The Professionals Choice for Portrait Retouching
PSKiss Skin Gear Pro allows you to remove skin imperfections, enhance make-up work, lower wrinkles levels and more, until you reach the perfect skin texture for your portrait. Smooth, yet natural looking.
Retouching a portrait with PSKiss Skin Gear Pro is very simple and fast when using the workflow, as presented in this free tutorial (panels available only in Photoshop CS5).
After installing Skin Gear Pro Pixel Bender Filter and Skin Gear Pro Panel, launch Photoshop.
Go to Window > Extensions and choose PSKiss Skin Gear Pro Panel:
Now you are ready to start retouching.
To start the retouch process, you need first to create a selection of the skin areas.
Click on to open the Color Range dialog box. Hold down the Command key (Macintosh) or the Ctrl key (Windows), to present the color image in the window. Click once on a skin area and release the key you were holding:
Hold down the Shift key and add click on more skin areas in the image (you can click within the Color Range dialog box or on the image itself), keep on clicking (don’t let go of the Shift key) until you get almost every bit of skin presented by white color:
You might need to continue Shift-clicking and Alt/Option-clicking to fine tune your selection. When done, click OK.
Note that the preview in the Pixel Bender window, ignores the layer mask and shows the entire image.
Retouching skin with Skin Gear Pro
- Use Smart-Smooth Level to soften the overall “feel” of the skin. Higher values mean softer skin. This slider should have the largest value of the first 4 sliders.
- Use Overall Restore to threshold smoothing strength. Higher values means more original details are maintained. Lower values mean smoother skin. This slider should have the lowest value of the first 4 sliders.
- The basic thumb rule is – the larger the gap, the smoother the skin…
- Use Preserve Skin Features and Remove Skin Defects to control which kind of details will be preserved. Higher values mean more large details than skin texture. Lower values mean less large details and more texture.
- Think of these sliders as if they were “layering” the face from large details to small texture details.
- For best results, keep these sliders’ values above Overall Restore value and bellow Smart-Smooth Level value. Make sure that Preserve Skin Features value is higher than Remove Skin Defects.
- All values are minimum: 0.5, maximum: 15
- Use Intensity to control the impact of the filter. Higher values mean significant smoothing. Lower values mean milder influence.
In this sample we used our “Beauty” preset:
More about Skin Gear Pro presets, in a little while…
After setting up the filter, click OK
Fine-tune the mask
After applying the filter, you might find out that some areas, such as eyes, lips and hair, need to be excluded from the filter’s influence. In addition, some skin areas might need to be added to the effected areas.
To edit the mask:
- Alt/Option-Click on the mask thumbnail in the layers panel to present the mask:
- Choose the Paint Brush tool (we added it to the Workflow panel, for your convenience):
- Set the Foreground/Background colors to default (button also included in panel):
- Paint with white on places you want to add to the effected areas; Paint with black on places you want to exclude:
- Alt/Option-Click the mask thumbnail to present the colored image. If needed, keep working on the mask. Pay attention to important “character” details, such as smile wrinkles and nostrils. In this example we also excluded the areas between eye lashes and eye browses to emphasize the make up:
Final retouch of defects
Some defects can’t be removed by the filter and must be removed manually.
To manually remove these defects:
- Activate the layer (instead of the mask) by clicking its thumbnail in the Layers panel:
- Choose the appropriate retouch tool – the Spot Healing Brush, the Healing Brush or the Clone Stamp Tool from the Workflow panel:
- Zoom-in and remove the defects:
Sometimes, after smoothing a portrait, the image might nott look “realistic” enough. To prevent this, you can add some grain to the retouched areas.
To add grain to retouched areas:
- Click on one of three grain levels in the Workflow panel – Low, Medium or High:
- Each one adds a different amount of soft “Film Grain” into a separate layer:
- Note that the grain layer effects only retouched areas and that opacity is set to 75%. If you need more, you can always push it up to 100%.
- If you would like to use a different grain preset, simply click on the new level in the panel. It will replace the current grain with the new one.
Using Launch Preset
- Editorial – Uses low smoothing values and basic intensity. Suitable for official portraits and editorial usage.
- Beauty – Uses medium smoothing values and higher intensity. Suitable for commercial beauty and fasion photos.
- China Doll – Uses high smoothing values and very high intensity. Use this one when you want that “China Doll” face effect.
When you click on one of these presets, PSKiss Skin Gear Pro dialog box inside the Pixel Bender Gallery will appear automatically. Check the preview image. If you are happy with the result, click OK and continue with the workflow. Otherwise, make your adjustments until you reach the desired effect and click OK.
Please note – Unlike other PSKiss Photoshop Filters, the Pixel Gear Suite presets do not override the layer created by the workflow panel. Pixel Gear Filters work like regular Photoshop Filters – they work on the current layer as it is.
The Final Image
Free Video Tutorial
For a detailed demonstration of PSKiss Skin Gear Pro with some tips and tricks,
watch this free video tutorial: