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How to Become A Professional Photo Retoucher?

A professional photo retoucher can convert a dull photo to an excellent-looking image.

Professional Photo Retouching skills can assist a photographer to showcase his talent and get more clients. You can increase your demand as a photographer if you have that skill.

Most beginners are confused about how to become a professional photo retoucher. Through this article, I am going to guide you on how to grow yourself to become a photo retoucher.

What Does a Photo Retoucher Do?

First of all, let me start by describing the task that a photo retoucher has to do. The major task of a retoucher is to do Image Retouching. A photo retoucher uses different types of image editing software to retouch an image and bring the best version of that image.

Image retouching isn’t limited to one or two particular segments. A professional retoucher has to fix all sorts of errors and make further corrections to beautify a photo start building your business.

Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom are two common choices of every professional image retoucher. The primary task is to enhance the beauty so that it looks perfect from every aspect.

They have to make color adjustments, fix unnecessary marks, erase blemishes, shadow adjustments, brightness adjustments, sharpness adjustments, etc. For retouching different types of photos, a retoucher has to adapt himself so that he can bring the best form of a photo.

Difference between a digital retoucher and a photo editor

The main difference between a digital retoucher and a photo editor lies in their work objective.

A photo editor may have to do corrections like background removal, image restoration, image manipulation, image cropping and resizing, etc. The main duty of a photo editor is to make alterations and corrections based on the requirements.

A digital retoucher’s job is to apply different techniques to beautify a picture. Some common tasks of a digital retoucher are fixing blemishes on a photo, retouching skin, removing red eyes, color and sharpness adjustment, etc.

On the other hand, the task of a photo editor has more diversity. Overall, a digital retoucher has to make necessary changes to present an image perfectly.

At this stage, you have got an idea about the job responsibilities of a photo retoucher. Now, it’s time to get introduced to the steps of how to become a photo retoucher.

4 Steps to Follow to Become A Professional Retoucher

Those 4 steps given below will help you to become A freelance photo retoucher.

Step 1: Learn academic & practical knowledge of retouching

In the beginning, you need to have proper academic and practical knowledge related to photo retouching. According to the survey, more than 68% of professional photo retouchers have a Bachelor’s degree.

If you have a degree related to Photography, Art, or Graphic Design, that will assist you to get hired quickly as a professional retoucher.

Along with having Academic knowledge, you should also focus on applying the technique practically. You need to work on different types of photos such as Ecommerce Product Photo Retouching, jewelry retouching, car photo retouching, real-estate photo retouching, etc.

From where you could get some samples? You can have a look at E-commerce websites and other stock photo websites to get an idea of how your pictures should look after retouching. Once you have done all of that work, you can proceed to the next step.

Step 2: Do internship & create a portfolio

Secondly, you have to do an internship and create your portfolio/sample so that you can attract clients and graphic designing companies to hire you. You might be thinking about where you should do an internship.

Well, you have several options for that. You can do an internship in a studio. Besides, you can also work as an intern in a Professional Image Editing Service Provider Company.

Also, you can offer free image retouching for your portfolio purpose. If you retouch images perfectly, you can get your first client straight away.

To promote your portfolio, you can create a website and upload your retouched images there. Also, you can create a Facebook page to publish your photos. Eventually, it will encourage you to become a retoucher.

Step 3: Practice, practice and practice

In the third step, you have to practice more and more to master the technique of Photo retouching. Along with Adobe Photoshop, you should also retouch images on Adobe Lightroom.

Work on different types of photos and do experiments with random techniques. It will give you an overview of which technique works best for a particular image.

Also, you should cover your portfolio with different types of photography. You can retouch jewelry products, e-commerce products, fashion accessories, garments items, handmade accessories, and transparent objects.

Don’t limit yourself to a particular niche. You should work on various niches while practicing image retouching. That will help you to make more money in the future.

You can also join photoshoot sessions and talk to professional photographers. Alongside, talk to different people who are connected with photography. You can ask them about their requirements when it comes to image retouching.

Step 4: Apply for retouching jobs

Ultimately, you can start applying for photo retouching jobs. You can join Photo Editing Service Provider Companies or Studios as a professional photo retoucher.

If you have good skills in image retouching, it won’t be a tough task to find your first job. Besides, you can also work as a freelance Image Retoucher. In that case, you have to promote your image retouching skills.

While applying for a Professional Photo Retoucher’s job, you have to keep several things in your mind. When you are looking for your first job, you should be more focused on those jobs posted for freshers. Hopefully, by following those 4 steps you will become a professional photo retoucher.

The tools every commercial photo retoucher should get first

In that section, you are going to get introduced to some of the best tools that every commercial photo retoucher should get first. Using those tools, you will be able to retouch images seamlessly and more professionally.

Adobe Photoshop

Whenever it comes to professional image retouching, you have to get and learn Adobe Photoshop. There are several versions available of Photoshop. You might be wondering which version you should start with.

