A few days ago, I clicked on a link that kept showing up in my Facebook feed for some software called Portrait Pro; I don’t generally pay any attention to those links so I’m not sure what motivated me to do it this time – but as it turns out, I’m glad I did. I recently paid over $100 for another portrait program that I was just figuring out how to use; I liked it fine but it wasn’t anything thrilling, just a very good skin smoothing and softening program without any fancy bells and whistles. So, it wasn’t like I needed anything else at this point, but after spending about two seconds with the freebie trial version I realized I had to have it:
Changing face shape and other features has been part of my photo editing for awhile now, but I’ve just been doing what I could get away with in Photoshop without being able to really go for it. This software was available as PS plug-in, which made it even more appealing to me, and the controls are incredibly easy to use as well as providing sliders for just about every little thing, so I can really control the final results. I’ve only had time to edit two photos so far, and admittedly I went overboard (especially on the first one) but so far I’m pretty amazed by what this program can do.
I used Portrait Pro not only to soften skin here, obviously, but in no particular order, I also changed my face shape, change my eye color as well as add a ring light reflection, move my eyebrows down a little and trim them, plump up my lips, add eyelashes, blush and highlighter, a different lip color, change my eyeshadow color as well as the shape of my eyes, widen the distance between my eyes, lengthen and slim my nose, perfect my skin tone, shorten my chin, and add light and shadows to my face. And other stuff I probably forgot. Because I made each change on a separate layer, this took a pretty long time, but photo editing is like being a kid scribbling in coloring books to me, and I can do it for hours anyway.
I decided to work with this photo because I found it rather funny, I clearly had blinked during the shot, and something about the way I was holding my hand just made me look really tired and kind of over it, whatever “it” was. I really didn’t expect the software to improve the photo so much it was no longer goofy, but it did a hell of a job on that half-closed eye and actually turned it into a nice photo. It was harder to work with this shot since the program struggled a little to properly locate all my features, but if you watch the video I linked at the top of the post you’ll see how it works, and that you can easily move the detection points around to get them placed properly.
I can’t wait to work with the program more; my mind is reeling with the possibilities, but as I mentioned it takes a great deal of time so I can only work on about one day. Certainly you could just open up the program and edit the entire photo at once, but I don;t think you get the most realistic effects that way, so I literally just work on one portion of the face at a time and put them onto layers in PS – the eyes, then the eyeshadow, then the nose, etc. My poor old computer really grinds away at stuff like this and moves slowly, but I get it all done eventually. I’ll share more later when I have them.