Actions in Action

The kind folks at SleekLens offered me the opportunity to try out their Portrait Perfection Collection actions.  I was a little reluctant as first because after over a decade in the portrait photography business, I am a little set in my ways and have done little to update my editing workflow after I found something that worked for me.  But I thought it might be fun to take a look at what they had and see how I could make it work for me. 

I used two personal photos that were underexposed as a result of shooting as the sun was rapidly setting as samples.

The first photo was one that I took at the beach and it actually popped back up on my Facebook feed recently.  It bothered me that the photo was a little dark and the girls’ skin didn’t have the warm look I had hoped for.  Because I was new to this set of actions it took a little trial and error to figure out what would work best for this photo.  Luckily, many of the actions have pretty obvious names, so I was able to jump around without having to do too much research.


I used the BASE- From Golden Hours, followed by EXPOSURE-Bright.  Then I used the PORTRAIT RETOUCH-Honey Skin Brush one their skin, COLOR CORRECTION-Purple Honey on the girls’ white dresses, COLOR CORRECTION-Reduce Greens on the water, and finally I added a brown vignette, which I found under VIGNETTE-Toned Vignette. 

The second photo I chose was a portrait of my daughter.  Again the original photo was dark because the sunlight was going down faster than I had kept up with my exposure.  So I wanted to brighten up the photo and also soften up her skin and add a little more softness to the photo in general. beforeafter2

I started with BASE-From Scratch and EXPOSURE-Bright.  I used Soft Glow Skin and Honey Skin Brush from the PORTRAIT RETOUCH just on her face, which gave her skin a softer texture.  I used the LIGHT GLOW-Soft Warm to add some more highlights to her hair.  I brightened her eyes using the 20% Brush and reduced some reds using the COLOR CORRECTION.  Finally I added a brown vignette and used the Paint Effect from FROM A CANDY STORE.  Here’s what it looked like in Photoshop while I was working:


As with most action sets I have purchased, I found that there is a bit of a learning curve in figuring out what is available to you and selecting which actions will work best for each particular image.  This set covers a lot of portrait retouching needs and I’m sure I am just at the beginning of the possibilities that it offers.

If you would like to learn more about these actions offered by SleekLens you can find them here:

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Posted in photography 7 years, 5 months ago at 9:49 pm.

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