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12last
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


The biggest complaint I get from other professional photographers is that my highlights are too muddy. Or that overall the images are too muddy. And  I can't figure out what my deal is. I'm a human light meter. I follow "mostly" all the rules of photography. I'm the guy to ask about photography. But... once an image is brought up into photoshop, I'm a real dee dee dee. I NEVER like my finished images. I'm my worst critic. Would anyone be interested in allowing me to post some sooc images and giving me critique, and then critique my final image post production as well? I've never posted a thread on here so I guess it's time to have my cherry popped.
Jan 09 13 09:52 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Garry k
Posts: 26,727
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


well for one thing I am not a fan of those black picture frames
Jan 09 13 09:55 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


I'm talking about photography here.
Jan 09 13 10:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
RenaBeana
Posts: 1,104
Lillington, North Carolina, US


Well from a models pov I think your pictures are great....I have seen some terrible photographers and some really good ones....and when it comes to your pictures you woud be up there with the best. I like photographers who can keep it simple yet capture great pictures and togs who know how to edit but dont over do it to try and make their pictures great. If I was you I wouldnt be too hard on yourself because a lot of ppl on here (if thats the photographers your talking about) are very anal but yet have no room to be. I posted some shots from my first nude shoot to get some opinions and was shocked when I got some smart allic coments and judging of my body especially when their ports were worse than mine! So keep your head up and keep doing what ur doing!
Jan 09 13 10:07 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Good Egg Productions
Posts: 15,065
Orlando, Florida, US


http://photos.modelmayhem.com/photos/100627/16/4c27d8dd10cba_m.jpg

Holy Plastic Model, Batman.

All of your shots appear to be lit in a very controlled fashion, but I'm going to agree with you that I don't like your retouching. Hard to tell if this is a woman or a CGI render.

Feel free to post an OOC image. I'm going to posit that I'll like it better than your finished work.
Jan 09 13 10:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Daniel Pierce
Posts: 629
Burbank, California, US


So far I can't see it (I really like your work. Works great for the commercial genre.) but do you do anything with your blacks and greys in photoshop?

What is the extent of your editing? Shadows, Curves, ect...
Jan 09 13 10:19 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Chronos Creations
Posts: 353
Benidorm, Valencia, Spain


I think some of your pics are retouched a bit too much, but that is a style in itself, just not the style I go for. But I don't understand the "Muddy" comment... Maybe the colours are too harsh for some?
Jan 09 13 10:25 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
R Michael Walker
Posts: 11,957
Costa Mesa, California, US


I don't think they look muddy at all. And I like the black frame as it helps separate it from the page. But the skin is way to over retouched for my likings.
Jan 09 13 10:28 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Sonn
Posts: 337
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


First thing i noticed your models are almost all looking in the same direction with their head on the same angle.

The images are oversaturated for my tastes.

The backgrounds in alot of shots are competing for attention although it looks like on the newer ones this is improving and more focus on the model.

I think a bit of colour grading wouldnt hurt either.

The potential is there though.
Jan 09 13 10:29 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Zack Zoll
Posts: 2,266
Glens Falls, New York, US


I'm going to talk about stuff you didn't ask about.  Like the black frames, which I also don't like.

They're all WAY too heavily airbrushed.  The girl at the end is missing all the wrinkles that would naturally occur when one bends one's arm or fingers, and it looks really weird.  Like, creepy.

The only "muddy" image is the girl with the bass guitar.

Most likely, the word 'muddy' is misused.  The models are airbrushed enough that they have lost most of the highlights and shadows on their skin, making them look very midtone-y.  Since 'muddy' typically refers to too many midtones (even in music), they might have been referring to the skin, and not the overall look.

It's also possible that they were viewing the images on a monitor with lower contrast than my own.  Or if you made prints, perhaps you didn't soft proof them first; many papers require raising the contrast to almost silly levels in order to print an image 'correctly'.

In any case, I think the correct answer is the one that you don't want to hear.
Jan 09 13 10:33 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


Ok great! So how do I post an image into this thing sooc?
Jan 10 13 05:39 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Square Jaw Photography
Posts: 345
Odenton, Maryland, US


Yeah, I gotta agree with all the others. Way too much post-production airbrushing. I smooth out flaws and minor skin imperfections usually, or if a model cakes on too much make-up I smooth it out as well. But I like natural skin texture to show through as well as it can.

