Best software for Portraiture Photography?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Freida, Oct 31, 2018.

  1. Freida macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    #1
    Hello guys,

    those that do portraiture photography, would you mind sharing your experience or suggestions, please?

    I can't decide which software should I learn. I used Aperture and like it. It was elegant and simple enough but it was also quite powerful.
    Then I used ON1 Raw (2017) which was ok. It allowed me to paint my mask for skin smoothing etc. (something Pixelmator Pro still doesn't have as there is no colour overlay so you can't see the mask) and it seemed decent. At places confusing and counterintuitive but it was ok. The reason why I stopped using it was that each update was paid so when 2018 was announced it was again $99 I decided to look elsewhere.
    Wanted Pixelmator Pro but that software doesn't seem really friendly for Portraiture photography. Its more for everything else :)
    Photoshop is expensive and I feel its overly complicated.
    Affinity is an option but I haven't given it a go as I read it had some issues although I do admit that that was a year ago so perhaps it changed.
    Lightroom I used for a bit (trial) but again, didn't really like that you have to pay monthly and they stopped the perpetual licences so I didn't proceed further with that one.

    Also, I was waiting for iMac updates to upgrade from my 15" MBP but because nothing was updated I kinda feel that maybe it is the right time to switch to iPad Pro only and just that with the pencil.
    That would leave me with Infinity I guess or Photoshop next year but I'm kinda scared with photoshop as its massive and complicated software.

    So, what would you guys suggest or what do you use for Portraiture/Fashion photography, please?

    Thank you so much
     
  2. mollyc macrumors 68000

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    Aug 18, 2016
    #2
    I use LR and PS. I don’t like the subscription model but I like the programs. ;)
     
  3. Cheese&Apple macrumors 68010

    Cheese&Apple

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    Location:
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    #3
    It doesn’t matter if it’s portraiture, fashion, landscape or wildlife, you’re in the same boat as many who are looking for an alternative to Adobe and their subscription plan. There are numerous threads in this forum and others on the subject as people conduct an exhaustive search.

    Bottom line is that if you want the most comprehensive application, it is now and in the foreseeable future: Photoshop.

    Yes it’s complex and complicated at first but with the almost unlimited number of excellent quality free video tutorials available, it becomes much easier with time.

    The trick to Photoshop is finding an online instructor that you like and is easy to follow at your pace then do the tutorials. Start with the basics - this sounds obvious but I know people who got lost in Photoshop because they tried jumping in at the more complicated editing technique levels.

    If you can live with the subscription plan, give Photoshop the time your images deserve.
     
  4. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #4
    I really don't like the idea of photoshop and its subscription model.
    And I do believe that there is good alternative for portraiture photography so I'm just asking around to see what others have experienced :)
     
  5. mollyc macrumors 68000

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    Aug 18, 2016
    #5
    A lot of people use PS Elements, which is still standalone and offers many of the same features as PS, especially if you are only doing photography and not graphic design type of work. But keep in mind, the full boat Adobe products are still considered the industry standard. There are alternatives, but I wouldn't say they are on par yet with full PS.
     
  6. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #6
    yeah, i imagined. How about Affinity?

    Basically, the bare minimum I need is good skin smoothing with ability to see the mask (colour overlay). (plus the other basic ones like exposure etc. but those are in all apps:) )
     
  7. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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  8. USAntigoon macrumors regular

    USAntigoon

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    #8
    I use Capture One Pro and just love it. Pixelmator Pro is OK for final touches after you have done the big work in C1..I also use the Tangent Element Kb for simultaneous corrections. Do have an iMac Pro and it flies..
     
  9. mpfuchs macrumors 6502

    mpfuchs

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    Sep 19, 2014
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    VA
    #9
    You can still purchase the perpetual license of Lightroom.
    Obviously there won't be any more updates, but in my opinion that's only partially an issue with RAW compatibility of new cameras being released.
    I for one plan to ride out the version of Lightroom I payed for, until it doesn't make sense anymore...

    One note on your iPad Pro plan: I read that you can't connect any hard drives to the USB-C port on the new iPads.
    Just something to keep in mind if you got most your library on an external hard drive and plan to use your iPad for edits, you're going to have to add all pictures to the iPad first. Seems to me that's where Apple want's to make sure you're paying for that monthly iCloud subscription...
     
  10. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #10
    Looks nice, I'll test it out. A bit pricey though but maybe black friday will present something more reasonable.

    Also, they don't have an iPad version?
     
  11. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #11
    None of this software is going to be cheap. If you want quality you will have to pay for it.
     
  12. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #12
    Well, there is a difference between all options under $100 and the other for $300. So, I will check it out and let you know if its 3x better than the other :)
     
  13. Strider64 macrumors 6502a

    Strider64

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    #13
    I would suggest Capture One, but they jacked the prices up (I was lucky and bought before they did). I stopped using Adobe Creative Suite for I didn't like the subscription service, but I loved Photoshop when I was using it (Even had 2 college courses with it). Pixelmator Pro is OK, but the layout is a little weird and color adjusting is a good as it is with Photoshop.

    Bottom Line is you can't go wrong with Photoshop & Lightroom if you don't mind the subscription, but other applications can be used to fit your needs. Like someone already stated if you want programs to fit your need then unfortunately you'll going to have to pay a premium.
     
