I have to admit, I really struggled with this one. The lighting in the original was so bad that I practically had to paint half of her skin back on, and I can never make that look 100% natural. See what I mean:
The left side of the picture is completely blown out, and the right side completely underexposed. I immediately knew that the only way this photo could work would be to make it monochrome, so that the colours of the lightened shadows on the little girl's arms and back couldn't be seen. I also had to soften this area a lot.
This is what I came up with:
I have to admit, I'm not blown away by it, but it's better. I hate oversoftening that results in images looking like they were taken through gauze, so I tried not to go that far!
And I can't list what I did, because in the end I think I used about thirty different actions on this one, not to mention all the cloning for the skin! The major thing is that I made it B&W, warmed it up with a little cinnamon toast from TRA, and softened using Super Fun Happy and something else, painting back the bits I didn't want soft, and then added contrast, painting back the bits I needed to keep soft! Oy.