Frequency separation has been all the rage in the retouching industry in the past couple of years. Hated, loved, criticized, acclaimed, it has seen it all. But do you really know how it works, what it can do, and more?
Split frequency, frequency separation, or whatever you want to call it has become very popular in the past few years. It has first been acclaimed and loved because it helped beginners save time and work faster, but then high-end retouchers came in and tried educating people to show how much damage it could make to an image if it was not properly used. Since then, we can see in many discussion groups people talking about filtered images or blurred low frequency to describe an image that retain texture but doesn’t look natural at all.
In the video above, Conny Wallstrom discusses the different methods available to create a separation, what each layer is useful for, and how you can go further than what you probably already know, for example creating multiple splits or how to bring back details in specific ranges. The explanation is quite long as the video lasts almost an hour and 15 minutes, but it’s well worth the time it if you want to broaden your knowledge on this technique and truly understand what you do when you use it. It will make frequency separation a much better tool for your workflow and your images if you know the concepts behind it and what each layer really does.
Wallstrom is a very knowledgeable photographer and retoucher, with a background in software engineering. He’s also the person behind the Retouching Toolkit, a panel designed to simplify and accelerate retouchers' workflow in Photoshop.