I do billboards for a local attorney who has been around a long time. This year he had new headshots taken to include on his billboards. He instructed me to “take 30 years off” his headshots. After tastefully photoshopping his face to remove wrinkles, he insisted that I remove more. So I did. More! So I did. MORE! At this point, he looked like a plastic surgery nightmare.
Client: What happened to my expression? I’m supposed to look serious in this photo.
Me: Well, sir, you had me remove the crinkle from your eyebrows, which is what really helps define your expression. I suggest we add that along with some of the other expression lines back in so that we get that emotion.
Client: Can’t you keep it looking serious without any lines at all? You know what, now that I’m looking at this, it looks awful. It doesn’t even look like me! You need to make it look more like me, and make it look serious, but without any lines. Why can’t you do that?
Me: Because that’s not how people’s faces work!