Norma Bates Transformation - J. K. Ribout Photography

October 14th, 2016

Hello! And thank you for stoping by my blog.

I was thinking for a while that I would like to do a blog post about Photoshop and show you a fun little project that I decided to do. 

This blog entry is all about Norma Bates. If you aren't familiar with who Norma Bates is, she is a character on the TV Show Bates Motel. Bates Motel is a prequel to the classic horror film (directed by the awesome Alfred Hitchcock) Psycho. I would highly recommend watching it as it is one of those shows that keeps you on your toes and is just in general pretty amazing.

Norma Bates is played by one of my favourite actresses, Vera Farmiga. She does such a great job with this character and I decided to pay homage to her by playing around in Photoshop and seeing what I could come up with.



This is the image I started with. I took this photo a little while ago so I had to deal with some minor problems with the image as I started my editing - one of them being the fact that there is very little light on my eyes, making it a bit more difficult to turn them blue. 


So Norma Bates has very light blond hair, blue eyes, and the shade of lipstick in this image didn't really fit the overall feel. Those were the main elements that I focused on from the get-go.

The first thing I did was add a new Layer then used the Brush tool to paint over my hair with a colour that I found would best match Norma's hair. Then, I switched the mode of the layer to Overlay to make it blend with the hair. Finally, I used a Layer Mask to erase the parts of the image that shouldn't be coloured that way.

Next, I played around with the eye colour. First, I added a new Layer and painted a light blue colour on the eye and switched the mode to Hue. Then, I saw that it still wasn't as bright as I wanted it to be, so I added another Layer and painted in some white under the blue layer. I then lowered the opacity so that it wasn't too prominent.

After that, I played with the Colour Balance and Hue of the image to make it a bit more moody and cold in temperature.


Next, I added a bit more makeup to my face by adding some new Layers and then using the Brush tool to paint on additional colour. I used a dark blue colour for the eye and a dark pink for the cheek. I then changed the mode to Hard Light.

After tweaking the hair and eyes and adding additional makeup features, I play around with the hue and colours to make the hair more blonde and to make the lips a bit more of a pink rather than a red. Once I did that, I felt that the overall feel of the image was still a bit too warm. If you Google promo images of Norma Bates for Bates Motel, You will see one particular one (click here) that has more of a cold feel to it, so I wanted to try and emulate that. I also wanted to match the makeup a little better, so that was the final step. 

After doing all that, I tweaked the image a bit more by darkening some shadows and further changing the temperature of the overall image. This is the final image. And though I know that I am no Norma Bates, I think I did a pretty good job at accentuating the characteristics and shades of the portrait itself. 


Thank you for reading!

I hope you enjoyed this little behind the scenes view on how I transformed into one of my favourite characters.


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