Example of Image Extension for Magazine Double-Page Spread Layout

Task: Photo Extension & Color Correction

As the saying goes. “ If I had a dime for every....”(fill in the blank for your occupation) I’d be a rich woman.” In magazine retouching, it’s photo extensions. I’ve chosen to begin the magazine section with this example because skillful photo extension is an important ability for magazine retouching work. Often it’s just a small area that needs to be extended so the image fits the proportions of the layout and/or provides the 1/8’’ bleed needed to meet prepress requirements. Other times, the magazine layout is completely dependent on the photo extension.

In this example the extension was an key component of the page design. The art director came up with a clever way to make a square image into a double-page spread. My job was to be sure the extension retained the texture of the wall and to create light and shade that looked natural and realistic.

Note: The magazine pages shown here is a scan of the spread and does not represent the actual color that appeared in the magazine.

Client: People Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Retouching for Magazine Cover of Fortune Small Business

Task: Remove Red Color Cast, Add Extension on Left

Correcting flesh tones that are often too red is another required skill for magazine retouching work. When the project is for a cover, it makes a routine color correction extra special. This image required reducing the red in both the flesh tones and the silver of the handlebars. The blue cast in the black tones was corrected as well, and an extension was added to the left in order to format the photo to the magazine’s proportions.

Note: The cover photo shown here is a scan of the final cover; not the actual file that was used on press.

Client: Fortune Small Business Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Retouching Instructions for Magazine Cover; Retouching by Digitial Imaging Specialist Martha DiMeo

Task: Execute Retouching Instructions

Interpretation of retouching instructions is another key requirement for magazine cover retouching and digital imaging work. The retouching instructions for this magazine cover came to me as a B&W copier print-out. The directions were three-fold: removal of elements in the background that made the text difficult to read, minor portrait retouching, and color correction to the suit and flesh tones.

Client: Time, Inc

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Retouching a Double-Page Spread for Magazine Layout

Task: Create Double-Page Spread Formatted to Magazine Layout
         Retouch & Color Correct Photo

As mentioned in the Tom Hanks / People magazine spread, skillful creation of extensions is a prerequisite for magazine digital imaging work.

In this example the designer wanted a double-page spread as the opening photo for the Tables story in Wedding Style magazine–but if at all possible, did not want to resort to filling in the right side of the layout with a colored bar. The solution was to create a corner in the room.

After the designer reviewed (and loved!) this solution for the extension, I was provided with a close approximation of the position of headline and copy. This prompted me to darken that area of the photograph to subdue the busy background and make the text readable.

Time and cost benefits result from working out the details of text placement at this point in the design process rather then at the page-proofing stage. First, it saves precious time when the deadline is looming and there is no time for re-dos. Second, additional costs are not incurred for a second round of Photoshop work or another page proof.

Client: Wedding Style Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Photo Extension for Magazine Spread

Task: Seamlessly Compose Three Photos Into One, Add Extension on Left

Three portraits, shot individually needed to be combined into one photo to appear as if the three subjects were photographed together. The “Before” an FPO (for placement only) of the layout was provided as a guide for exact positioning of the subjects.

Success meant accomplishing three tasks: Maintaining correct proportion by adjusting the relative size of each person, neutralizing the color cast in each photo for the background and uniform color to appear consistent, and smoothly transitioning the tonality of the floor and cast shadows.

Client: Fortune Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Photo Extension Across Gutter for Double-Page Spread

Task: Photo Extension Across Gutter for Double-Page Spread

Successful magazine retouching work is invisible to the viewer. In this example the art director wanted the layout for this opening spread to consist of just two photographs, used large, with full-bleed on all sides. The right-hand photo extended across the gutter and onto the left-hand side of the spread. My task was to extend the décor of the runway stage and make it appear as if it existed that way in reality.

Along with creating the extension of the runway backdrop, careful attention was given to the lighting and resulting cast shadows on the floor. The hand of the retoucher might be detected if all were not smoothly blended. That being said, if you hadn’t seen the “Before” would you have known anything was done to this image?

Client: Wedding Style Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Portrait & Beauty Retouching Before and After

Task: Portrait & Beauty Retouching

Exquisitely photographed and styled, this photograph required just a bit of delicate image enhancement to turn it into the cover for the international edition of Wedding Style magazine.