  14. USAntigoon macrumors regular

    USAntigoon

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    #14
    No it doesn’t work on iOS platforms, but the pressure is on with the release of the new iPad Pro and the USB-C port..Agreed it’s not a cheap program but it’s very stable and powerful...Yes, do try it out...
     
  15. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #15
    Cool, lets hope they do :)
    Thanks
     
  16. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    #16
    If you like Photoshop but not its price, then look at Adobe Photoshop Elements. It has almost all of the same features for photography (but not graphic arts) as the full Photoshop including masks and correction layers and the selection tools. Yes, it also includes some amateurish gimmicks but you can ignore those. The price is a one-time $99.
     
  17. Clix Pix macrumors demi-goddess

    Clix Pix

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    #17
    Back in the summer I purchased Luminar 2018 and I have been enjoying using it for most of my images. I find it fairly easy to use and it suits my style of post-processing/editing. In December they will be adding a new "Library" or "Catalog" component (i.e., a DAM) which should enhance the program's flexibility and usefulness significantly.
     
  18. v3rlon macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    You are kind of talking about different programs.

    Pixelmator Pro, Affinity Photos, and Photoshop are in one group. If you want to do extensive pixel pushing (Liquefy, major clone stamping, merging and compositing photos), these are your group. Affinity works well for me. Also, it has a frequency separation tool built right in.

    If you want to develop raw files (less pixel pushing, more just adjust levels), Lightroom, On1, Capture One, Luminar, and DXO fall into this category. Note that there are portrait options. On1 2019 even has a portrait tab focused on this. You can do an AMAZING amount of retouching using these applications.

    Also, On1 upgrade pricing should be less than $99.

    Now if you just want portrait software, you could look at Portrait Pro by Anthropics, or Portraiture (not sure by who).
     
  19. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    #19
    Photo RAW 2019 was released today to those that preordered. It has a portrait module with tools specifically for eyes and mouth. I image it will be for sale to the general public in a few days.
     
  20. mollyc macrumors 68000

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    Aug 18, 2016
    #20
    Portraiture is by Imagenomic but it is a plug-in for photoshop and I don’t think there is a stand-alone option.
     
  21. The Bad Guy macrumors 65816

    The Bad Guy

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    Oct 2, 2007
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    Australia
    #21
    So lemme get this straight, you're after the best software for portraiture...or the best software for portraiture besides Photoshop?

    Because those are two seperate things.
     
  22. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #22
    I hate Adobe's model to pay monthly so that is a big no no for me.
    I also hate learning new stuff and then realise its limited and I have to look for alternative and spend time again to learn it.
    Thats the reason why I am here to ask for opinions with a specific question so when I invest the time to learn something from scratch I know it will stick with me and I'm fine.

    I liked Aperture as it was user friendly. I have 2017 ON1 Raw but it was a bit slow, clunky and kinda crappy so I've stopped using it.
    I haven't used frequency separation for the skin yet but i'm interested in it as it seems like the best tool/result one can aim for with portraiture photography.

    I'm a slow learner so I want to bet on the right horse now. :) I really hate wasting money so don't wanna buy software, realise its not enough (like pixelmator pro is missing basic things like colour overlay when masking etc.) so thats why I'm here asking for feedback.

    Its true that pushing pixels around is not something i'm totally interested at this stage but maybe it will change. In fact, I kinda hoped that Pixelmator Pro would be the ideal candidate until I've found out that its actually very limited for portraiture.

    Affinity is interesting if I'm honest.
    ON1 2019 - not sure I wanna go down that road again but might try a trial as I still remember that software

    Don't want Photoshop - super expensive, super complex and super unintuitive (for me). In fact, Photoshop was never really user friendly with their UI etc. Just hate that software :)

    Yep, I know - I'm just a noob that want to improve and not buy useless things :)
     
  23. mollyc macrumors 68000

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    Aug 18, 2016
    #23
    As I mentioned above, you should look at Photoshop Elements. It is still a stand alone product, is less than $100 and if you ever do decide to upgrade to a more robust program, you'll already be ahead of the curve for full Photoshop. And as much as I hate to pay a subscription, I don't really consider $120 a year for BOTH PS and LR to be that expensive when you factor in the frequent updates.

    What do you specifically want to do with "portrait photography"?

    Otherwise I think you are looking for a unicorn product that just doesn't exist.
     
  24. The Bad Guy macrumors 65816

    The Bad Guy

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    Australia
    #24
    Not liking Adobe's lease options is understandable. I don't like it either and it's a damn shame that's the way everything seems to be going these days.

    Not finding the UI intuitive or easy to use is also fair enough. It's a very deep piece of software and some of the things it does is very complicated.

    However that doesn't change the fact that hands down Photoshop is THE best software available for portrait / fashion work. There is nothing comparable.

    It's also the industry standard for the sort of photography you want to do.
     
  25. Freida thread starter macrumors 68000

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    Oct 22, 2010
    #25
    I know it is. However, I'm just not happy to go down that route so I'm looking for other things. Otherwise I would just bite the bullet and go Photoshop and don't look back. :)
    Anyway, maybe I just need to combine 2 things and settle there. Pixelmator Pro and maybe Affinity (just the way I see it now although more research is needed) :)
     

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31 October 31, 2018