I don't have too much of an issue with the black frames, but I think a basic watermark would serve you better.
Jan 10 13 05:57 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


Square Jaw Photography wrote:
Yeah, I gotta agree with all the others. Way too much post-production airbrushing. I smooth out flaws and minor skin imperfections usually, or if a model cakes on too much make-up I smooth it out as well. But I like natural skin texture to show through as well as it can.

I don't have too much of an issue with the black frames, but I think a basic watermark would serve you better.

alright, do I need to use photobucket or something like that to put some pictures in here?

Jan 10 13 06:02 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Aaron Lewis Photography
Posts: 5,078
Catskill, New York, US


Yeah there's a plastic feel to everything. Like you're over  processing them somehow. They're very saturated as well.
Jan 10 13 06:04 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Square Jaw Photography
Posts: 345
Odenton, Maryland, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:

alright, do I need to use photobucket or something like that to put some pictures in here?

You mean here in this forum? Actually, I'm not too sure about that either. LOL. I usually just link it from a URL. Anyone else no the answer to this?

Jan 10 13 06:08 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Aaron Lewis Photography
Posts: 5,078
Catskill, New York, US


Square Jaw Photography wrote:

You mean here in this forum? Actually, I'm not too sure about that either. LOL. I usually just link it from a URL. Anyone else no the answer to this?

Without being a premium member they can't post inline images in the thread so yes. Post a link to each image somewhere on the web whether it be photobucket or something else.

Jan 10 13 06:14 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Square Jaw Photography
Posts: 345
Odenton, Maryland, US


Aaron Lewis Photography wrote:

Without being a premium member they can't post inline images in the thread so yes. Post a link to each image somewhere on the web whether it be photobucket or something else.

LOL. Well I AM a premium member. Any chance you could enlighten me?

Jan 10 13 06:16 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Aaron Lewis Photography
Posts: 5,078
Catskill, New York, US


Square Jaw Photography wrote:
LOL. Well I AM a premium member. Any chance you could enlighten me?

Actually, no. I'm sorry but since I'm not, I've never actually seen the controls to do that. I know on other boards, while your composing a post or reply there are additional tools near the "reply" button? A small toolbar similar to what you'd see in Word maybe. One of the buttons on that toolbar allows you to put an image inline.

I've never seen it on MM because I'm not a premium member so I can't say for sure.

Or, maybe I'm totally wrong and just don't know what I'm doing. But I'm pretty sure that's not the case.

Jan 10 13 06:23 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/DSC_0066_zps039996a5.jpg

This work?
Jan 10 13 06:30 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


From a model's perspective, while the shots are nice, there is far to much post work done on the models. They look fake, like dolls. One of the things I always ask of a photographer is "please don't change how I look, just edit the tiny imperfections". By imperfections I mean dark under-eye circles, the cactus scratch on my arm, maybe a scratch from my cats. Post work shouldn't change the entire appearance of the model but rather enhance it.

The black border...yeah it's weird but that's the least of my concerns, you should work on lighter post work. What do you use for it btw? LightRoom, CS5/CS6?
Jan 10 13 06:31 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
This work?

Yes it worked and I have to say that image doesn't need much post to it. Maybe a filter, some minor corrections on her skin (legs) and you're done. There isn't a need to edit that much. It's a lovely shot.

Jan 10 13 06:33 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/tesy_zps1068f01d.jpg

This is my normal 5 min retouch.  I white balance using a grey card before every shoot. So my images are white or grey balanced if you want to call it that. I haven't changed or messed with the color or saturation. Just a curve.  insight would be greatly appreciated. smile
Jan 10 13 06:38 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
This is my normal 5 min retouch.  I white balance using a grey card before every shoot. So my images are white or grey balanced if you want to call it that. I haven't changed or messed with the color or saturation. Just a curve.  insight would be greatly appreciated. smile

I think it's editing like this that is too extreme

http://photos.modelmayhem.com/photos/10 … d10cba.jpg

She just looks fake.

Jan 10 13 06:42 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Caveman Creations
Posts: 580
Fort Worth, Texas, US


[Edit] Guess you figured it out!
Jan 10 13 06:45 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/test_zpsba9fa478.jpg
Jan 10 13 06:47 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
rbphotos
Posts: 36
Las Vegas, Nevada, US


So far I like this look. The only thing I would change is the crop. Get it tighter around the Model so she stands out more. just my thought.
Jan 10 13 06:47 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


I agree.  But I'm still concerned with what the heck muddy means? lol  Would it be inappropriate to post the site of someone's work who I absolutely love and would pay big bucks to learn how to do?
Jan 10 13 06:52 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Aaron Lewis Photography
Posts: 5,078
Catskill, New York, US


*SHRUG* OK I'm confused. Please shed some light on how to post inline images.
Jan 10 13 06:56 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Caveman Creations
Posts: 580
Fort Worth, Texas, US


I think you may be putting a bit too much emphasis on this word "Muddy". I agree with what was said above, it was probably misused.

