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I had last posted about some new self-portraits (or, bulky selfies) that I took. I tend to focus on the experience that surrounds arriving at the photograph itself, but not so much on sharing what happens after the photographing is done. I mentioned that I did some editing, but I wanted to show a bit more of an in-depth look.

The image on the left is what I had straight out of camera. I had been shooting everything relatively overexposed in the past. Recently, I have experimented shooting underexposed. My reason for doing this is to preserve the extremely light and faint background details. I am able to have more control on how they look in the end. Then I would see how far I could push the rest of the image up, which in this case, includes a lot of shadows and darker mid-tones.

The middle image is what I had exported out of Lightroom. That's where the bulk of the post-production work is done. I am able to tonally even out the image and play around with color temperature without permanently altering the file. What I love about Lightroom is the history list that is present every time I view a file. That seems to be something that Capture One hasn't quite added yet. The presets menu is also available in the same column, which is much more handy than having to use a drop-down menu that hovers over the image like in Capture One (really, guys?).

The image on the right is my final image from Photoshop. I feel more comfortable using certain tools there than in Lightroom. Photoshop seems to have a more refined touch, while masking with Lightroom seems almost like hazing. I made the whites of my eyes whiter. I added more contrast to my eyes, eyeliner, eyebrows, earrings, and a bit on my lips and the brown of my hair. These are things that I don't typically do in portraits, as I feel some sort of moral dilemma retouching to modify people's appearances. It's good to know and to practice.

Anywho, I lightened the shadow under my eye a bit and added a highlight in my eyes as well. Those highlights are something that seems to be missing in a large amount of portrait photography, and it's just unfortunate. I also changed the color temperature again. It felt too warm for me, and it seems more fluid to make color adjustments with curves in Photoshop than with a slider in Lightroom.

I hope you enjoyed the sneak peek into my dark digital lair! Muahaha!



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