Exercise 21: Enhancement

Task: Photograph a close-up, head and shoulders portrait, in available or natural light, without using flash or any other photographic lighting. The face should be in shade, should be towards the camera and with both eyes clearly visible. Make 2 selections, each with its own adjustment.

1. The first should be the entire face – adjust by increasing the brightness and increasing the contrast.

2. Adjust the eyes. Limit this to the iris and pupil.


Abseil Original

I used the magnetic lasso tool to select just the face and feathered the selection at 3 pixels. I then increased the brightness and contrast slightly to create the image below.

Increased brightness and contrast

The alterations have really lightened the check areas in particular. The second part of the exercise involved selecting the pupils and brightening them and increasing the saturation. At first they appeared to be very green and unnatural, so I altered them towards blue (below).

Eyes enhanced

The colour of the irises have been enhanced considerably and works well with the first step increasing the brightness and contrast. However there becomes a point where the changes may look unnatural. I felt that lightening the face was acceptable because it was removing the external factor of the shadow cast. However when eye colour started to change in the second step I felt uncomfortable as this was changing something physical about the actual subject, and that reality was being tampered with.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s