IAM Photo Retouch wrote:
As far as the photo needing retouching, I'm sure you are right and that it does not need it. I only used this image for practice. And it was put up on this forum for that very reason.
In the end, that can never be an excuse. If you really think an image does not need any retouching, then dont retouch it
Really, if you watch a gazillion high end retouching portfolio's (also from photographers who offer retouching) you'll see that some have very minor changes while others are more drastic..even with very similar images. The endresult may look similar but nothing too much has been done, only what was necessary.
Try to look at it in this way, ask yourself these questions:
What's the focus of the image?
What's distracting from this focus?
How can I remove/reduce the distraction while keeping the integrity
of the image?
Then learn the techniques that fit best with the particular 'problems'.
The 'best' technique is often a mix of quality, control and speed. Many good posts
here on mm, blogs and youtube channels (like natalia's or earlier mentioned Johannes) and retouchpro.com
All reasoned from a 'basic' retouching perspective. Fashion, beauty, not really composites, manipulations etc.
In this image you could start with make-up, background and 'shaping' (contouring/carving) her neck and face for some depth.
Look at your before/after once in a while, during retouching. You're more likely to catch things you missed or overdid.