Recently I was asked to send a copy of my best image out for a promotional piece. This is one of the harder questions you can ask of a portrait photographer, we (or at least I) tend to fall in love with at least one image from every shoot we do. However, there are definitely some favorites in my body of work, and they often tend to be the more creatively styled shoots that I do.
The piece will be used to highlight why someone would hire me to photograph them in Paris in April of 2016. Or at least entice them to want to look more at the rest of work to decide if having a photo shoot with me would be worth the investment to be fly to Paris and have me photograph them! So after a look at the portfolio on my website, I settled on an image and went to my editing program to have a final look. While there, I noticed that there were other images I had taken from that particular shoot that I had passed over at the time. However, with some time and distance from them, a saw some new potential. So I pulled together a new image from the old work and thought I would share that and the editing process I took to get there in case you were curious how an image like this ends up an image like this!
Starting at the top left with the unedited image, you can see I felt that the hand was a little large. Because I was using a 50mm lens, there was some distortion on the edge of the frame that made her hand appear larger than it is. I could simply remove it, but I didn't like leaving her armless, it definitely looked off! Following to the right, you'll see the image that I borrowed and arm from and then added one frame over to the right. I also felt like a crown of sorts was forming around her head with the foliage, so I added some more red flowers (also borrowed from another image) and layered more on. And I thought the head tilt would look more "regal" to fit with the crown of flowers by rotating it to the left.
On the bottom row, I went through color changes to warm up her skin tone and began layering on textures. I felt the glare of the lights in the water was drawing the eye away from my beautiful subject, so I also toned that down, and lastly I added on another 4-5 textures until I felt it was complete. Here is the final image, let me know what you think!
And if you're interested in booking your own photo shoot with me in Paris, please reach out for more details!
The final image:
And the original image being used for the purposes I mentioned at the top can be found here:
Photographer/Retouching: Tammy Zurak | Z Photog Studio
Model: Cassie Waldrop