So, it dawned on me…
When I was growing up, I, like many others, was curious about the world. Most importantly, what my parents did for a living. With a growing sense of exploration and discovery, I wanted to know more than just title. I wanted to know what they did on a day to day. Now, I never really got a full on answer (or a 5 page essay explaining), but I figured it out, – vaguely.
Now that I am an adult and have a fuller understanding of a particular workplace and the operations I can answer the question:
“What exactly do you do?”
I am an intern at Maxima Apparel Corporation. I spend a majority of my time retouching photos.
“What exactly is ‘retouching’ a photo?”
When a photo is taken, it is usually saved as a raw digital file. The photo uploads directly into the Lightroom program through tethered shooting. I get that file, and start tweaking with the exposure, contrast, highlights, tones, color, photo clarity, and lens correction. Once I can see the clothing item in full detail, in its truest form, I then scan the photo for any imperfections. If I see anything they may be a distraction when glancing at a the photo, remove it with a healing or clone tool. Depending on how the piece of clothing looks after that is done, I would then take the photo into Photoshop for more corrections. This involves any further specific edits to the clothing item; a tag isn’t on the final run of the item and needs to be removed; the shape of the clothing item is a bit awkward or not proportioned; the model themselves may not be proportioned; or there is some severe wrinkling or odd thing in the photo that required extra attention.
Now, prior to photographing an item on the model, it has to be styled. In this case it’s simply making the garment look symmetrical and wrinkle-free. Pants are usually simple and no jewelry is worn for a cleaner look – a variety of footwear available for shoot bottoms. All else fails we re-shoot an item, if not, I am there to clean it up.
Although this may sound simple (to designers – but we now), it becomes a task once you have to do just that for maybe 75-100 items (at our busiest), and each item has a set of four photos, all at different angles; front , back, left side, right side. Once every photographed item is cleaned up, I would set them in a folder and send over to the respective marketing and e-commerce members.
So, there it is. What i do. And how I do it, essentially.
I ask you, now, “What exactly do you do?”
My intern report presentation: