Help/Frequently Asked Questions
Re: Retouching and Photoshop

Frequently Asked Retouching and Photoshop Questions

–Privacy – Can we keep my photos totally private?

Many of our clients want nothing more than to show their photos to the world! We shoot many models and entertainers, and others looking for great photos to promote themselves — on Social Media sites and on their private or business websites.

Our Portfolios and Social Media Posts are our very best advertising and marketing tools, and the images we create are of value to us. We always end up with great shots and we always would like to “show off” work that we are proud of. We pick our portfolio images carefully and would never put photos in our public portfolio that we feel would compromise our clients or their reputations — and we will check if in doubt…

However, that said, some of our best and most beautiful photos will never be seen by anyone except by the client.

We understand the need many have for privacy, especially when it comes to boudoir style of images, and that some of our clients, for a variety of reasons do not want *any* of the photos that we create of them to go on either LasVegasStudios.com or Christiné’s FotoLook.com websites or any of our Social Media pages, or to be made public in any way — no matter the content of the images.

For those that want their photos “Totally Private” we offer a “For Your Eyes Only” Session option.

So for those clients who do not want us to use any of their photos in our portfolio we require that they purchase the full Copyright to their photo sessions. Clients can purchase a “Full Ownership and Transfer of All Copyrights” option with their photo session. Copyright transfers the ownership and includes the possession of all existing image files including High Resolution files. Once we are notified that the client has received the files and has made a backup and no longer need us to do any production work on the photos or make any prints, we delete all files from our computers. The client will have the only copies of the photos.

–How soon can I get my photos?

Photo Proofs are normally ready 24 to 72 hours of the session, sometimes sooner, sometimes a day or two longer depending on our workload and the size of the session. The actual culling of the photos, and basic color, density and contrast adjustments as well as initial cropping will usually take longer than the session itself. Once finished the Photos will be posted online in a dedicated password protected gallery.

If you want the high resolution or web resolution digital files you can actually get them most likely the same day. If you want them retouched that will be an additional 2-3 days. Once you purchase and download the high resolution files you can take them and have them printed in any quality photo lab. Often you can get great results at Costco or Sams’ Club, however for the best color and print quality we recommend that we do the printing for you.

You can order prints from us right from your gallery. These prints are all done by our regular lab using our settings and they will be shipped shipped directly to you in 7-10 days

–Do you offer a guarantee on photos?

You will be able to preview in advance your photos on an iPad or from the camera back as we shoot them. If you see something you don’t like you need to tell us. We certainly guarantee all technical aspects of our work, and if there was a problem causing us not to get the shots you wanted we will do a reshoot, however we do not do refunds.

It is always important to communicate in advance of your shoot date by sending us samples of photos you like. That will help us tremendously in making sure you get the type of photos you want.
Will our photos of you be the best possible photos that you could ever do?
We hope so, but we can’t guarantee they will.

You also can’t judge the finished photos by looking at the proofs. Unretouched photos are not finished products. Retouching is almost always necessary to make everyone look their best and to apply special effects. Just Google celebrity retouches… and see “before and after retouching” of your favorite celebs. We will get great shots for sure, and with retouching we can eliminate most any problems areas.

We are skilled and talented and have been doing this for a long time. Our aesthetics and technical capabilities must be considered to be excellent… if you have chosen our work over the hundreds of other “photographers” available you must like our presentation and the images we create. We did every image on our site, and have done hundreds of other wonderful photoshoots that are not represented on the site.

The photos will still be of “you” — and if you don’t like “you”… there is not much we can do about that….and once again, “You can please some of the people all of the time, all the people some of the time, but you can’t please all the people all the time!” …but we will try.

 

–I want to do boudoir.. but my body has flaws!

We will still get great photos!

..and you can help! No body is perfect, and professional models learn quickly how to work with their strengths and weaknesses. Your selection of wardrobe is very important. If you are worried about your tummy, or stretch marks, love handles or what ever, select lingerie and clothing items that hide your middle, but still allow your other assets to shine.

Find wardrobe items that will “accentuate the positive and minimize the negative”.

