How do I use Photoshop to make someone look less fat?

How do you slim someone down in Photoshop you ask?

This was a challenge that was posed to me the other day, and I wasn’t sure of the answer myself. I hadn’t ever tried to take a photo of someone with clothes on, in a group of other people, and make them look a little less fat. The camera adds 10 lbs and all that rot.

Well, I did some searching. Tutorials in Photoshop on “slim”, “fat”, and “weight”. I found a tutorial that spoke about making someone look more fat, but the principal was the same. They suggested a lot of patience, some skill, and use the liquify tool.

The liquify tool is under the “Filter” menu in Photoshop. You can also access it by this shortcut;

Ctrl + Shift + X = Liquify Tool

The idea is to drag the existing person’s boundaries inwards to make them smaller. Now, my subject was on a darker background, with darker clothes. So, I think I got lucky with this challenge. The darker colors would mask more inconsistencies and “drag” lines when working with this tool.

But basically, make the brush size large enough to try to avoid getting blurring drag lines and start pushing pixels in.

Here is a snippet of that other tutorial that I found. It is a multipage document…

A good place to start is the face. The best tool for enlarging the contours of a face is the liquify tool. The brush size is important. A larger brush will create less ‘drag lines’ but naturally will give you less control than a smaller one. You’ll have to experiment a bit here to choose the right size for your job but my rule of thumb is to use the largest size brush that will still give you the control you need.

Set the brush just inside the outer line of the flesh contour and carefully pull the flesh outward to the amount desired. You’ll have to repeat that around the entire area you want to enlarge and adjust brush sizes accordingly. Patience and care are virtues here.

If you want to find the full tutorial, I am not going to provide a full link, but search on Worth1000.com for a tutorial called “Fattening Folks” and you should find some more pages of walk through as well as visual examples of what you may get when slimming or adding fat to people in Photoshop.

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