This spot in the Palladium had a lot of jewel tones. I recently posted the edited version, on the right, on my main blog and it recently got an explosion of tumblr notes (at least, a lot for me) because it was designed by Art Nouveau favorite, Alfons Mucha.

Anyway, I was playing with the CS6 tilt-shift capabilities and bumped up the glow from the lanterns. I also tried sharpening something for the first time in years, and I think the edges of the chairs came out a bit crisper.

Still, nothing will ever fix the fact that I didn’t take one more step to the left to get a perfectly centered shot. Sort of unsettling how un-centered it is, right?

Okay, bear with me on this one. On this one, another of our superhero shoots, the hard light of mid-day created some pretty overbearing shadows on Kathy doing an otherwise striking pose. Kathy naturally has an orange corona around her pupils, so I got out my dodge tool and lightened up her eyes. Now they stand out like crazy! I don”t know if I’d do that on a normal portrait, but it seems a bit more normal for our superhero looks. Also, colorization.

Superhero Mandy! In this one, I played a lot with color balance settings- I began to feel the original was very magenta. Also, I added in desaturated adjustment layer, set on multiply, to add some weight to the shadows. I also added a tiny yellow radial yellow gradient, which is barely visible over Mandy’s hair. I did that to highlight the reds in her hair and give it a warm glow.

Edit: Now that I see them next to each other, I think she looks far too yellow. Back to Photoshop…

Edit 2: Added a pink spot over Mandy’s face to warm it up. How’s that look?

Edit 3: Of course, part of this is getting the photo’s subjects to like how they look in the shot, too. I asked Mandy what she thought, and she told me she felt something about her jawline looked blurry. I touched it up a bit. Does it look natural?

Time to start working on my portrait editing. The wedding I’m photographing is in a little over two months!

Prague Castle from the eastern banks of the Vltava. 

Katie P. at the Prague Castle Terrace Cafe. I don’t know if what I did made it any better, but I could play with this photo all the time.

Grandpa Peterson. His old photography is really inspiring to me. Kind of doubting darkening the shadows on him; it may be making him look older.

Zack. I daresay he looks happier in the edited version.

Joe. Looks much more natural in the edit. He’s always had a very slight green tone to his skin, so in turning that up, he suddenly looks even more real than he would if I had just turned down the over-saturated red.

Kate. My natural inclination is to over-saturate, but in toning that down, I found my sister really popped out of the picture.

Mandy. The differences are subtle here, but in the edited version, I like that Mandy’s hair looks fuller, with many highlights and lowlights.

I’ve found a system I like to use for editing portraits. Here’s the first one I did, a while back. It was satisfying to get rid of the red overtones on Zack’s face here.

I’m practicing making photos look older. Did it work or does it just look like some bad attempt from 2002?