Photographing the Milky Way

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Behind the Scenes | Retouch Art and Bringing Dreams to Life with Von Wong

By Jules Ebe on May 17th 2013

Today we bring you the final image from the Von Wong Does Europe Tour. Congratulations to Ben and Erwin on a great concept and successful tour. You did a fabulous job and we are so excited to have been part of the journey!

The First and The Last


The very first photo shoot of the tour also became the last image to be released. But we are definitely glad we waited. The photo was based around Belgium Retouch Artist Chester Van Bommel. I can only image the pressure of retouching a portrait of a professional retoucher. It is a fine art that goes far beyond technical skills of the average Photoshop user.

“I learned through this process that it wasn’t about the new techniques, about which buttons to click. What really mattered was the vision behind it. As a creative, you want people to hire you because you are an artist, not because you are a technician.” ~ Von Wong

Behind the Scenes – Bringing Dreams to Life | The Mind of a Retoucher

Setup and Post-Processing Retouch

The more work done in camera during the photo shoot, the better chance you will be able to realize the image during the post-processing phase.

When shooting a large space, avoid distortion created by wide-angle lenses by stitching together several shots using a prime lens. For this image, Von Wong used a Nikkor 50mm f1.8 on a tripod with his Nikon D700 . This allowed the vastness of the space to be communicated without making it look malformed.



When a space has a lot of natural lighting, from say – missing a roof, additional lighting can be accomplished fairly easily. Here you see a pair of speed lights in a soft box as a backlight and an umbrella as front fill to light the subject. Additional frames were taken without the subject with the speed lights on the floor to light the arches for more definition and depth.


But that is only the beginning. After 60 hours of retouch work and a massive 8Gb+ Photoshop file, the concept was built piece by piece, literally. The results – dreamlike.


To see more from this photo shoot, click here.

For the Gear Heads

Nikon D700
Nikkor 50mm f1.8
SIRUI T-2205X (
Pixel Pawn
Explorer Mini Battery Pack by Innovatronix

Photography and Retouch: Von Wong and Chester Van Bommel from Artsome
Video: Erwan Cloarec – Visuals

Until Next Time . . .

Stay Inspired ~ Jules

CREDITS: Photographs by Von Wong have been used with permission for SLR Lounge. Do not copy, modify or re-post this article or images without express permission from SLR Lounge and the artist.


is a Southern California based Conceptual Artist and Photographer. Her work has been featured in several print publications and selections can be seen in local gallery exhibitions. Connect with her on Facebook and Google+.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Joseph Prusa

    Very nice.

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  2. Murra

    Wow! totally admiring the work! the eagles are awesome :D

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