Faces on the Street – Guanajuato


San Miguel De Allende, Mexico 2013

I’ve been wanting to try a different processing style for portraits – the rich and deep gritty style and this seemed the perfect subject matter – a portrait of an old lady going to a Church in Mexico. I’ve found varying opinions on this style and most people I know either love it or hate it.

I can’t seem to point my finger exactly at what is amiss but have a feeling something is. I would love to hear from you if you have some experience doing this style of processing and any specific learning that can be applied here.

I’ve used Nik Silver Effex Pro.

10 thoughts on “Faces on the Street – Guanajuato

  1. I love the composition and I do like the post processing. I do lean towards making the contrast on the face a little less aggressive but again that is just my preference overall it’s still an excellent photograph.

    • Thanks for sharing your feedback Mark. As a general rule, I do not prefer sharpening/ or creating contrast in portraits, but this is the exception – the goal was to add additional contrast to accentuate the wrinkles.

  2. I read the two comments and think it depends on your preference. I am wondering about softening the wrinkles some. This woman is a wonderful subject with her shawl, both showing the repetition of curves and lines.Always hearing good things about the range of tones in Nik Silver Effex.

    • Thanks for sharing your comment Jane. Silver Effex makes it easier to process B&W, what would require advanced skills in Photoshop. I am still scratching the surface of the NIk software.

      Regarding the wrinkles, it is a bit overdone – consciously – as I was going for that look. I will work on a slightly toned down version to compare

  3. I have no expérience at all in portrait but I can say that I love this picture, you push up the structure and it make her wrinkles more inground.
    Nik collection is a very great soft I like it a lot

  4. Love the subject.
    This elderly lady has some of those great wrinkles and character lines which make her an ideal portrait subject.

    My only criticism would be that there is too much definition in the wrinkles making them appear too deep and too full of contrast. This in effect makes her facial skin look like wax or clay. I might suggest that a softer approach to focus and contrast would be a wee bit better. Perhaps you could post the ‘original’ straight out of the camera so we could compare. I have been considering buying Nik software as it supposedly has a wonderful array of ‘greys’ and is ideal for the B & W photographer.

    As a woman of ‘mature’ years, I would personally not like a photographer to emphasise my winkles – I’d rather have them softened in an image.

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