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SM2012
I am very aware of the fact that the hands distract from the portrait. My question is as follows: do you think you can create a portrait of a beautiful woman and include less-than-beautiful features? My feeling is that you can and that it helps to do so. Why? Because beauty is more "real" in this age of Photoshop when it's "genuine". Almost the only post-processing here is the mono conversion and work to enhance the mono conversion including the vignette. I have done almost nothing to the model and have deliberately kept the hands in their "natural" state.



Again, I ask for the well-being of the community to focus on constructive criticism of the image and refrain from criticising the photographer (which you're more than welcome to do by personal message).

This image was captured and processed by Stéfan. Canon 5DII and 24-70 mm f/2.8 @ f/7.1 with post-processing in LR4 and PS CS6.
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marilynx
I think you have misunderstood my criticism. Surely her hands appear large because they are far to near the camera ... however this may well be my ignorance.
I didn't mean she had unattractive hands.
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davids
Interesting portrait... I very much like the "naturalness" of the pose - not forced or contrived and that goes well with the simplicity of the processing. However the hands are a distraction as they aren't quite prominent enough to be a feature (not very well explained but do a google search on "bill brandt micheldever 1948" and you'll see what I mean).
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ArtBee
She looks like she can't wait for the shoot to be over. Rather bored, but somewhat amused as well.
About the hands....folded in front of her, closer to her body may have been a better choice. The hands become the focus of attention and take away from the subject. That is of course if the subject you intended was this lovely lady.
The mono does work well with this image.
As with any image an artist creates, it is subjective.
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liveandletlive
I don't think she looks bored. I think she looks very relaxed. The hands bothered me at first but then I gave much thought to what you said and I changed my mind. I love that she hasn't been Photoshopped into some expressionless porcelain doll.
The fact that virtually every image that graces every magazine is processed to death makes it very hard to feel "adequate" in an unedited photo.

I also really like it in black/white.
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SM2012
Thanks for all this fascinating input, especially the Brandt reference and idea. @ Artbee: this was at the end of a three-hour session and I think she *was* getting tired, so kudos to you for spotting that. I have images of her with hands neatly tucked away and I also appreciate the difficulty of dealing with them (Goya used to charge extra for portraits featuring hands and would do a knock-off price on portraits without them...). @ Marilyn: no, you're right, the geometry of the image makes the hands larger.
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xabolcs
Your question: in addition to the already deformed hands is not advantageous, to the B & W conversion: gray, flat, stilted corner darkening.
The B & W conversion made color channels: linen color filter opposite effect; (of white linen effect hard to improve later.)
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SM2012
Here's a less handy version - different treatment, same concept:

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SADHYA
I don't like the vignetting.
I like the hands, and would have liked to see them given more space, and perhaps a little more light. I really like the perspective, with the hands enlarged. I would like to see the image in Portrait crop,losing the bits of the room, lamp, door etc, which don't IMO add anything to the portrait. What I also would like, is the loss of the scrunched up material around her body.
Three hour session! Poor woman. I hope she will come back so you can have another go.
I will add some more comments on your blog page.
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va000119
Anything which is handmade always has flaws. Can we say photography is handmade, yes definetly. Often when people look at a handmade article they search for these slight imperfections and when they find it their comments usually include ` I like this because of the so- called flaw`. Too simple an analogy maybe but I handmake stuff all day and I hear it so often...A person male or female without an imperfection to me is bland and my eye will pass over it quickly, that little quirk or difference holds my eye and too me can make or break my decision as to whether something is worth a little closer inspection. Not sure about the fuzzyness around the edge of the image, like Sadhya I feel it doesn`t seem to earn its place and is therefore not needed...Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and as such is a very personal choice...not sure if I`m making sense here but their again this is a very personal opinion. )
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ArtBee
First version but with her hands folded as in the second version. I would like to see how that works.....
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EvaLizette
Two very different picture. The first one I see her hands. They look strong and even in her tiredness she`s very beautiful. The second one is more alluring and a warm feeling in it. More soft. I`m not sure of the vignette ,maybe a blur instead ?
B&W contrast and colouring are great and in perfect balance
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ArtBee
Is this the look you were wanting to achieve?

A Brandt photo edited to make it Photoblog friendly....
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va000119
Very Jenny Saville, monumental aspect to the portrayal adds to its beauty.
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qsilver1
I agree with Sadhya, not a fan of the vignette. Crop the portiat as well, the BW works well.
I could care less about her hands she's not 18, that's the model u have....
It's a process .....
The first pic has some artical of clothing under her chest....it's distracting. The 2nd pic is much cleaner and strong !
Thanks ))
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TheDashd
May be crossed hand would have been a better. But really she is very charming.. I didn't concentrate on hand much when the subject is so pretty
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