Photo retouching is a mixture of art and science. Not only does the subject have to look technically correct, it also has to look irresistible and believable to the consumer.
Example: I was shooting this dough cutter. I build the set, get lighting and camera angles set up perfectly. And away we go, right? …but, BUT… WAIT!
The cutter won't cut. *GASP* I realized we have the wrong kind of dough. This item is intended to cut a firmer, stiffer, drier dough like that used for making pastry. We have ooey-gooey pizza dough. It will never work!
Do we cancel? Reschedule the shoot? Heavens no! Never fear…retouching magic is here. I chose to carry on with the shoot and, once done, retouch the image.
I had to magically change the look of the dough so it had the quality of a pastry dough. None of the cuts actually went through our pizza dough so I had to digitally create them. Yes, I scattered a bit too much flour on the set. No worries, Photoshop magic took care of that powdery mess. A little cloning here, retouching there…add in a bucket-load of digital magic for the slices and, voilà, we have a worthy glamour shot of our pastry dough cutter!
In summary, retouching is a way to get the gorgeous product photo of your dreams, especially with ornery product and uncooperative props or when Murphy's Law gets comes a'knockin. Click here to view more retouching magic I've performed.