Regardless of what type of artist you may be portfolio is your business card. It is your resume, marketing tool, an ad and a statement in one. It says "look this is what I can do and that is my style". It is also a self-check medium for you as the author of its content. There is no time frame within which you should review your folio. you should do it as often as needed, or as often as you feel it is necessary. If you are like me and you love editing your photos, love learning and are on a constant hunt for new ideas, new ways of retouching, new ways of toning images and so on, you will realize two things very quickly. One is that the quality of your work improves with passing time, and two, that your style is evolving. Consequently, if you have a mix of old and new images in your folio, it may happen so that some of them may become outdated and inconsistent in terms of their style. This sends a clear message to your clients that you are not a mature artist, or perhaps a lazy one, who cannot see inconsistency in his or her own work, etc. All that suggests unreliability. Also, clients will choose you mainly for your style and quality of work. They do not know you in person, so all they know about you is what they can see in your portfolio. It is essential to develop a self assessment routine and implement it rigorously in your timetable. Yes, it is time consuming, but it is worth it in more ways than one.
Look at the above images which were created within less than a year. The top one is a new version and the bottom one was created last year. It is a whole new edit from scratch, and you do not have to take my word for it, just watch the video below which shows the entire editing workflow in photoshop.
Both photos are very different in style and quality. First the quality of texture is much better in the new edit. Old version suffered from texture loss due to blur vignetting done manually without working on tones layer and texture layer separately. This is something I would not do now. Also, skin texture received a much more detailed retouch via micro dodging and burning which eliminates small skin bumps amplified by the hard steep angled light. Vignetting is executed very selectively in the new photo, and it complements the way I reshaped the body of the model with shadows and highlights. The entire image was turned on its axis counter-clockwise to add more kinetic energy and create diagonal lines across the image. They contrast with a general calm and moody feel to the photo. The old edit was a bit too static for my liking and was not multilayered. Dodging and burning emphasizes the drama and creates more visual anchors. I added a tilt shift blur to redirect the attention of the viewer to the body art and lines running across model's body. I also changed the toning to much warmer, which further calms the feel of the photo.
There are no happy accidents here, it is all planned and premeditated based on what I feel when I look at the photo. The old edit was not in full agreement with my current style and it had to be addressed. I truly enjoy re-working my images. Some of them I re-edit a few times, even complex photoshop manipulations. I do not care how much time it takes. It is always a very rewarding and educational experience.
Photography workshops in Tokyo: http://www.ryuurui.com/photography-workshops.html
Hire a photographer in Tokyo: http://www.ryuurui.com/hire-a-photographer-in-tokyo.html
Photo blog: http://www.japan-in-photography.com/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+PonteRyuurui/postsFor more tutorials and how to videos check out my photoshop and photography tips and tricks YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEOVGZ2rpLhR7gSPvaexxxQ
Together with Mariusz, we are working very hard on creating new exciting content for the Ink Treasures website. At the moment our focus is history related articles, as well as articles regarding the co-created art.
Our aim is to create a comprehensive website network, with easy to understand and follow articles on the subject of ink painting and calligraphy. There are several new ideas in preparation, and although I cannot give you all the details yet, I can reveal a few things.
First, this month we plan to launch our store, with all kinds of items for purchase. That will include art, custom art, designs, commercial and private orders, prints, and so on.
Next, on May we are launching the forums, where people will be able to exchange their knowledge, experience, ask questions, share their art, or simply socialise.
We have also started a cooperation with several institutions and artists in Japan and Europe. This year looks very promising, and we sincerely hope that you will enjoy what we are both preparing for you. Many thanks for your support!
All updates are published on our Facebook fan page (see below), please give us your LIKEs!
Ink Treasures is an artistic project that I am currently working on together with an accomplished ink painter, Mariusz Szmerdt.
We decided to combine our efforts, and not only co-create a series of artwork that would merge the traditional and modern ink painting and calligraphy art., but also tell you more about the history and secrets of both, and share some of our knowledge with those who are willing to study them.
Our goal is not a specific genre, but a wide spectrum of themes, subjects, and techniques. The aim is to inject some new life into the traditional arts of ink painting and calligraphy. Our works will span from martial art motifs through female acts, abstract or fantasy art (you may expect a lot of dragons), to very traditional and subtle creations, such as you can see in the above picture., or even philosophical themes, such as Buddhism, Zen or Taoism.
We will be opening a store with out art, too., which will be for purchase in various formats, be it electronic, raw (prepped for framing), or framed (modern or traditional, including Japanese hanging scrolls). We also except orders for commercial use, such as advertisement, books, posters, stock photos, business cards, concept art, etc.
Please visit us on www.ink-treasures.com / facebook Ink-Treasures / Google+ Ink Treasures
Our contact: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also mail me directly at email@example.com
Ponte Ryuurui (品天龍涙)