My name is Pratik Naik, a high end retoucher and owner of Solstice Retouch

I've had the pleasure of being able to have my work published in some of the best magazines in the world, such as Elle, Vogue, Marie Claire, GQ, Harper's Bazaar, and so forth. Through the years, I've been able to accumulate some of the best techniques available that allow you to get amazing results while spending the least amount of time necessary.

As photographers and retouchers alike, time is valuable. Since there is a lot of conflicting information out there, it's difficult to find what is accurate and what isn't. Till now, you never had a one stop source to get everything you wanted to know from start to finish.

To add to the complexity, many college level courses simply do not go into this level of detail in their own retouching classes as expressed by my students. Some of the best techniques also take a very large amount of time, most of which you do not have. Who wants to spend all that time anyway?

The course is based around just that, optimal efficiency. Having a workflow that is really easy to understand with techniques that are not only easy to do, but get great results without spending much time.

With photographers and other industry colleagues expressing interest in wanting a course like this, I decided to make one to fill the hole in demand and offer a course strictly for retouching effectively.

 
 

The course is 2 full days, where I fly to you and teach you everything I know about retouching on your own setup. Before arriving, I study your work and customize my course to cover everything you want to know specifically. It's very comprehensive and tailor made to fit your needs.

Due to comfort and familiarity of your own setup and surroundings, working with you on your setup allows for optimal retention of information. Since it spans two days, it's enough time to allow us to go at your own comfortable pace as well.

I also make sure that by the time I leave, you are able to perform the same techniques in front of me and demonstrate that you got it to a point that you are satisfied with. Prior to, I also do everything in front of you to show you how I got from start, to end, with the results you would expect.

It's built upon a system of constant reiteration and hands on practice. I cover everything multiple times and we get plenty of time to have you practice each step as I go.

In the end, we also get enough time to work on your own personal files and I make sure that I answer every question you have.

Even after the course is over, if you have any questions at all, I am forever available to you to answer them.

 
 

1. The course itself is customized to you, not the other way around. If you've ever been in a classroom or a seminar setting, it's difficult to get personalized attention. This is getting your own specialized teacher.

2. Do you ever wonder why you see the professionals on your screen perform so well, but when you try to follow along, you seem to be missing that 'something' that prevents you from being able to work like they can?

Most of the magic in retouching is not the technique, but how each technique is executed behind the screen. Your settings, how you physically work, and other details matter. You need someone to be there to figure out where you may be lacking. With DVDs, you only get to see what's on the screen and not how they are working. It's like painting, if you only saw the canvas with paint being applied, it wouldn't be complete. Seeing someone work in front of you makes it crystal clear. It also allows me to see where each problem may lie when you work in front of me. You'd be surprised at what you're doing wrong without even realizing it!

3. Teaching you on your own setup allows you to retain more information. When you see me work on the same setup you work with on a daily basis, due to the familiarity of your surrounding area, the information is retained at a much faster rate.

4. Being a photographer as well, I can communicate with you in ways other retouchers cannot, thus allowing me to communicate techniques explained through the eyes of a photographer, and not just a retoucher.

5. Sometimes, problems are very specific to each person. Like going to a doctor, we find a diagnosis with what is holding you back in your workflow and cure any problems.

6. With DVD's, if you get stuck in a certain situation, you really can't ask any questions. This course is about you and it's unique because it is adjusted to fit your needs. You won't find this level of customization, personal care, and openness anywhere in any class, program, dvd, or tutorial.

 
 

The course itself is $875 for two full days plus the cost of travel (flight/stay/food). I fly to you and work on your own setup as mentioned above. I am based in Houston and would fly from my current location.

I find that two full days is more than enough time to grasp all the information needed at a comfortable pace.

The course can be taken on any Wednesday through Sunday of the week. For any questions whatsoever, or if you would like to take the course, get in touch with me at pratik@solsticeretouch.com.

If you would like to take the class with a friend, I offer discount rates as well. E-mail me to discuss those options.

If you would like to be kept on an e-mail list for potential seminars in your area, e-mail me to let me know as well.

I look forward to hearing from you soon!

 
 

Barrie Macleod - http://barriemacleod.com/ [Fashion, Beauty]

I have taken many courses over the years and have gone to many conferences.

There is one “major” difference when taking a course with Pratik and that is that “he truly cares”. He wants you to succeed 100% and he makes sure that happens.

This is not your normal course. Pratik is incredibly patient and he will make sure you understand the process by the time you leave the course and if you have memory problems he will even follow-up with you by email. He doesn’t hide anything either. He’s very generous with his valuable information… 

Bottom line, this is the best course I have ever taken.