Just use your common sense… if your upper arms are heavy and you don’t like it… find things with sleeves to cover the problems… hate your hands? Gloves can look very sexy… neck looking old?…maybe some high collars or chokers,… breasts aren’t where you want them to be?… find a pretty demi or open cup pushup bra or tops that will put them there. If you are a mommy with some extra souvenirs and have a loose stomach.. or bad stretch marks, look into waist cinchers, corsets, tops that can be buttoned or tied at the waist… Garter belts can often cover stretch marks in the lower abdomen and can make for very sexy looks with stockings and high heels… stockings can also cover spider veins. Long sleeves can cover skin that has been sun damaged. And..if you have bad cellulite in the thighs? Try mini skirts, or fishnet panty hose, or little fabric sarong type wraps that cover the offending areas.

When organizing wardrobe, Google is your friend. Just do searches for what you need,… sexy waist cinchers, push up bras,… fishnet bodysuits…, club wear, stripper clothes, leather, etc. what ever you want it is out there. With the Internet you can have great out fits delivered to your doorstep and most will package discreetly if asked! And remember for photos your outfits don’t need to look great just standing in front of the mirror… Move around in the outfits and  try different angles, and see what works the best. In your photos we find the angles and poses where they work the best….

Please be aware most images you will find on the Internet or in magazines are totally photoshopped and the color and contrast have been enhanced…. some photoshopped images are included in most of our packages and we offer fully edited and photoshopped images a la carte in all of our different photo sessions! 🙂

Click Here to see top models and high-end ads before and after! Good retouching and photoshop is an important part of the “magic”!

Retouching can fix most anything…. we can re-shape, reduce or eliminate, lines, sags, scars, dark circles, bumps and lumps and lengthen, and enhance or shorten and diminish… whatever you want. We can do as much or as little as you want in the retouching! Stretch marks disappear, bodies can get lifts, reductions, enlargements, slimming, tucks, you name it — with modern photographic tools and artistic capabilities, everything is possible.

Computerized retouching smoothes skin, reduces lines and imperfection and is included on ALL images at no additional cost.

–Will the free computerized retouch be enough for my photos?

If you are younger and fit it will probably be enough. Computerized retouching is included in all sessions at no additional cost. Computerized Retouching smoothes and adds a slight glow to the skin. It is probably sufficient for small prints and younger subjects, men, and children, where no heavy lines exist and reshaping is not required.

Computerized Retouching is not Photoshopping of an image. Photoshop is a very sophisticated and complicated software that requires skilled human interaction to make it work.

Computerized retouching is done by the computer alone… using specialized software that uses algorythms to smooth the skin areas while minimizing the degradation of the overal image. That is its sole purpose. This type of retouching is often satisfactory for younger subjects. It will minimize blemishes and lines evenly to all skin areas. It will add a velvety “soft focus” look to the images. The stronger the settings the more the lines will be removed, however the images will tend to appear more unnatural.

NOTE: Computer retouching will not change the shape or color of anything in the images. It cannot correct, straighten, thin, shrink, enlarge, lift, enhance, minimize, or totally eliminate lines, stretchmarks, heavy cellulite, birthmarks, moles etc. Photoshop in the hands of a skilled user is the only way to correct those issues.

 

–Will your lighting remove my cellulite?

Lighting can help or it can hurt.

Low contrast and soft, open frontal lighting helps minimize ALL flaws…. However like with TV lighting it also gives the illusion of adding weight to the subject. The nice thing about this type of lighting is, if the slightly heavier look is not an issue, is that our normal and included computerized retouching is often all that is needed.

On the other hand shadowy and dramatic side lighting is more slimming and brings out the overall shape and form — but it also shows more wrinkles and imperfections (like cellulite, wrinkles and lines).

If you want shots with high contrast shadowy side lighting, they will need Photoshop retouch work to get them looking really nice and smooth and flawless. All of our package sessions include some Photoshop retouched shots, and you can alway add more a la carte.

Photoshop retouching can eliminate all or most of those problems: the illusion of added weight from soft, open lighting, and the more prominence of lines, wrinkles and imperfections from shadowy side lighting.

Photoshop retouching is what really brings everything together and to perfection. A certain amount of retouching is needed on *everyone* to get a flawless look. Nobody (No Body) is perfect.

– How do I download the “Zip” file that contains my digital image files?

If we have uploaded your photos in a “Zip” file, you should have received a link in an email to the Zip file.

