older, I have noticed sometimes I have visible veins on my forehead, I lightened these.  I reduced the reds of some skin around my neck and hands and removed a few age spots.  I wasn’t real happy with my neckline looking a bit rumpled so I fixed it.  I’m an “80’s girl” and I still like slightly bigger hair.  I “pushed down” the height of my hair, the product of too much backcombing that day.  Can’t tell?  I still have to stay somewhat 80’s-like.  🙂  I have a crooked nose, just like my dad.   🙂  It actually doesn’t bother me much but for these purposes, I straightened the shadow on my nose just a bit.  I smoothed the skin a little and then I adjusted the levels of light on the image.


I do not think that the average person would look at the after image and think, “Michelle really changed that picture!”  I think that they would be more inclined to think that the after version just looks better than the before image for some reason.


I have not photographed many head shots in the past.  I have a bit more time these days, so if you are interested in having a “polished” headshot  🙂  in this studio, please let me know.  I am now offering a digital only version that is emailed.





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