Sit Still Look Pretty

I have dreamed of the day where I could produce images that would look and feel similar to Florabella Collection - Photoshop Actions . I think I am getting close, or at least on the right path! She is an incredible artist! Her work has deeply inspired my entire editing style.

Her actions are amazing, I would highly recommend them. ( Actions are workflow presets that you can apply to a photo to speed up work time. Basically, instead of 20 mouse-clicks, you do one click and it does it all at once, you can then adjust it as needed. ) Though with any action you have to know what to do with it, it will not do the work for you. Actions are not filters! This was a lesson I had to learn... about 5 years ago I got her actions and was sad that my photos weren't suddenly amazing. I have had people ask me what actions... which is cool but also hard to answer. Here's the answer:

For this particular photo...

In Lightroom: increased brightness, increased shadows, decreased highlights, added more yellow and green to white balance, adjusted tone curve, exported to photoshop... This is where most photographers stop.

Take it to photoshop!

Used Florabella retouch action to smooth skin, brighten eyes, darken eyelashes. Painted on the layer mask to eyes, adjusted brightness and saturation, painted on skin, adjusted opacity of smoothness, painted on eyelashes, increased contrast and clarity, used the retouch tool in photoshop to remove any fly-aways from her face. THEN the fun part! Used Florabella's sun flare action ( this is a radial flare, with the colors adjusted to yellows and reds ) Resize and rotate the sun flare to correct placement, remove flare from face, hair, and specific parts of the background with a layer mask ( painting ), these particular photos total took 7 separate flares. I then did color selection, and selected the yellows and greens, made an adjustment layer mask and adjusted the color sliders to make the leaves more blue-green as opposed to yellow-green, used the burn tool to darken leaves and create shadows and depth, used the burn and dodge tool to ever so slightly contour her facial features, painted on more contrast and saturation to the leaves, created the grid, did some more tweaks with dodge and burn then applied my watermarks, save as, jpeg, save. Done!

Yes I use actions and I have a fancy camera... not they don't do the work for you, just make it a little easier.
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