These edits that you have in here, are quite a bit better, although, I'm not on my calibrated monitors. You are a good photographer, Your framing is nice, your exposures are not all over the place, but whatever you were doing to the llamas' skin was too much. Now, these shots you have in here, look quite a bit better. From what I can tell.

Are you using strobes? Continuous? What ISO are you normally at? When using a high ISO, and then attempting the "Noise Reduction" tools, you can get some very "detail-less" and plastic-y skin.
Jan 10 13 07:00 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
rbphotos
Posts: 36
Las Vegas, Nevada, US


If you can not find it on U tube its just a myth.. You can find the edits on ther and how to do them. But if you like your photos thats all you need.
Jan 10 13 07:04 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


I can't see the question anymore as I type! lol  That's silly.  But I think I can answer pretty much what you are asking. Studio. 5 ft octabox, always using strip lights for hair and filling in the shadow side of the face slightly using either a reflector or a fill light behind me just filling in shadows. I follow most the rules. 100 ISO, 125-200th shutter in studio, F4, sometimes F5.6 if I'm zoomed in to the face. I get a lot of one eye out of focus shots with F4.  Nikon D800, 70-200 VR.  Use grey cards, though haven't decided if I like white or grey better. Still looking for different grey card actually. Ed Pierce Target makes it too cool using the white and too warm using the grey.

I never broad light a broad and never short light a midget. JK Sometimes I will. smile
I project my images right after the sale. Do a small adjustment, pop them into Proselect and make my money the same day I shoot. My lighting is NEVER all over the place. That takes too much work to be that bad. lol

If I shoot everything the same way, I figure I should have a preset that would make every image look better right off the bat just to show the clients.  Anyone have any tips on that?  I basically pop the curves a little, then using levels make sure I don't clip my highlights or shadows, soften the skin a little and then show the clients that. 

Ready, set, go!
Jan 10 13 07:09 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio 317 Photography
Posts: 66
Indianapolis, Indiana, US


By the way if you are looking for that picture in my profile that everyone keeps bashing, I deleted it. smile  Thanks for the critique.  See I don't take it the wrong way.  If everyone says it's trash, then that is where it goes. Thanks guys!
Jan 10 13 07:12 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
The Aperture Studio
Posts: 95
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Your photographs are all good. I see nothing to worry about, although, I am not a big fan of those black frames.
Jan 10 13 07:17 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Caveman Creations
Posts: 580
Fort Worth, Texas, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
I can't see the question anymore as I type! lol  That's silly.  But I think I can answer pretty much what you are asking. Studio. 5 ft octabox, always using strip lights for hair and filling in the shadow side of the face slightly using either a reflector or a fill light behind me just filling in shadows. I follow most the rules. 100 ISO, 125-200th shutter in studio, F4, sometimes F5.6 if I'm zoomed in to the face. I get a lot of one eye out of focus shots with F4.  Nikon D800, 70-200 VR.  Use grey cards, though haven't decided if I like white or grey better. Still looking for different grey card actually. Ed Pierce Target makes it too cool using the white and too warm using the grey.

I never broad light a broad and never short light a midget. JK Sometimes I will. smile
I project my images right after the sale. Do a small adjustment, pop them into Proselect and make my money the same day I shoot. My lighting is NEVER all over the place. That takes too much work to be that bad. lol

If I shoot everything the same way, I figure I should have a preset that would make every image look better right off the bat just to show the clients.  Anyone have any tips on that?  I basically pop the curves a little, then using levels make sure I don't clip my highlights or shadows, soften the skin a little and then show the clients that. 

Ready, set, go!

To see the "Question" while you type, the little button at the bottom right hand corner that says, "Quote" will put that text in you next message, like this ^^^.

If your clients are happy, then there is no problem. If you try to please everyone, you will make no one happy. You seem to have a process down, and if it's making you money, go with it. Editing goes in with style, and if that's your style, and it's unique to you, and marketable, do it. Pay no attention to what others say. When it becomes a problem, or your clients complain about it, that's when attention is needed. Do what makes you money, and make it RAIN BENJIES on your critics!