Paul Burlingame - http://paulburlingamephoto.com/  [Weddings, Fashion, Art]

Pratik’s 2-day, in person course has changed the way I use Photoshop. Streamlined, simple and much more powerful. It is easy, intuitive, creative and avoids having to memorize long strings of commands with hard-to-find controls. Like a nice clear path through the jungle.

I’ve attended many courses before but this one has made the biggest actual difference, largely due to the personal approach and that fact that Pratik really cares about transferring the information to you. He emphasizes retaining what you’ve learned using just the right amount of repetition and by encouraging & being prompt and helpful answering follow-up questions.

I was impressed by how he tailored the material to address specific topics & challenges I’d encountered in my professional work. He is also a great resource for ideas on marketing your work and optimizing your computer set up and accessories.

Pratik is genuinely curious and interested in every aspect of the photographic process. 

Dan Lydiard - http://danlydiard.com/ [Fashion, Beauty]

The two days I spent with Pratik were an incredible experience. The techniques were easy to understand and yielded superb results. Most importantly he makes sure that you understand everything that is taught by telling you how and why a technique works. Further, he’ll have you demonstrate the techniques and help you feel comfortable with them.

Yaneck Wasiek - http://wasiophotography.com/ [Wedding/Fashion]

Last weekend I had a pleasure to be taught advanced high end retouching techniques by Solstice Retouch. 

So it was surprising that I was beyond excited when I was able to bring Solstice to Chicago for him to pass along some of his amazing knowledge and skills on a one-on-one workshop at my studio. Solstice is usually fully booked way ahead of time so I booked our weekend workshop as soon as he was available. I knew it would be a fantastic way to learn some advanced techniques but Solstice exceeded all my expectations. This guy is truly passionate about retouching, extremely friendly, easy going, and an extremely patient teacher.

The workshop was two days, Saturday and Sunday. The first day Solstice spent analyzing my portfolio, sharing some overall recommendations, watching me retouch, and then showing me his workflow and techniques. We started with proper workflow because without proper organization it’s very easy to create Photoshop anarchy of layers. I often end up with that anarchy so I knew this will help me a lot already. Surprisingly Solstice techniques are not extremely complex. 

The second day we spent Solstice watching me applying all the techniques we learned the previous day. I thought it would a be a boring day me sitting in front of my computer for endless hours. I was so wrong! This was fun! I was totally shocked how after couple of hours of Solstice sitting next to me and correcting me, my tablet painting skills got so much better. I definitely retouch now with a lot more confidence having the final look in mind vs experimenting with different techniques and seeing what I am going to end up with.

Ah… I forgot to mentioned that both my and Solstice passion for photography made us work Saturday from 10am till 2am and on Sunday from 10am till 11pm! 

Mark Kern - http://red5studios.com/ [Game Developer and CEO]

After I saw the iPhoto shoot on fstoppers.com, I knew I had to check out the retoucher on the project, Pratik Naik, founder and owner of Solstice Retouch.

When I went to his website, I saw a stunning portfolio of exquisitely retouched images. They had no tool marks, no over smoothing, no odd color casts…just perfect hair, skin and “naturalness” over a wide range of work ranging from avant garde fashion to sexy glamour shots.

I had to know more…

I called Pratik and asked if he could pass just a glimmer of his skill to me in a few days of teaching. He was more than obliging. After asking me about my photography preferences and current level of ability (rank amateur), he put together an entire program of study for me and agreed to fly down to Southern California to show me his magic.

I’m not a professional photographer, my background being video games like working on World of Warcraft and my latest project, Firefall. But I knew the basics of photoshop and was a serious amateur photographer experimenting with beauty and glamour photography. I knew Pratik had his work cut out for him!

Meeting Pratik, I could not imagine a friendlier, eager and patient teacher! He held nothing back, was open with all his techniques, and discussed the other approaches used by retouchers and their strengths and weaknesses. All training was hands on using my 27” iMac and Photoshop CS5.  

Pratik’s teaching style is a combination of demonstration and hands on learning. He would cover theory and then demonstration application, quickly turning the Wacom over to the student to see how much he had absorbed. It was intensive, and there was a lot of information, but Pratik always paced his lessons to my skill and was very patient answering questions and re-explaining things to me when I didn’t get them.

After just a couple days, I felt I not only had a solid foundation in retouching, but that I was doing so with an eye and attention for detail that I never imagined before. Pratik doesn’t just teach you technique, he teaches you to see, which is the most important part of the process.

I highly recommend Pratik for retouching and as an expert and excellent teacher!

Mark Kern
CEO, Red 5 Studios
www.firefallthegame.com 

 
 

For further information, please contact me directly at pratik@solsticeretouch.com

 
© Pratik Naik
www.retouchingclasses.com
pratik@solsticeretouch.com
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