Personal Photoshop Challenge | Before & After Photoshop Makeover

Last month I watched a few tutorials during CreativeLIVE's Photoshop Week and learned some new techniques. (By the way, if you have not discovered CreativeLIVE yet and you are a photographer… what are you waiting for? It's free education if you watch it live!) So when I got done, I decided I wanted to challenge myself and see how far I could stretch my Photoshop muscles. Despite the fact I have been using Photoshop since I was in college a decade "few years" ago, there are always new things to learn and improve on. One new technique I learned in particular was retouching using frequency separation – it's non-destructive to skin texture and pretty much amazing! I also learned how to realistically apply digital makeup. If you want to learn these techniques, check out Lindsay Adler's tutorials on CreativeLIVE from Photoshop Week. Specifically, this one. Totally worth the $29. Awesome!

I grabbed my camera and snapped a selfie by the window, without makeup and without styling my hair. Okay, I might have flipped my head over for a little extra volume. I can't believe I am about to show you what I actually look like in the morning. Ermahgerd!

Before & After:

Before and After Photoshop Makeover 

I adjusted the white balance in Lightroom (I prefer warm skin), applied very, very light skin smoothing with the Lightroom Portaiture Plug-in, and everything else I did in Photoshop by hand.

Obviously it would have been more efficient to style my hair and apply makeup to save time in post, but I really wanted to see how far I could take it. I'm not gonna lie, I wish I could Photoshop my face in real life. The real test was to use the photo as my profile picture for a while and see if anyone cried foul. Either no one spoke up or no one could detect that it was fake. Ha! 🙂

  • Alison - I love this!! What is great is that you photoshopped out some blemishes, but the important part that I love is you still left plenty of texture and "real" skin that you can see instead of that smoothed over perfection that most people go for. I personally love details, like your freckles. It keeps the picture true to life.

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