Web Resolution files should only take a few minutes to download.
High Resolution files will take 5 – 10 times longer.

For Windows:
1– Click on link and Save the zip file to your hard drive (possibly on your “Desktop”, or in “Downloads”, “Pictures” or “Photos” folder)
2– Right Click the file and select “Extract” and choose the location where you want them.
3– Go to that location and all the files will be there in a folder with the same name as the zip file.

For Mac:
1– Click on link and Save the zip file to your hard drive (possibly on your “Desktop”, or in “Downloads”, “Pictures” or “Photos” folder)
2– Double-click the zip file to unzip. Depending on your settings, downloaded files may automatically extract to a new folder. The original zip archive will be saved;
3– check for a folder with the same name as your zip file.  That is where your files will be.

– How much are your prints and other photo products?

We give you high-resolution files and printing rights so you can make your own prints, however, we do offer printing services as well. You can order prints of all types right from your galleries and have them delivered directly to you by UPS

The charge for a standard 8″x10″ photo is $5.99 and 4″x6″ prints are .99 each. Some print finishes and mountings are additional costs. Retouching is charged for the “first print” of an image only. Retouching costs vary depending on the amount of work to be done.

The cost of magazine quality hand retouching and image enhancements depends a lot on the subject, age, amount of skin showing, (either face or body) the skin condition, quality and how dramatic of a change is desired. The larger the final size of prints ordered will also enter into the retouching cost. An average magazine quality retouch cost is between $25 and $50 per image.

We also offer high-quality Photobooks and large display prints up to 40″ x 60″ in various types of finishes.

– What is the difference between the Custom and Economy Photo Book?

Both Photobooks have the same photography and retouch work (if  ordered), Both can make great gifts and are a perfect way to keep your personal photos, private,protected and in perfect condition for posterity.

Both books have custom layouts but only The Custom Book allows for double page “centerfold” styles of images with only the tiniest of split where the images merge together. This is a big advantage of the Custom Books as the wide split in the Economy book severely limits the photo layouts in the book.

The Custom Book, especially in the 12″ x 12″ or larger sizes with custom metallic covers look amazing – and it is a much more impressive presentation for the photos than the Economy book.

It is a heavy book with laminated die cut rounded corner pages, the photos are the pages, they are flush mounted and bound to a center core and there are no borders. They are available also in metallic paper for a beautiful silky pearlescent look and feel.

Photobooks are a very popular option for Special Events, Weddings, Boudoir, or Centerfold and other more intimate styles of photos that are to be both presented and viewed but can also be stored away from prying eyes… yet always readily available and looking beautiful.

The 12″x12″ Custom book opens to full double page spreads 12″x24″ in size, bigger than Playboy gatefolds and of a much better image quality.

– Do I need High Resolution image files?

We offer High Resolution image files on all sessions.

If you want to make your own prints larger than 5″x7″ and get excellent quality images you will need the High Resolution image files.

High Resolution files (AKA: Hi-Res, Hi Rez) are the largest size digital files available on the images. The actual size of the High Resolution files will vary depending on whether a image has been cropped. Our standard high resolution images will be High Quality JPEG image format with a minimum long side dimension of 2200 – 3000 pixels, and are processed at 300 ppi. They have the most detail and are a must for making larger prints. They are also good if you plan to do your own image retouching.

High Resolution files will give the best quality prints or printing on sizes from about 5″ x 7″ upward to 16″x20″ or larger.  Most people will NOT need the High Resolution files unless they want to do all of their own photographic printing and will want to order large prints, or will need the image for magazine ads, brochures, posters or other lithographic printing, however it never hurts to have them.

– Can I make my own prints and photobook?

Yes. Most of our sessions include High Resolution digital image files, which you need to do your own prints, books, posters etc.  You can easily make great quality prints 16″x20″ or larger.

 

– I am not sure what size or style of prints I should order…

The best size for prints is dictated by where they will be displayed. If you have a good home printer you can make your own prints from the your digital image files of good quality up to about 11″ x 14″. For sizes larger than that you will need to have them printed from higher resolution image files.

