Though I'm probably not brave enough to actually wear the red lipstick out anywere.
Anyway, here is the SOOC shot I posted on Monday:
And here is the new and improved me:
To edit, I took the following steps:
1. First I adjusted in RAW. I cropped the photo and then, since Ashley taught us about noise last week, I focused on noise reduction. To do so, I zoomed 100% in on the photo so I could properly see the effect of the action and get it just right. I had a difficult time with my hair. I reduced the noise, but then it made my hair blurry. Later, I sharpened my hair, created a layer mask, and brushed the sharpening off everything but my hair. That made my hair noisy again. Grr!! Anyway, I think I just messed with it too much; sometimes you should just leave stuff alone. Moving on...
2. Next I opened it up and ran a high pass filter and set it to a soft light blend mode, left at 100% opacity.
3. Last, I ran Coffeeshop's Perfect Portrait. I hid all layers but white whites (which I painted over the whites of my eyes), eye define, skin smoothing, and vignette.
That is how I edited it. Now I want to share some tips for using your timer for self-portraits. I got several comments on my SOOC shots concerning focus when using your timer. It is difficult to focus properly when you shoot self-portraits because, well, you aren't in front of the camera to set the focus!
(Disclaimer: This is amateur advice; there may be a far easier way to do this!)
The most important thing I can say is that you need to use manual focus. If your camera is like mine, you arm the timer by pushing down on the shutter. If you are using Auto-Focus, your camera will want to re-focus every single time you press the shutter to start the timer.
Secondly, you will need a stand-in to help with your focus. I used my daughter for part of the time because she is about my height, so I just sat her down where I knew I would be sitting, focused, armed the timer, and then shoved her out of the way (gently, of course). But I don't think I need to tell you that daughters tire of being stand-ins. So you need another option. We happen to have two tripods, which worked beautifully since I could adjust the height of the tripod and set it down right where I would be...Voila! A very skinny, metal me. Then I could just focus on the tripod and move it out of the way as I took my seat. Again, it is so much easier if you use manual focus because you don't have to keep re-positioning your stand-in so you can re-focus until you get the shot right.
One final tip: get a remote! My sweet husband ordered one from Amazon for me, and I just received it yesterday. Haven't used it yet with my timer, but I know it will make things so much easier. And it was cheap (I think he picked it up for somewhere around $5.00).
So, anyway, that's my editing, and those are my tips. And there I am for the whole world to see. Did I mention I hate pictures of me? I was fun to edit, however!