Adobe Photoshop

Well, there is no particular answer for that. But it is better to start with the latest version. According to the expert image retoucher’s opinion, Adobe Photoshop CC will be the best choice for photo retouching.

In the latest version of Photoshop, you’ll get more features and image editing tools to retouch an image with more freedom. Also, object selection tasks are easier in the latest version compared to previous versions.

Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom is another powerful image editing application that a professional photo retoucher needs to learn. To become a professional photo retoucher, you need to have good drab on several image editing applications.

Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom is the second option on that list. Besides, it comes with some excellent default image retouching tools. Combining those tools you should be able to make your image look perfectly retouched and enhanced.

Specifically, Lightroom is useful for high-end photo retouching, new-born photo retouching, E-commerce product retouching, Jewelry retouching, and car photo retouching

Nik Collection

Nik Collection is a plug-in used for image retouching and image beauty enhancement. With the help of the Nik Collection, you can retouch images quickly and enhance the details of an image.

Moreover, you can add Nik Collection to photoshop. Some beginner retouchers question, “is the Nik Collection compatible with Photoshop 2022?” Yes, you can use the Nik Collection plug-in with Photoshop 2022.

Those photo editing applications and the plug-in will improve your professional image retouching experience. Now, I am going to clarify a myth about professional image retouching.

Do i need to be a photographer first?

Some folks think that only a photographer can become a professional photo retoucher. But it’s not the reality. It’s not mandatory that you need to be a photographer first to become a professional retoucher. Surprisingly, professional photographers don’t retouch their photos on their own.

Therefore, you can become a professional retoucher without being a photographer first. At the same time, professional photographers don’t need to have photo retouching skills mandatory.

Then, how can they retouch their photos? Well, it will be a wise decision to outsource Image Retouching Service from a professional Image Editing Company. That will keep the picture quality high.

At the same time, they can save valuable time. Why are you waiting? You can start with a free trial from Clipping Way. Hopefully, you will find the best version of your photography.

What kind of retoucher should i be?

You have several options to choose from when you’re eager to be a professional photo retoucher. Are you getting confused about what kind of retoucher you should be?

Alright, permit me to introduce you to different types of photo retouching categories so that you can choose the suitable option for you.

Ecommerce product photo retoucher

E-commerce product photo retouchers have a high demand nowadays. As the E-commerce industry is getting bigger day by day, it will be easier for you to get tasks for this type of retouching. Do you have an interest in E-commerce product photo editing?

Photo Retouching Service

Then, you should try to be an E-commerce Product Photo Retoucher. There are plenty of opportunities to be successful in this field. Hopefully, you will be able to grab the best one.

Jewelry photo retoucher

Jewelry photo retouchers have to retouch jewelry photos so that the product looks perfect, glowing, and appealing. Without retouching jewelry, the product doesn’t look much appealing in the photo.

Jewelry Retouching Service

If you choose to be that type of retoucher, you have to learn to utilize different tools of photoshop such as dodge and burn tool, clone stamp tool, brush tool, and RGB adjustment.

Car photo retoucher

Car selling industries are also shifting towards online. In 2021, more than 27% of car selling deals were completed online. You can be a car photo retoucher to grow yourself in this fast-growing sector.

Car Photo Retouching

Demand for car photo retouching is also increasing gradually. The average price of car photo retouching is higher compared to jewelry retouching.

Clothing & fashion accessories retoucher

Last but not the least, clothing and fashion accessories such as sunglass, cap, bag, hat, dress, shoe, and ornament photo needs to be retouched before uploading online.

Fashion Accessories Retouching

You can also become a clothing and fashion accessories retoucher to showcase your image retouching skills. Demands are also high for this type of retouching.

Now, you have to take some time to think about which niche you feel more comfortable working on. Then, you can decide with ease what kind of retoucher you should be.

Photo retoucher career at Clipping Way

Clipping Way is one of the best Image Editing Companies across the globe. If you have proper skills in Image Retouching, Clipping Way can be the best destination for you as a photo retoucher.

You can mail your CV and portfolio to start your career at Clipping Way. If they’re satisfied with your skills, they will respond to you for further discussion.

Final Words

Do you still have any questions related to how to become a professional photo retoucher? Feel free to contact us with your queries.

Also, you can contact us for Professional Image Retouching Services. We can deliver 3500+ images per day. Get a free quote now to get special discounts.


What is the average salary of a professional photo retoucher?

In the United States, a professional photo retoucher earns around $60000 per year.

What is the role of a photo retoucher?

A photo retoucher mainly has to retouch images to adjust color tone, saturation, brightness, contrast, and fix other factors that look imperfect.

What does photo retouching mean?

Photo retouching is the procedure of improving an image composition, color adjustment, and fixing errors.

What is the best app for retouching photos?

Adobe Photoshop is highly recommended by experts as the best app for image retouching.

How can i make my pictures look professional?

You can make this happen by applying image retouching to your photos.

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