Here is the post production in PS for the jazzed-up stylist image.
Here is the before and after of the finished image and the initial take. I will focus on the effects PS stuff and not the basic retouch which was done to the base image. The starting image was shot with the final idea in mind (some Ansel Adams pre-visualization eh!) with the hard edge lights and light to dark on the face.
Here is a close-up of the original image. Good beefy capture with some hot highlights to be exploited. Basic retouching like eye brights, teeth brights and major zits done on this layer
Here is the first filter - accented edges.
I used this to make the edges bolder and more illustration like and soften the broad tones. I copied the background layer and then ran the filter at various setting until I got the look I wanted. I then adjusted the layers opacity to 68% to tweek the look. This tweek was done after the later layers were in effect-kind a fine tuning process.
The next filter was poster edges. This filter was done on another copy of the background placed on top of the stack. I worked the setting for the amount of grungy texture I wanted. I then masked the effect with a layer mask on the smoother areas of the subjects face. This layer opacity was then set to 34%. This layer adds a crunchy texture to the image that is smoothed by the accent edges layer below. Together they make for a movie poster illustration look (have you ever gone close-up to a poster in the multiplex? Crunchy crunchy but looks snappy and dynamic at a viewing distance. To my eye this looks more subtle and powerful than just over sharpening
Next I made a blank layer on top and grabbed the paint brush and sampled a color from the left side and painted over the background on the right side to balance the image. I then knocked back the opacity a little, I was not trying to perfectly remove the people and stuff in the background , but de-emphasize them. I popped in another layer and put a glow on the scissor blade with some white paint and a little G-blur, adjusting the layer opacity to taste.
Next was a curves set to adjust the subject and make it snap. This was actually three curves layer working together. One overall. A second masked for the face. And a third for just the darker area of the face. These layer provide adjustment in a fluid manner over time using the opacity levels for each layer. You could call it playing around until I like it or working the canvas like a painter works paint, on and off and around until it looks right. It's all a process folks, not a magic button.
The final adjustments are two curve layers masked to punch up the background but not the subject.
Mr. Scissorhands the sequel.
I think this image looks crunchy good printed and on the web.
What do you all think?
Please leave some constructive feedback or hurl stones if you like. There are some more images like this on my website and on flickr