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Basics of beauty portrait retouching| Assignment: Long Exposures

Presented by Benoît Barbé

The presentation will start with a brief history of portrait retouching, in the darkroom and in the digital age.

Then the retouching of an image will start with the importation in Photoshop via Camera Raw. Followed by some retouching basics:

  • How to “clean” your image : background, model (hair-skin) and anything that would be distracting for the viewer.
  • Dodging and burning: two very simple but effective techniques to add controlled contrast to your images.
  • Selective sharpening.
  • It will end with some creativity tips using the Curve adjustments.

During the whole presentation we will go over keyboard shortcuts and, most importantly how to blend those retouches in your photo to get a natural look.

Assignment: Long Exposures
Try your hand at keeping that shutter open as long as possible.  Explore the creative possibilities of blurring movement, tracking stars, or painting with light. A few reminders about some of the basic rules of the assignment:

  • Members may submit 2 photos.
  • Photos should be emailed to Mike the Wednesday prior to the Thursday meeting.

If you have any additional questions about submitting photos or the monthly assignment in general, consult the Assignment FAQ by clicking on the link below:

Remember to get your shots to Mike B (as jpg's please) at [masked].



Millersville Student Memorial Center
Millersville University
1 South George Street, Millersville, PA
Room 24 (Parking in the rear of the building)

We will be handing out parking permits on site for this meetup which you will then place in your car.  You will need the one day permit to park in the the parking lot directly behind the SMC on Shenks Lane.

To see a map of the parking lot in question click on the following link:

To see the entrance you will be using from that parking lot to the SMC click on the following link:

Join or login to comment.

  • michele

    Thanks Benoit.

    July 19, 2013

  • John F.

    OK, I'm sold. Your use of high pass filter for sharpening is pretty slick -- it gives me much more control than I originally perceived. I'm doing it in GIMP, but it's working nicely. I create the high pass layer, and I can nicely evaluate how it sees edges and textures in the grey. If I see too much texture, I just run a noise reduction on it (which leaves the edges) or ultimately go in and mask in just the sharpening I want (as Benoît demonstrated). I like to see it oversharpened and then dial it back, so I apply the high pass in hard light blending mode and play with the opacity.

    1 · July 14, 2013

  • Neelima

    Very good presentation, learned a lot. Thanks Benoit.

    July 13, 2013

  • Linda K.

    Great presentation. I took lots of notes. I definitely will try some of your techniques and also try to learn some of the short cuts. Thanks again!

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Kim

    Great presentation, Benoit! Thanks for sharing how you use your technical skills, your artist's eye and your patience & persistence to turn your creative intentions into beautiful portraits!

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Marcus


    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Taylor B.

    A little fast paced, but a lot was gone over in a short amount of time. Very informative and good examples. We're all visual people so we need that! Thanks Benoit!

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Deb B.

    First timer, enjoyed the presentation that Benoit did. Also seeing all the photos.

    July 12, 2013

  • benoît

    Joseph, I use a Wacom Intuos5 tablet. Thanks everybody for the nice comments :)

    July 12, 2013

  • Ken P.

    Excellent presentation, Well done. thanks for sharing.

    July 12, 2013

  • greG

    Awesome presentation. Learned quite a bit. Lovely photos for the critique as well.

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Lynn G.

    Great job, Benoît!

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Joseph D.

    Benoît, what model of drawing tablet were you using last night? I missed your answer.

    July 12, 2013

  • Joseph D.

    This was a well-done presentation. I liked the balance between the short history of retouching, Benoît's personal philosophy/tastes, and the step-by-step tutorial. And now I can't stop seeing stray hairs. :)

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Jenn D.

    Very well done!

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • John F.

    Excellent work, Benoit. I have a couple new things to try -- Nate and I were discussing that your techniques map into GIMP as well.
    Thanks for presenting.

    1 · July 12, 2013

  • Dr. Lee J. S.

    Benoît's presentation was excellent. He is an artist, "photodermatologist" and "photoplastic surgeon".

    July 12, 2013

  • Jim G.

    I learned some good techniques, thanks.

    July 12, 2013

  • Tim H.

    Thank you Benoît, great presentation!

    July 11, 2013

  • Jeromy D.

    Learned alot. Great job, Benoît.

    July 11, 2013

  • Melissa

    Fantastic! Thanks Benoît!

    July 11, 2013

  • TheBlackLion

    Grrrrrrr. I just found out that I wont be able to attend. Family emergency and I really wanted to learn this. Im so sorry

    July 11, 2013

  • Brian

    A last minute reminder for those coming out tonight, no students at Millersville = no parking passes for us! So come right into the meetup!

    July 11, 2013

  • Ed R.

    My first class and looking forward to it.

    2 · July 9, 2013

  • benoît

    You can see my digital model and fashion work here:

    Or my film work on my flikr, I started to add some digital picture to it but it is mostly film photography with different medium format film cameras.
    Thanks for looking and let me know what you think ;)

    1 · April 5, 2013

    • Linh A.

      Hi Benoit, I just saw your facebook page. I love all the pictures, especially the one with the model by the pool.

      1 · July 5, 2013

  • Adam H.

    Something came up and I can't make this month.

    July 1, 2013

  • Jim O.

    I consider myself an advanced beginner who loves fashion and glamour photography. I jump at every chance to expand my kniwledge.

    2 · June 10, 2013

  • John W.

    Traveling. I wish I could be at Benoit's presentation!

    March 29, 2013

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