The illusionistic nature of photo industry may be obvious mostly for its workers! But not for the customer, who can see only the final result, although it is hard not to realize, that the photograph in magazine has been processed somehow in any case. Of course, due to this lots of myth connected to photography and retouching are coming in sight.

Surely, no one will judge a girl, who wears complicated make-up and hairstyle, does her manicure and puts on high-heeled shoes, just to fit in some exterior standards – this is a commonly accepted game, where most part of society knows the rules! So what is the difference - between a pimple, masked by concealer and same pimple, but masked with a graphic tool?


In photo retouching it is vital to consider two aspects. First appears to be a technical need, which is an integral part of digital image creation. Second – lies in more delicate sphere of esthetic decisions. Actually, since the times of analog photography there aren’t coming up many changes, digital shot needs to be developed, just as analog one does.  The only difference is that instead of photolab with reactives we use PhotoShop and other graphic redactors.

The main - and urgent - problem is that due to the novelty and relative ease in use of tools in PhotoShop, acceptable margin of the processing is not yet finalized. In fact, an implicit aesthetic code is still undergoing constant changes, it is still under development.


The published photograph is the result of hard work of the whole team, where retoucher – is  just one of the links in the chain. Each shooting has its own idea and style! The whole team has one common task - to bring the plan in perfect condition. At its core, processing photos is the union of aesthetic and technical implementation tasks.

A team of professionals starts to work with fashion or beauty shooting even before the photographer clicks the camera shutter. In such cases, a retoucher gets a priori quality image, which can be, for example, a good-looking woman with makeup applied properly, and is shot by a professional photographer and good optics.

With these conditions, retoucher’s task - to get as close as possible to the ideal image of authors ideas. Long story short, the retouchers work is not aimed at changing the image, but only at its improvement.

Retoucher not a photoshop  magician, which rejuvenates a person of 20 years or brings overweight form to model parameters (of course, excepting for individual customer requirements). In general, retouching - is the removal out of the frame everything that can distract, interfere with or distract attention from the key objects of the frame: irregularities in manicure or make-up, a pimple or mole, disadvantages background, unsuccessful shadow or light, volume distribution in the image, scars or wrinkles in the clothes ... Yes, to work as a retoucher one should have a skilled vision and great experience in different genres!



Modern photo retouching has no clear standards, because the concept of aesthetics is subjective itself. It is worth to note, that despite the absence of such standards, the competent handling is characterized primarily by maximum preservation of natural appearance corresponding  with the task.

In today's issue of retouching is also important to regard the natural age of the model. It is widely practiced cancellation of the "eternal youth" effect. Imaging models age is becoming more difficult, as it requires from the retoucher greater knowledge about the different features of the human aging.

Such conflict of a human real appearance and his image on the glossy photos, causes a large number of disputes, and affects the attitude to retouch in a whole.
Thus, modern retouching - it's master work, where the importance goes to the ability to notice the smallest details, as well as the transmissing of images and ideas, their idealization in the framework of common sense.

It is important to remember that PhotoShop – is just a tool that serves to the art of photography, although its capabilities allow quite various manipulations to change the image. Again, the key point here is just common sense. After all, if the photo processing chips away the blanket, then this work is related to the field of graphic design, but not retouching.