25 December 2016

Post-processing Street Portraits

The Pareto principle (aka the 80/20 rule, the law of the vital few, or the principle of factor sparsity) states that, for many events and processes, roughly 80 % of the effects come from 20 % of the causes. Applied to the post-processing of street portraits, it means that c. 80 % or more of the raw images can be edited with c. 20 % or less of the available tools in any post-processing software, e.g. Adobe Photoshop Elements. The following simple workflow procedure for Adobe Photoshop Elements is a practical and straightforward application of the above-mentioned Pareto principle.

Step 1:
To check and decide whether to keep or delete the image (criteria: e.g. the subject’s pose/expression, the image’s sharpness and composition.


Unprocessed image.


Step 2:
To straighten the image horizontally (...if necessary).


Straightened image.


Step 3:
To crop the image into the desired/standardized aspect ratio and format (e.g. 4 : 3 aspect ratio, horizontal format).


Cropped image (e.g. 4x3 aspect ratio).


Step 4:
To apply a subliminal, almost invisible rectangular black vignette.


Black vignette applied.


Step 5:
To use the quick selection tool for selecting the face, refine the selection's edge (feather with 12 ... 20 px, smoothen, improve contrast), and sharpen the subject's face.


Face sharpened.


Step 6:
To use the quick selection tool for selecting the face, refine the selection's edge (feather with 12 ... 20 px, smoothen, improve contrast), and enhance the subject's face by adjusting the colour of the face, by using colour curves in order to lighten shadows, by removing any colour cast, by de/saturating and/or improving the vibrance of the face, and by lightening the eyes.


Face enhanced/improved.


Step 7:
To use the quick selection tool for selecting the subject, refine the edge (feather with 8 ...12 px, smoothen, improve contrast, and inverse), and enhance the subject's background by adjusting colour and lighting of the background (e.g. desaturate and darken).


Background enhanced/improved; done.



More post-processed examples:

Matt Hahnewald Photography; Facing the World; closeup; street portrait; headshot; outdoor; Asia; South Asia; India; Tamil Nadu; Karaikal; Karaikal Ammaiyar Temple; Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G; travel; travel destination; Tamil man; Hinduism; photography; colour; portraiture; person; people; eyes; black hair; face; eye contact; religion; vibhuti; third eye; elaborate tripundra; tilaka mark; Shiva; Shaivite devotee; handsome Indian man; Shaivism; pencil moustache

Matt Hahnewald Photography; green eyes; beauty; sindoor; maang; Facing the World; photography; photo; image; spectacular; lively; outstanding; fantastic; favourite; superior; excellent; magnificent; brilliant; breathtaking; Nikon D3100; Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G; prime lens; 50mm; 4 : 3 aspect ratio; horizontal format; closeup; portrait; portraiture; street; headshot; en face; front view; depth of field; bokeh; outside; colour; world cultures; cultural; real people; human; human head; human face; bindi; human eyes; beautiful eyes; teeth; facial expression; eye contact; consent; empathy; rapport; encounter; environmental portrait; ethnic portrait; travel; religion; Hinduism; pooja; temple; Dakshineswar; Calcutta; West Bengal; India; one person; female; posing; authentic; smiling; beautiful; gorgeous; fabulous; attractive; charming; fascinating

Matt Hahnewald Photography; Facing the World; closeup; street portrait; headshot; outdoor; South Asia; Asia; India; Tamil Nadu; Tiruvannamalai; Nikon D3100; Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G; travel; travel destination; Hinduism; photography; colour; portraiture; person; people; eyes; face; eye contact; hands; Indian man; dreadlocks; Baba Shankar; yogī; healer; spiritual helper; crystals; hand-made healing jewellery; smiling eyes; smiling; black beard; tilaka mark

Matt Hahnewald Photography; Facing the World; photography; photo; image; spectacular; outstanding; fantastic; favourite; superior; excellent; magnificent; vibrant; Nikon D3100; Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G; prime lens; 50mm; 4 : 3 aspect ratio; horizontal format; closeup; portrait; street; headshot; en face; outside; colour; character; personality; human; human head; human face; makeup; human eyes; teeth; lips; facial expression; eye contact; consent; empathy; rapport; respect; encounter; fun; environmental portrait; travel; market; Pak Khlong Talat; Flower Market; Bangkok; Thailand; one person; adult; posing; attitude; authentic; smiling; elegant; sophisticated; gorgeous; fabulous; attractive; handsome; cheerful; adorable; joyous; classy; sexual ambiguity; ambiguous; sexually ambiguous person; transgender; genderqeer; ladyboy; shemale; drop earrings

Matt Hahnewald Photography; Facing the World; photography; photo; image; spectacular; outstanding; fantastic; favourite; superior; excellent; magnificent; Nikon D3100; Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G; prime lens; 50mm; 4 : 3 aspect ratio; horizontal format; closeup; portrait; portraiture; street; headshot; en face; front view; outdoor; colour; cultural; character; personality; real people; human head; human face; human eyes; facial expression; eye contact; full beard; head wrap; consent; empathy; rapport; respect; encounter; mood; dignity; travel; religion; Hinduism; tradition; beggar; sadhu; holy man; devotee; Dakshineshwar Temple; Calcutta; West Bengal; India; Indian man; one person; male; adult; posing; attitude; authentic; awesome; soulful; serious; moustache


More post-processed street portraits in Matt Hahnewald's Flickr Albums

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