YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

Women Discovers You Get What You Pay For After Trying Cheap Photo Retouching

It's generally accepted that you get what you pay for in this world, but I guess that depends on what you're buying.

When you're buying clothes, for instance, you might expect that a $60 pair of pants will last longer than a $30 pair, but that isn't always the case. That's a rip off if you're only looking for a functional pair of pants, but some folks are paying more for prestige and a designer's vision than just pants.

However, there are some services where the old aphorism seems to hold true. And as one woman discovered, photo retouching is definitely one of them.

Irene Rudnyk is a professional photographer and is certainly no stranger to Photoshop.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

However, once she saw how many photo retouchers are on Fiverr, a website for cheap services from freelancers, she got curious and decided to see what kind of work she could get on the cheap.

For this experiment, she decided to give each retoucher this photo to work with. Each of them received the same instructions.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

She told them to make the photo seem more vibrant, with the model's eyes seeming brighter and her hair seeming more red. She also wanted the results to look warm and autumn-like.

As she said in a YouTube video, she figured this would be an easy photo to work with because of how nice the model's skin is.

Irene also avoided any retouchers that seemed like they obviously wouldn't give her what she wanted based on their sample photos.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

For instance, whoever did this would be perfect if she wanted her model to look like a cartoon character whose head is too large for her body, but that wasn't the effect she was trying to achieve.

Eventually, she decided on three different retouchers — one who charged a quarter per photo, one who wanted $5, and one who wanted $10.

Technically, the retoucher she hired for a quarter followed her instructions, but that's about all we can say here.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

Her hair is definitely very red and in a different hairstyle, for some reason. However, the fact it looks like the model is wearing clown makeup isn't all that encouraging.

Irene’s reaction here pretty much says everything you need to know about the first candidate.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

Shocked, confused, shook, mildly disturbed… the list could go on! It's like somebody tried to morph the Wendy's logo and Ronald McDonald into one, terrifying mascot.

“Oh my God, honestly I’m just so shocked that I don’t know what to say.”

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

"My immediate thought was that she kinda look—she kinda looks like Shrek. I don’t know why,” she continued, pulling up a photo of Fiona from Shrek alongside a frog meme.

Irene literally could not stop laughing, “I’m sorry I just can’t stop, like, looking at this — this is so...interesting.”

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

To be fair, this definitely wasn’t as professional as it claimed to be. The thought of someone legitimately seeking out and paying for this service is cringe-worthy!

On to the next, though.

Irene was a little scared to see what the rest were like after that, but the $5 job wasn't nearly as strange.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

She decided that this one wasn't bad, exactly, but they didn't seem to throw any color into the model's hair and the skin looked a little too flat and fake.

Overall, her rating for this job was "Not bad, but not great."

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

“So the skin is interestingly not bad," she said as she zoomed into the model's face.

"They even like, added some kind of texture. They did make the eyes brighter, and did make the skin look quite perfect."

As for the $10 job? Well, that one had to grow on her a little.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

At first, she thought it was actually worse than the $5 job because the model's skin tones were off.

"I like the skin retouch, and he also made the eyes brighter, and he made the hair more red — the picture is very vibrant.”

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

What’s this? Good news?! Well, not quite.

“Her skintone is very red — her skin tones are really bad. Like, really, really bad," she said.

“I would never deliver something like that to my client with these kinds of skin tones.”

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

Irene didn’t completely hate it though, "The overall picture was really good!"

She concluded she she still wouldn't have paid another $10 to work with this retoucher again, though, and that she preferred the second retouch out of all three.

For comparison, she also posted her own edit on this photo.

YouTube | Irene Rudnyk

You might notice that the model appears sharper and her face has more definition in this image than in the other ones. This makes it more difficult to tell that there were even edits than any of the Fiverr jobs.

Despite this, the colors seem more vibrant, the hair has more red in it, and the image looks warm and fall-like.

Ultimately, Irene wouldn't recommend getting Fiverr touch-ups if you're a professional photographer.

However, she said the $5 and $10 work would be good enough for a hobbyist — which likely makes up most of the photography community.

h/t: Irene Rudnyk