Based on the amount of equipment I have to support my hobby, and the number of friends, family members, and co-workers who want me to create portraits for them, this hobby could become a professional passion. All you need is the right tools, some talent, and, yes, passion. Here’s one tool that will get you there.
Automatic Retouched Photos
Good photo portraits have a number of common elements that start with the basics. A good photo. To get a good photo often requires a few other elements.
Lighting. A quality camera and lens. And, finally, a way to retouch the photo to remove blemishes (which range from pimples to scars to moles and everything in between).
Portrait Plus is not an enhanced version of iPhoto. This is a professional level tool which works standalone or as a plugin for Photoshop.
The app comes with basic tools that focus on portraits. Tools remove blemishes, alter facial features, even smooth wrinkles and skin color, and it doesn’t take much time to learn to use it.
Open Portrait Plus and drop in a portrait photo to enhance. Choose one of 10 one-click presets or create your own. The tools focus purely on the face and make it a rather simple process to turn a pedestrian photo into a unique pro-level portrait.
Here’s a good example of a before and after.
Portrait Plus tools allow you to smooth skin and remove (or maintain) freckles and blemishes. Under eye circles can be removed along with skin shine.
Other tools let you lift the cheeks, brighten a smile, enlarge the eyes, smooth the nose, even whiten teeth. The Makeup Toolkit can add blush, change eye color, add or enhance eye shadow, and even apply lipstick.
There is a built-in function to focus automatically on specific sections of the face using a couple of dozen adjustable key points. Even a smile can be enhanced (as in the example below), and skin is easily retouched and smoothed.
Portrait Plus works faster than trying to master Photoshop, but the app and plug-in are more professional level than mere hobby. It handles most of the basic photo file formats (JPG, TIFF, PNG, BMP, PSD, and many others; but only outputs JPG and TIFF). RAW photos from most major camera brands are also supported.
While it’s a rather straightforward process to improve almost any portrait photo to have that studio look, Portrait Plus is not priced for the faint of heart. Fortunately, there’s a trial version so you can see what’s possible first.