What goes into the retouching process?

Another popular choice in my recent poll on blog topics was just that - retouching specifics.

What goes into it? What is included, what isn't? And why does it take so long? 😅

I'm going to answer all of your questions below, and include some before and after images.

First things first - it's in camera

The main thing I want to say is, no amount of editing can do what the camera can do with the right settings. (That is, unless you're a composite photographer) After all, I am a professional boudoir photographer, not a professional editor!

Most of what I do, my style, my art is achieved in camera with practice and expertise, with detail work being done during the retouching process.

This is why I feel confident and comfortable showing you the back of the camera and unedited images during your Reveal.

But, specifically, what do I do during the retouching process? Let's get into it ⬇️

Exposure, Warmth & Straightening

The basics.

Again, this is mostly achieved in camera. I use my settings to ensure that the highlights are poppin', the shadows are deep, the warmth is maxed out at 10,000 Kelvin, and the focal point is exposed how I want it.

During the retouching process, I might make small adjustments to ensure the exposure is perfect. This can mean increasing or decreasing slightly, while popping highlights and enhancing contrast. Usually the warmth is spot on, but depending on the time of day and outside lighting, I may make some adjustments.

I'll also take a moment to straighten any lines like walls, doorways, floors, etc.

Healing & removals

Before adjusting anything or adding masks, we want to remove some things that are standard in boudoir photography:

  • Bruises
  • Blemishes
  • Spots/scratches on the floors/walls

Here are some things I will NOT remove without additional fees/prior request:

  • Scars
  • Birth/beauty marks
  • Tags from outfits (please cut these out)
  • Extensive tan lines can't always be adjusted. It may require additional fees. Opt for a custom spray tan to even out!
  • I will never liquify/alter/shrink your body

Additional detail work:

  • Hair enhancement - bringing up the highlights in the hair where needed
  • Highlight enhancement - bringing up the highlights on the body in strategic places
  • Curve enhancement - increasing the depth of shadows on the body in strategic places
  • Skin softening (working around lines of the face/body and tattoos)
barrie boudoir photographer intimate couples maternity photoshoot retouching editing how to

Unedited image. Note bruise, blemishes, and the need for some adjustments

barrie boudoir photographer intimate couples maternity photoshoot retouching editing how to

After lighting/warm adjustments and healing/removals, before detail work.

barrie boudoir photographer intimate couples maternity photoshoot retouching editing how to

Final image, with all detail work and skin softening complete!


As you can see, not all changes are immediately visible - but the value is in the details!

All of these big and small changes take time, which is why the process of retouching and album design take time. I ensure all images are up to my (very high) standards, and are something you're going to love the first round through.

Once your order is placed, the all-female team at this Toronto, Canada print lab will hand-craft your album and take their time to create something breathtaking for you to cherish forever. Click here to see album design samples!