In this article PRO-POST specialists will share with you some secrets for retouching  still-life shots.

In first place, it is important to understand, that you are not dealing with alive model, who can show her emotions and the whole temper of the image by herself.

Objects are static, and the main task for the retoucher becomes his skill for not just enhance the look and quality of different objects or products, but to make the composition look alive, make right accents and show the idea of the whole shot as well.

The most important thing in still-life retouch is keeping the ideal form, realistic textures and light patches. One cannot forget the purpose of such photos too:  basically it is advertising or editorial shoots. It is also vital to find and accent the brightest and interesting details, which attract, and catch the idea of the photo. It is worth noticing, that despite the ideal look, required for the object, it must remain realistic in its shape, texture and color.

Still-life retouch is a painstaking process. That is because if you look on any object, your eye will be sharp on the tiniest defects.

Everyone agrees, the in real life, any object could possibly have some defects, no matter is it factory defect or happened while transporting.  None would call off the terms or transport the new object for the shoot, if the most obvious decision would be retouching it! Defects or dirt, if there are any, also are supposed to be completely worked out.

Background work

The background in any still-life shoot is determined to fetch out the whole composition. It might be a perfect and smooth one, or markedly rude with outspoken texture. The second one is usually expected to underline the contrast, which is why it is important to mix of different textures. Nevertheless, one should never forget that in both cases of background style, however beautiful or textural it can be, thus isn’t the main detail on the shot.

Contingently, all objects and surfaces can be divided to glaring and not glaring. Each of those conditional groups needs individual work style and knowledge.  So, the glaring objects must contain the big piece of work with the light patches, and considering of their reflecting qualities. In case with the glass, add the transparency to the list. For non-glaring objects it is more important to work out the tones and shade shifts.  The main task is not to lose the realistic texture while doing the retouch – like cold shine of metal, smoothness of the glass, soft highlights of plastic or shades of the expensive leather.



If the objects are situated on the glass or mirror surface, or are made of those materials, there would be the reflection on them.  Using the clients wish, one needs or add some reflection, or delete it. Both cases require enormous accuracy and scrupulousness, and high attention to details.

In conclusion, still-life retouch is almost same to beauty-retouch, because in both cases one must be attentive and concentrated on every detail.  While working, it is important to remember, that the main factor for receiving the best result is the beauty of shape and texture, and the maximum realistic look.