However I must say, looking at the pic (ignoring the black lines), i really dont see how it is not 'smooth'... Hmm
WOuld u be able to send me the whole picture after gausian blur? 1 with the black lines, and one without? Just for comparison and also to train my eyes!
This is something that I've always been interested in (photo retouching), and I've never come across a tutorial that really gives this 'fashion-front-cover-look'. The technique i used is basically a gausian blur, then set opacity to a level that satifies. Gives a really nice soft look. Your result seem to retain facial definitions and really a flawless skin.
The airbrushing smoothes out whatever the gaussian blur leaves behind. Yea, the difference is very subtle, I'll try to make you a comparisson picture when I get to my home comp. (give me 4-5 days).
Retaining the facial definitions is the result of erasing the gaussian blur layer in areas of sharp detail and then hand-brushing that area until flawless. The smaller the work area - the smaller the brush size.