The first step was to extend the sides to format the photo to the proportion of the magazine. I then turned my attention to the beauty retouching tasks. I started with the eyes, the most critical aspect of portrait retouching work. I removed the dark circles and brightened the whites of the eyes. This helped to bring focus to the face. Next, the stray hairs on the up-do were removed. Finally, the glare on the background was reduced and the left-side and floor were darkened.

After reviewing a proof with the masthead and copy in place, the decision was made to publish the cover as a four-color black & white image as shown in the inset photo.

Client: Wedding Style Magazine, International Edition

Copyright Belongs to Respective Image Owners

Portrait Retouching, Magazine Cover Before and After

Task: Magazine Cover Retouching

Unlike the previous cover, the decision at the outset was to run the cover photograph as a black & white image. Extensive tonal manipulation was done to create a full tonal range, four-color black & white with pleasing contrast. The model retouching work focused on re-shaping and smoothing the hair on both models.

Client: Wedding Style Magazine, New England Edition

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Retouching for Magazine Cover Before and After

Kudos Received: Martha DiMeo won the grand prize in the Adobe sponsored Photoshop contest titled “How Photoshop Saved the Day” for the work done of this image.

The Scenario: It’s ten days before the presses are scheduled to roll; art director and editor are reviewing hundreds of images from a fashion shoot to find the perfect cover image; it’s not looking good until the art director discovers one grossly under-exposed frame among the outtakes; it’s the one he wants to turn into the magazine’s cover.

Nothing bonds the creative team, the editorial team, and the publisher like the above scenario. If I could save this image, we would avoid the stress, energy, effort, time, and expense of pulling together another photo shoot just days before all materials were due on press.

With some serious Photoshop work, the image was transformed and a cover was created. Photoshop certainly saved the day!

Client: Wedding Style Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Photo Editing for Magazine Layout-Before and After

Task: Create an Aesthetic Pleasing Runway Environment

Here’s an interesting challenge. The article is called “Bridal Runway”. But this particular fashion week many of the designers chose to forgo the runway and present their collections in a showroom environment instead. As a result, the art and editorial teams were faced with the challenge of pulling together a disparate collection of photographs that included showroom props, busy backgrounds, and other visual clutter. This was further complicated by poor lighting and audiences that overlapped models.

In my role as Production & Imaging Director for the magazine, I took the lead in directing the image manipulation work presenting the art director with a few approaches that would pull the images together and evoke a sense of a runway environment.

This example illustrates the superb results that can be achieved by removing distracting backgrounds and beautifully handling lighting and color. All is in service to the theme of the story.

Client: Wedding Style Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Magazine Retouching, Bridal Runaway Fashion Show -Before and After

Task: Turn a Cluttered Photograph Into an Opening Spread

Another example from the Bridal Runway feature article (see previous image for full story). In addition to the cluttered environment of the showroom, this photograph also suffered as a result of the photographer having a less than ideal vantage point from which to shoot; note the table in the foreground!

With the photo editing work completed, the image was now suitable for the opening spread of the article (as shown in insert photo).

Client: Wedding Style Magazine

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Color Retouching Ten 31 feature in Wedding Style Magazine -Before and After

Task: Color & Tonal Correctionmm

This photograph and the next were the opening images for an article that appeared in Wedding Style, New England about the Rhode Island based company, Ten31 Productions. The company specializes in living-art performances.

The color of both images required correction so that each was pleasing on its own, and as a pair would compliment one another. In this image the heavy blue color cast was removed, making the colors more pleasing neutral tones. The differentiation between similar colors was restored, and the scale and sword returned to their original gold hue. The added contrast enhanced shape and dimension.

Client: Wedding Style Magazine, New England Edition

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners

Before and After Photo Editing of Ten 31 living art model

Task: Color & Tonal Correction

The intricacy and fascinating design of the costume was completely obscured by the back lighting and lack of fill light on the main subject. By manipulating the tonal range to bring back detail, and brightening the green of the foliage, the viewer can now fully appreciate the artistry of the costume design.

Viewing the two images together on the page, one would never suspect that they were so drastically different in their original form. With neutrality established and detail restored, the page now possesses a harmonious palette.

Client: Wedding Styl Magazine, New England Edition

Copyright Belongs to the Respective Image Owners