The Retouching Checklist


A Guide to Retouching with Links Tutorials

I’ve created this list, and by created I mean borrowed many of the questions from Scott Kelby’s book on retouching, to act as a complete guide to retouching people.

Currently the list is a work in progress but as I prepare more and more tutorials I’ll include the links to the relevant problems they fix. The idea is as I/you identify problems working through the list a tutorial addressing that problem is a mere click away.  Enjoy!

Faces

  1. Are there red veins in the eyes?
  2. Whites of the eyes should be white, but not overly white.
  3. Is there good contrast in the eyes?
  4. Do you see catch lights in the eyes?
    1. Do you need to enhance or add a main catch light?
    2. Do you need a kicker or fill catch?
  5. Do the irises need brightening?
  6. Does the color of the irises need to be changed or enhanced?
  7. Darken the circle around the iris.
  8. Sharpen the eyes.
  9. Are both eyes symmetrical?
  10. Do the eyes need to be larger?
  11. Are both eyelids open enough?
  12. Check eyelashes (top & bottom).
  13. Are the eyebrows dark enough?
  14. Do the eyebrows need filling in?
  15. Trim any extra eyebrow hairs away.
  16. Check the shape of the eyebrows.
    1. Are the eyebrows symmetrical?
    2. Does the nose need to be smaller?
    3. Do the cheeks need to be tucked in?
    4. Check the size of the ears.

Skin

  1. Remove any blemishes.
  2. Remove or reduce moles or individual freckles.
  3. Remove or reduce wrinkles.
  4. Remove dark circles under eyes.
  5. Remove or reduce smile lines.
  6. Reduce any hot spots.
  7. Is the skin tone consistent?
  8. Does the skin color of the face match the rest of the body?
  9. Repair blotchy skin.
  10. Does the skin need smoothing?
  11. Does the skin need additional makeup applied?
  12. Add dodging and burning to sculpt the face.
  13. Are the hands, elbows, knees, or feet too red?
  14. Remove veins in the arms, wrists, hands, and feet.

Mouth Lips

  1. Remove any blemishes.
  2. Remove or reduce moles or individual freckles.
  3. Remove or reduce wrinkles.
  4. Remove dark circles under eyes.
  5. Remove or reduce smile lines.
  6. Reduce any hot spots.
  7. Is the skin tone consistent?
  8. Does the skin color of the face match the rest of the body?
  9. Repair blotchy skin.
  10. Does the skin need smoothing?
  11. Does the skin need additional makeup applied?
  12. Add dodging and burning to sculpt the face.
  13. Are the hands, elbows, knees, or feet too red?
  14. Remove veins in the arms, wrists, hands, and feet.

Hair

  1. Remove stray hairs.
  2. Remove strands that cross other hairs.
  3. Remove strands that appear over skin.
  4. Remove strands that cross over eyes and eyebrows.
  5. Fill any gaps in hair.
  6. Add highlights to hair.
  7. Change hair color.
  8. Darken part line.
  9. Fix roots.

Body

  1. Reduce any double chin or jowls.
  2. Does the subject need slimming?
  3. Reduce love handles.
  4. Trim arms or legs, if necessary.
  5. Do the legs need lengthening?
  6. Do the arms and legs appear symmetrical?
  7. Are there distracting arm­pit wrinkles or any pit fat that needs reducing?
  8. Enhance the abs, if visible.
  9. Smooth and straighten clothing.

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