Hi! My name is Anastasia Erokhina. I'm a professional retoucher, but I specialize in organization and automation of the retouching processes for e-commerce. That is – how to make other people make good quality images for online stores, and how to make them produce a lot of images – hundreds in a day.
I started my career as a humble retoucher in a tiny store that had a team of 6 people or so. After working for a few months and getting a basic understanding of the process, I quit working for a bigger company: Lamoda.ru, which offered me the position of a senior retoucher – the one responsible for the organization of the whole process. It was the biggest challenge of my life, and I took it with all the strength and skill I had. My five-year-long collaboration with Lamoda – the leading online fashion and beauty retailer in Russia, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan, was quite fruitful. Back then, it was just an ambitious start-up, and I basically created their retouching department from scratch. Despite being tough, it was probably the best job of my life. As a part of the Rocket Internet, I had the opportunity to collaborate with the biggest and best online-stores all over the world. I worked with Zalando, Dafiti, Iconic, Zalora, where we all shared knowledge and experience.
The photography team was in its initial stage of development and on the constant look-out for new image types and kinds. We retouched models, objects, flat lays, mannequins, everything. I started with four retouchers on my team, and when I left there were around thirty, working day and night shifts.
I left mostly because I wanted to give the team an opportunity to grow, which wasn’t the case while I was in control. Lamoda today is still thriving, and I am proud to say that the retouching system I developed turned out to be an excellent investment: millions of images are produced yearly, and the process is fast, neat and cost-efficient. An average retoucher on the team can produce more than 500 images daily, and I consider that to be a great result.
My next challenge was not about the number of images, but about the quality. I started working as a head of retouch in the largest fashion department store in Eastern Europe – TsUM. I was able to organize an efficient process in a few months. Even with the outstanding image quality that was demanded, my team and I were able to make 200 images on average, which is quite sufficient. You can't imagine how beautiful an invisible mannequin can look if you make an effort. I could open the website any time, pick a random image, and it would look great enough to be added to any catalogue retouching portfolio.
But no matter how well paid the job was, once the challenge was met – I lost interest. Organizing a retouching team's work is one thing while sitting in front of a computer and doing QA is another. I left the job to find another challenge and the search was neither difficult nor long: the biggest and the most detailed online course on catalogue retouching – the very one you find on this website. It's the only course of this kind available online!
You are able to learn the best methods and techniques from someone who dedicated ten long years to studying, inventing, developing and teaching e-commerce retouching, first in Russia, and now all across the world, thanks to the digital age.
My sincere gratitude goes to Tatiana Chebotareva, the founder of BlackBrushCrew — a retouching studio based in Moscow. Thanks to her financial help and guidance, Mindful Retouch meets the international retouching standards and will help you easily collaborate with clients from all over the world.