Framed Photographs – If you plan on displaying a photo in a standard frame size just keep in mind those normal sizes, or you may need to get a custom frame. If you don’t want a frame, photos mounted on a high density foam core board can be hung without framing. Framed prints should be mounted on mat board, styrene or in the case of prints larger that 11x14 on Gator foam core board for best stability, and matted if glass is used so the photo does not come in contact with the glass.

Photobooks are a great way to have your photos printed in an exciting combination of collages and large images. They can be ordered at 10″x10″ sizes or up to 16″x20″ in page sizes, and are often preferred for more personal styles of photos. The 12″ x 12″ and 11″ x 14″ books look amazing and allow for really large “centerfold” images, yet can be discreetly stored away and kept from prying eyes. Photobooks can be ordered HERE.

LARGE PRINTS – Most every image we produce is capable of making very large prints which can often, using special imaging techniques, be made into dramatic works of art. The Canvas Gallery Wraps take your photos and truly make them into fine art pieces.

The most important decision in deciding on the proper large print size is where the images will be displayed, how they fit into that space, and how far the viewer will normally be from the actual print.  If it will be in a hallway where the viewer will only be a foot or so away a 12 x18 is probably large enough… if you put a 40″x 60″ print there, it may be very dramatic but viewed at a distance of one foot you will not get the full effect… however if you will be viewing the same size image from 3 feet away or farther it would be fine.  If it is to be viewed from across a room larger Display Prints of sizes up to 40x60″ are recommended..

– retouching necessary?

Is retouching necessary? There is a reason celebrities have all their photos retouched. They look better that way.  Photographs, unlike moving images like in film or video, are a frozen instant in time. That one moment in time is there to look at over and over, and over again. The slightest imperfection, not normally noticed in real life, stares back at you every time you view the photos. Even if you are young, in great shape and have great skin, for perfect photos you will still look better in a properly retouched photo.  If you want a perfect photo you will always want something corrected.

“Perfection” really only exists with retouching.  As they say “What you look like in photos is all that really counts!”  The high quality digital cameras of today do not miss a thing. Small size images can possibly get away without it. If you are satisfied with the way the small images look and do not plan on printing or using the photos at a larger size you may not need retouching. Without retouching at large sizes you will see even the tiniest of blemishes

It is important to evaluate the retouching needs of the photos at the size they will be shown at. That may be 9″ x 12″ in a print portfolio or about 5″ x 7″ on a computer monitor for Internet display. If you zoom in and look at a high resolution file, full size on your computer screen you will see every little pore and the tiniest of imperfections of any photo.  No need for that.  You are probably seeing what the photo would look like if it was printed 2 x bigger than life size and if you were standing only 12″-18″ away from it. Photos are never viewed like that in real life. It is not practical to make a photo perfect at that size as it would take 2 to 3 times the work and time (and cost) to do them.

Most people in the world today know and understand that most all published photos are retouched… if you are one who thinks retouched photos are destroying society and making our kids have unrealistic expectations — you are out of touch. The youth of today know it is a bit of fantasy, and they more than anyone want to make sure their photos look just as great and have the same advantages as the super models and celebrities.

Computerized retouching is included on all images in all our sessions at no additional cost. Computerized Retouching is a computer application that uses special algorithms that smoothes and adds a soft glow to the skin. It is often sufficient for small prints and younger subjects, men, and children, where no heavy lines exist and reshaping is not required.

— What can I do with my photos without owning the Copyright

You have print rights for all images that we shoot of you. You can use any of the photos to market or advertise yourself and your personally owned business. You can publish them in their original format as we give them to you, anywhere and do anything with them EXCEPT give somebody else the rights to use them or use them to market anything except yourself or your personally owned business.

You can make prints from them, have them printed, and use them for all social media sites, personal websites, composites, portfolios or anything else providing it is for you or your personal business.

Read the Booking Terms for details.

–Why would I want to own the Copyright to my photos

There are many different reasons for wanting to own the Copyright and all of your image files.
— You want to have total ownership and control of your images for privacy or commercial reasons.Â
— Owning Copyright allows you to use the photos for any legal purpose, they are yours and you will own and possess all image files.
— You want to sell your photos as posters, prints.
— You want to give or sell the rights to your photos to a 3rd party for their commercial use.
— You are not a professional model, actor, entertainer, performer who could benefit from the exposure you would receive as part of our LasVegasStudios.com or Fotolook.com Portfolios, and you do not want us to use any of your photos in our portfolio. (We of course hope this is not the reason and would hope that those purchasing copyright for other reasons would still allow us to use a few approved images in our portfolios)

These are all things where Ownership of Copyright files are required.