Jan 10 13 07:30 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
KA Style
Posts: 1,549
Syracuse, New York, US


Aaron Lewis Photography wrote:
*SHRUG* OK I'm confused. Please shed some light on how to post inline images.

Under the picture in your profile is a link code to post in the MM forum.



OP just forget the word muddy! I dont see muddy as well as others have said the same so just forget about it. smile I think you're just a bit heavy handed on the skin and saturation thats all. IMO Id also get rid of the black box frame.

Jan 10 13 07:39 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Oria Studios
Posts: 49
DEPTFORD, New Jersey, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/test_zpsba9fa478.jpg

I can see in the first image why it's muddy. Muddy is all about tonality and the tones are a bit muted and a bit uniform the second image is much improved giving the image a bit more depth.

Jan 10 13 07:42 am  Link  Quote 
Model
NicoleNudes
Posts: 3,784
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/tesy_zps1068f01d.jpg

This is my normal 5 min retouch.  I white balance using a grey card before every shoot. So my images are white or grey balanced if you want to call it that. I haven't changed or messed with the color or saturation. Just a curve.  insight would be greatly appreciated. smile

I honestly don't see anything blatantly wrong with this photo. I actually kinda like it.
My only small nitpicking thing would be her toenails. The model should have either taken off that colour of polish or changed it to something that would complement the yellow dress. Either way, that's not really your fault.

It just helps when you notice small things like that ahead of time so things like that don't happen in the future.

Jan 10 13 07:43 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Zack Zoll
Posts: 2,266
Glens Falls, New York, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
http://i1107.photobucket.com/albums/h393/studio317/tesy_zps1068f01d.jpg

This is my normal 5 min retouch.  I white balance using a grey card before every shoot. So my images are white or grey balanced if you want to call it that. I haven't changed or messed with the color or saturation. Just a curve.  insight would be greatly appreciated. smile

Because she's so tanned, balancing with a "neutral" grey will make her look orange.  I'm assuming she's orange anyway ... my monitor is a little bright and contrasty, but I'm pretty sure colours are accurate.  At the very least, it's accurate in the sRGB colour space.

Adding a very small amount of blue will fix that.  You'll probably want to do it using curves, so that the midtones are affected more than the rest of the image.

I strongly prefer your unprocessed image.  If it were me, I would remove the red spots on her legs, slightly reduce (but not remove) the fold in her left elbow and below her nose, and then leave it as is.  There may be some facial blemishes on the file that can't be seen at this resolution that need to go, but I don't see anything else.

You've done a very good job of taking a beautiful image in-camera, and getting it right the first time.  Now stop fucking with it smile

Jan 10 13 09:07 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Good Egg Productions
Posts: 15,065
Orlando, Florida, US


Studio 317 Photography wrote:
The biggest complaint I get from other professional photographers is that my highlights are too muddy. Or that overall the images are too muddy. And  I can't figure out what my deal is. I'm a human light meter. I follow "mostly" all the rules of photography. I'm the guy to ask about photography. But... once an image is brought up into photoshop, I'm a real dee dee dee. I NEVER like my finished images. I'm my worst critic. Would anyone be interested in allowing me to post some sooc images and giving me critique, and then critique my final image post production as well? I've never posted a thread on here so I guess it's time to have my cherry popped.

Since these other professional photographers are the ones talking about your "muddy" images, and the professional photographers here don't have any idea what the other professional photographers are talking about, perhaps you should ask the other professional photographers just what the hell they're talking about.

Or maybe they're feeling threatened by the quality of your work and are looking to throw a red herring into your mind to second guess your product.

Your pictures aren't muddy.  They're saturated, warm, bright and sharp.  Everything that good glamour should be.

Ask the people criticizing you to be specific.

Jan 10 13 10:50 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
730372
Posts: 1,952
Abbeville, Alabama, US


Good Egg Productions wrote:
Since these other professional photographers are the ones talking about your "muddy" images, and the professional photographers here don't have any idea what the other professional photographers are talking about, perhaps you should ask the other professional photographers just what the hell they're talking about.

Or maybe they're feeling threatened by the quality of your work and are looking to throw a red herring into your mind to second guess your product.

Your pictures aren't muddy.  They're saturated, warm, bright and sharp.  Everything that good glamour should be.

Ask the people criticizing you to be specific.

+1.

What they're telling you makes little, if any, sense.

Jan 10 13 11:03 am  Link  Quote 
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