How-To: The Model-Look – Basic Portrait Enhancement

The model look

today I want to show you something completely different than my usual photos. Like most of you I like to browse photos on flickr and admire very different photo styles. Beside impressive HDR Landscape, I’m personally very much inspired by well done portrait photos enhanced or created by means of artificial light sources. It is interesting to enhance this raw image later in photoshop and give them a unique style. There are some masters out there, that do incredible work to express the personality of a person or the character of a situation. I would love to learn more in this area and have started therefore to buy one or two strobes and to “copy some style”.

This photo above is one of my first results in this area. I was wondering how this photographer get this typical model style we know from advertising. After some playing around with filters and lighting equipment I got to the result above. I decided to show you both the original studio shot and the photoshop enhanced end result, so you can differentiate between lighting and photoshop. Reminds me a bit on the Dove campaign for real beauty πŸ˜‰ Hope you like it.

some technical infos for the lighting:
– white Background (I didn’t had a flash left for illuminate this)
– silver reflector umbrella above the camera (you can see it in the eye reflection)
– white reflector underneath the face hand hold by the model (you see a little in the eyes)

Photoshop work
– normal tonemapping
– smoothing the skin with noiseware.
– increase symmetrie in the face (ears, position of eyes, nose, skull in general)
– Increase the lips
– increase contrast in the eyes. Emphaze the highlights there
– clone stamp the wrinkles (you never see any wrinkles in advertising ;-(

All this small changes result in this advertising look.
Below you see a second example of a low-key photo.

Hope you like the post. Any recommendations?

All the best


The model look