–If LasVegasStudios.com owns the copyright can you sell or publish my photos?

We cannot sell or license your photos for publication to a third party for any reason without your permission, in the form of a legal model release.

It takes more than owning the copyright to sell the photos of a person. You must also have a model release from the subject of the photo. We cannot sell any photos without your written permission in the form of a model release.

The only allowable use by us is for our portfolio and ad or marketing use ( the same rights we give you). We do retain the right to use a few photos no wilder than Dancing with the Stars, for our business portfolios, promotion and marketing use. These uses are outlined in our Booking Terms which you acknowledge when you order your session.

–Can you explain “Copyright Ownership”, ” Releases”, “Transfers” and “Work for Hire” to me?

Under US and International Copyright Law, the ownership and copyright, and therefore all publication and reproduction rights to a photograph, belongs to the creator of the work (the photographer) and not the subject.

You must have a Work for Hire release or a Copyright Transfer, Copyright Release, or Printing Release from the creator of the photos for any commercial use or in many photo labs just to have them printed.

This is not just for us… this is ANY and ALL photographers, whether professional or amateur. Without a copyright release or transfer the subject does not own the photos or the rights to modify or change them in any way.

Copyright Ownership is needed when: the client/subject requires, or wants to have complete ownership of the copyright to the images with the complete and total control of the use of any images. It is usually for some kind of commercial use, or special privacy and or confidentiality reasons. If you do not own the copyright you do not own the photos.

We allow all clients printing rights to use the photos for their personal use and self-promotion include displaying the images on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Dating and Matchmaking Services, personally owned websites, etc.

However if you want to sell photos that we produce as a poster, or to advertise a product, or to give or sell to a 3rd party you will need to purchase the specific rights to use it(them) for that purpose or purchase the full copyright to the shoot.

In the case of Work for Hire, we produce the photos to the clients specifications and usually for commercial use and provide the client with DVD data discs of the final images in full high resolution format. The client has full ownership of the copyright and is free to do with the photos as they please. They can make all their own prints and reproduce or do with the photos as they please. We always reserve the right to use a few photos from the shoot, for our portfolios and in our advertising and marketing.

–How do I download the “Zip” file that contains my digital image files?

If we have uploaded your photos in a “Zip” file, you should have received a link in an email to the Zip file.

Web Resolution files should only take a few minutes to download.
High Resolution files will take 5 – 10 times longer.

For Windows:
1– Click on link and Save the zip file to your hard drive (possibly on your “Desktop”, or in “Downloads”, “Pictures” or “Photos” folder)
2– Right Click the file and select “Extract” and choose the location where you want them.
3– Go to that location and all the files will be there in a folder with the same name as the zip file.

For Mac:
1– Click on link and Save the zip file to your hard drive (possibly on your “Desktop”, or in “Downloads”, “Pictures” or “Photos” folder)
2– Double-click the zip file to unzip. Depending on your settings, downloaded files may automatically extract to a new folder. The original zip archive will be saved;
3– check for a folder with the same name as your zip file.  That is where your files will be.

–Can you make me look like Kim, Charlize, Angelina, Beyoncé? Rhianna? Sofia?…etc.?, etc.?)

If that is what you really want, we will do our best! 😉 However it will go a long way if you at least slightly resemble that person or a celebrity. 😉 Makeup and Hair is super important! Christiné is a great makeup artist and hair stylist, and a lot can be done photographically with the right lighting, best angles, and of course post-shoot retouching in Photoshop. With retouching we can re-shape, reduce or eliminate, lines, sags, scars, dark circles, bumps and lumps and lengthen, and enhance or shorten and diminish…if you want. We can do as much or as little as you want in the retouching! If you really want us to change everything about you, it is possible — however normally we will always try to retain your own basic facial features, figure and ethnicity. So no matter how much we copy a look or style — we think it should should still be you — just given the same advantages, tricks, and professional techniques normally only the celebrities receive.

–What are the retouching costs?

