The desert, the sun and the model…

By Oleg Ti,   January 28, 2013,   Views: 6530,   Comments:

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessingAnd ...and the Profoto Acute 600 battery pack and me too! Here you can see the final picture that I got after several steps of retouching!

But at first, about the preconditions., I got a nice opportunity to take pictures in a real desert when I arrived to in Dubai for several days this year. With real camels, high dunes, torrid sandsand, and the hot hot hot hot sun! We had just 2-3 hours for the shooting and I had to work very fast and effectively! Using a Profoto Acute 600 battery pack, I got “like-the-sun” very hard light with an umbrella reflector that directed exactly on the model.

Lighting: Profoto Acute 600 with open umbrella reflector
Camera: Canon 5D Mark II
Lens: Canon 24-105 4.0 IS
Focal length: 24 mm
Shutter: 1/200 sec
Aperture: f/22
ISO 100

But The imageit is made and now needs retouching…

This is the last picture of several images with the model lying on the sand, out of her power to go further. I wanted to get very dramatic style of picture where you couldn’t understand what kind of weather and time surrounds the model. I wanted to get very saturated colors, with unnatural tints that would make that the pictures more fantastic, dramaticdramatic, and overrealsurreal!


Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing

You can see the original RAW without changing any settings. You see that the picture is not low contrast, it's very flat and not interesting. Of course you never use RAW file with original settings so letslet's do the first step of retouching:


At first I got the main image with changing settind settings in RAW converter. You can see what settings I have used:
- I thought that slightyslightly green tint would be great for this picture and moved the tint to left,
- I dramatically increased the contrasty of the image.  Up to 100 points, the highest level I could get. ,
- To make it more contrast, I increased the highlights and decreased shadows in curves,.
- To get more informative information in the shadows, I changed the Fill Light to 40 points, the middle level of this setting.
- A and slightly climbed increased the Clarity.
So here is the image I got (Raw1 layer):

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I made a few more images with my RAW converter to get different contrast, brightness and skin color. For example, this one was made to get more bright sand. I changed the exposure in RAW converter and got this image (Raw 2 layer, below):

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing


This one to get natural color of the modelmodel’s skin. Just changed Color Temperature and Tint to get this image (Raw 3 layer):

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing


And this image to remove overexposed areas of model skin moving Exposure to more left position in RAW converter. (Raw 4 layer, below):

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing



Then I collected all these images in one Photoshop project . And created masks for every layer, filled it with black and pointed necessary areas I that needed to be seen with white brush .  Aand added one addition layer Raw 3 with 30% opacity to make whole picture more warm and natural. See it below:

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing 


Having flattened all this these layers into one, I got this picture:



It needed to be liquified and I did it. You can see changing on the model’s legs on the picture below:



Then I made sand around the model more bright just using curves and mask pointing the areas I that needed to be brighter with white brush. Here it is:



The next step is the color management. I added layer of solid color and changed Blending mode to Soft Light. You see the picture hads got blue tint.

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More radical management I made with new Solid Color Layer with Lighten Blending Mode. You see that the shadows got very bright blue color.

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The next step was to make some parts of sand brighter. Just with curves and mask.



And the Last step is to make the whole picture more contrasted and bright! Here it is! Done!

Good Luck!

Oleg Tityaev Desert Sun Model postprocessing

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