Sunday, January 23, 2011

What chicken pox?

Before I discovered the healing brush tool in Photoshop, I bought Portrait Professional, which is a retouching program known lately because they advertise before and after photos like these:

What I don't like about the program is that it actually contours the face. I don't know their algorithm, but they make eyes larger, and noses smaller, and lips fuller, and cheekbones higher, ETC. It's creepy. But, I am going to defend their use of a cute, little freckle-faced girl, because they probably didn't want to use an acne-pocked seventeen-year-old boy in their ad. It wouldn't make anyone feel good.

I think you are supposed to see the image, and instead of being offended by it, apply it to your own photos. "Oh, that could do wonders for that seventeen-year-old boy I photographed last week." Or something like that.

Here's a photo of me before and after, using the Portrait Professional default settings. Notice my face shape is slightly different. I'm not offended. I know my face is shaped like a pumpkin.

So, I put them to the test. I wanted to see what they could do with the pox-plagued face of my little baby. You've seen the before:

Here's the after:

Portrait Professional is very easy and very fast. I simply uploaded her picture and after about five mouse clicks, this is what they came up with. I disabled the face contouring. Not bad, but not perfect.

So, I spent about a minute in Photoshop with the healing brush tool and this is the final result.

Not bad retouching in less than two minutes. But, I absolutely do not recommend you buy Portrait Professional. It's not worth the money, and it's weird, and I wish I'd never bought it.


The Burnetts said...

I think you looked much more lovely in your before picture than you after. Just to let you know!

eve said...

oh my gosh- talk about creepy.
"honey, we think you just look better without your freckles. and we really think blue eyes are prettier than green. and let's ditch those wrinkles by your mouth they make you look like, eighteen instead of twelve. trust me, you'll thank me when your elected class president"