Retouching costs: what is included and what is additional

If your session includes High Resolution and Print rights you can have your retouching done by anyone, it does not have to be done by us. You can do it yourself or hire an outside retoucher.

Computerized retouching is included in all sessions on all images at no additional cost.

To help keep the retouching costs down, we normally use a flattering lighting and use a special software on all images. Computerized retouching software uses special algorithms that smooth and adds a slight glow to the skin. It is often sufficient for smaller prints and younger subjects, men, and children, where no heavy age lines exist and reshaping is not required. We normally use a light setting, however, upon request, we can do a stronger computerized retouching which can ultimately remove or minimize most all but the very deepest of lines.

Basic Photoshop work – $20 to $30 per image

Photoshop Retouching is at additional cost and is done using Photoshop in conjunction with other sophisticated image editing applications. Here we can do just about anything you could imagine.  Our basic Photoshop work includes softening or removal of light to moderate facial lines, minor body sculpting (simple slimming and enhancements) define jawline, light scar removal, soften or remove skin blemishes, small tattoos, mild/few stretch marks, smooth neck etc., removal of any visible lights or light stands, extend backgrounds or flooring if needed, as well as basic Black and White conversions.

The following Photoshop work will be subject to additional charges: $60 per hour

We charge $60 per hour for more complicated and time-consuming retouch work. Color or image changes on wardrobe, background, hair etc.; extreme or complicated body sculpting, large tattoo removal, alteration of client’s wardrobe items (addition or removal of items, straps, adornments, logos etc.), large number of stretch marks, skin blemishes, fat rolls, facial lines and wrinkles, head swapping, removal of braces, dental changes, mono and polychromatic, HDR or other specialty conversions, or any subjective revision requests on our original retouch work.

— All images are first brought to their best color and contrast levels. We believe that retouching should always maintain the character of the subject, and look “realistic” while still showing them in an “idealized” or “fantasized” manner… Retouching costs can vary considerably from image to image. This depends on the final print size desired for the images, the age of the subject, the size of the areas, the percentage of skin to be retouched in the image, the amount of retouching required, and whether body or facial re-contouring (thinning enhancing) is desired or needed and to what extent. Other items that can add to the cost are color changes, background changes,

Here are some approximate retouching costs various types of images of female subjects.

(Men normally around 25% less)
These rates are for retouching to a magazine cover standard – jpg or  .tif files — 8 1/2″ x 11″ at 300 ppi, capable of prints up to 20″x30″

  • –Headshot of a younger female subject needing cleanup of blemishes and lines – $20.00 ea.
  • –Headshot of a younger female subject needing full cleanup of all blemishes and lines with contouring and enhancements- $25.00 ea.
  • –Head and body shot of a younger female subject needing full cleanup of all blemishes and lines with contouring and enhancements- – $25.00 – $35.00 ea.
  • –Headshot of middle age female subject needing cleanup of blemishes and lines – $25.00 – 35.00 ea.
  • –Headshot of middle age female subject needing full cleanup of all blemishes and lines, with light contouring and enhancements- $35.00 – $40.00 ea.
  • –Head and body shot of middle age female subject needing full cleanup of all blemishes and lines, tattoos, with body contouring and enhancements- -$30.00 – $50.00 ea.

Nudes and Semi-Nudes (Retouched in “Playboy Style”)

  • –Headshot and full body nude or semi-nude of younger age female subject needing light cleanup of blemishes and lines – $20.00 – 30.00 ea.
  • –Headshot and full body nude of middle age female subject needing full cleanup of blemishes and lines with body contouring and enhancements- $30.00 – $40.00 ea.
  • –Headshot and full body nude of middle age female subject needing a large amount of cleanup of all blemishes, stretch marks, scars, tattoos, freckles, etc. as well as with body contouring, and “proportion enhancements”- -$35.00 – $60.00 ea.

Revisions on our Retouch work:

Any specific client requests, that were missed or any obvious mistakes made by us will, of course, be fixed and not be subject to any revision fee. Subjective revision requests are subject to a minimum $20 rework fee. We use our best judgment from our years of experience to give the photos a professional and flawless look. We do any specific work requested by the client as well as any obvious things we can do within the time allotted by the quoted price, to make our client’s images look the best we can.

Questions Re: Retouching and Photoshop we should add?

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