There probably is not a single guide that will show you how to retouch portraits. It is even harder to find one that gives the right and quality techniques to use for professional color correction for a DIY project just in case you do not feel like consulting photo retouching services or clipping path service providers out there. It is even hard to get a single tutorial that offers all the methods of editing images.
If you would like, there is a growing tendency where people go for tutorials to learn something; and it is possible you could learn professional color correction and photo retouching in the same way. There are paid tutorials, yes, but you can get several that are free.
Before we start of the tip list, please understand that the process begins with having a high quality image. Even clipping path service providers and photo retouching services might not help change a bad photo to a good one. Therefore, do not get convinced that a powerful photo has everything to do with editing!
1. Culling: It is simple to do it, but start by selecting just 35 photos from all what you might be having, and then showing them to friends who will help you select the last three of the best. You can then start the culling process. To curl images, open adobe bridge, go to the files desired, hit space and use arrow keys to navigate, rate the images by clicking any number from one to five, hit the space bar again and press enter to open the image in CameraRaw or PhotoShop. CameraRaw just helps create a foundation on which you can then edit the image and is not a place for filter adjustments and making of special effects. It is not the final refining stage. However, you can bring back some details in the highlights and adjust the white balance or make some other RAW adjustments.
Do not adjust exposure or contrast at this stage because this might lead to toning issues on the skin and the darkening of eyes (which is irrecoverable). Using the exposure slider will over brighten the background. To brighten the skin without changing everything else, go to the luminosity slider and use the orange and red slider. You can make dodging and burning easier by adjusting clarity to 10 although that pops the image. It will also make the images to clearly show pimples and other flaws, but you will use spot healing later. If there are issues with this, contact an expert or clipping path service provider, photo retouching services or professional in color correction.
2. Spot healing: This helps you deal with blemishes on the skin such as spots and stray hairs. Do not use the patch tool for the bags under the eyes because this will mess up with textures. Remember you can run for frequency separation if there is a problem with mismatched skin tones.
3. Dodging and burning: This is the hardest to master but probably the most important and most rewarding part of the process. The tools used for dodging and burning are easy but how much and where to dodge and burn is the issue and key to success. There are several ways of doing it too. You can easily follow the techniques used by makeup artists and do it easily. Use a new layer set to soft light and filled with 50 percent grey, then dodge by using a brush set to 5 percent opacity and brush white, then burn using a black brush. Go to Filter > Other > High Pass, set it to 30 in order to sharpen the eyes. Blend mode to Soft Light and add a black mask and brush the eyes using a white brush at 50 percent opacity.