Exercise- Improvement or Interpretation

Start by photographing a portrait in a setting, and then use a manual selection method to select just the area of the person. The two most useful methods would be either a kind of lasso tool, with which you can draw an outline, or mask painting with a brush. Having done this, make any kind of adjustment to this area that makes it stand out more clearly from the surroundings.

Below is the original image prior to editing;


I have listed the steps I followed in order to enhance the image;

– Make a selection of the little girl using the lasso tool in Photoshop.

– Save this selection

– Using Curves, increase the contrast of the subject slightly

– Increase the brightness of the subject slightly

– Create a new colour balance layer, and increase the blue slider +10 in order to darken the colour of the subject’s coat. Also decrease the green slider to -9 in order to neutralise the colour of the little girl’s skin.

IMG_6446.jpg edited blue +10 green -9 (2)

As you can see, the subject is much more prominent in the edited image, and the colours of her clothes are far more vibrant. I feel that the improvements work well without being too intrusive to the image. I experimented with editing this image, and decided that there was a point whilst increasing the contrast that the image became too fake and the editing felt illigitimate. Also increasing the colour sliders too much resulted in the image looking a little unrealistic too. Below is an example of the image being edited beyond an innocent legitimate adjustment.

IMG_6446.jpg too much (2)

This was an interesting exercise which further aided me in cementing my opinions on how much editing I am comfortable with.


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