To Airbrush or Not To Airbrush, That is the Question!

three degrees of airbrushes

To Airbrush or Not To Airbrush, That is the Question!

Like many photographers I edit images on Photoshop, including airbrushing those that need it. However, when does an image “need” airbrushing? This is the question that I find most photographers struggle with, whether they know it or not. To airbrush or not to airbrush, that really is the important question.

Who hasn’t seen images on a photographers online gallery where the skin is so airbrushed the image looks more like a cartoon than it does a real person. I often wonder what the model looked like before, making it necessary for such a heavy hand on Photoshop.

Assuming you know how to airbrush an image, what goes into your decision to airbrush a photo? Do you have a “heavy hand” when it comes to airbrushing? Does it depend on the project? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Take a look at the images above. The photo on the left has no airbrushing. The middle image was airbrushed a little. The far right image was the most airbrushed. Which version, if any, do you think looks best and why? Again, leave a comment and share your thoughts!

One thought on “To Airbrush or Not To Airbrush, That is the Question!

  • avatar
    December 21, 2011 at 10:00 am

    I really dislike the idea of having to airbrush a model. That is the point of the person being a model. The proper lighting and angle can really highlight a persons extraordinary features. The whole airbrushing seems fake to me. But that is just my opinion.


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