Frequency Separation Technique
With the Frequency Separation (FS) technique becoming mainstream in the past few years, an enormous wave of extremely over-retouched images flooded retouching- and photography-related social media groups and websites.
To a beginner, this technique seems to be almost magical – you can remove wrinkles, dark, circles, any skin imperfections and discoloration with a stroke of a brush. But there are two major elements that beginner users of this technique often miss: the aesthetic side of beauty retouching, knowing what is beautiful and when to stop in order to not over-retouch, and technical – being able to use the technique correctly, depending on the qualities of the image at hand.
Using FS excessively with very little or no understanding of beauty retouching in general, or having little control over its implementation almost always will lead to over-retouched photos.
So, let’s look at this technique through the lens of professional photographers and retouchers and how they approach it.