Whether you’re a professional or an amateur photographer, there’s no such thing as simply snapping a few photos and calling it a day. A beautiful photo may be worth a thousand words, but there’s always a little bit of editing work that goes into it beforehand! Nowadays, there are a plethora of editing programs and techniques that can turn even the most simple snap into something truly eyecatching. But the best photo editing tip that any photographer should keep in mind is to experiment with their editing process until they nail down their own personal style.
If you’re new to photo editing, here are a few basic tips you ought to know.
1. The Most Important Photo Editing Tip of Them All: Save Your Originals
When it comes to photo editing, there are two terms all photographers must know: destructive and non-destructive editing. Destructive editing is harmful to your original images, which can be a major headache for photographers down the line.
Basically, this is where photo editing software saves edited photos over the original. This means you are no longer able to access or refer to the original photo if you’ve made an editing mistake.
Non-destructive editing software automatically preserves your original photos — check out this Luminar review for more on this type of software.
2. Tidy Up Your Images
Once you have saved your original photos and set those aside, it’s time to begin the basic editing process. Start by cleaning up and cropping your images. Always straighten your image according to the lay of the horizon. From there, you’re going to crop the image to improve its composition. In other words, remove distracting elements from the frame or reposition it to focus on the best elements.
Finally, you need to spot-clean your images. This includes the removal of unwanted or distracting items in the photo. Most editing programs offer a ”spot healing” tool for this purpose.
3. Perfect the White Balance
White balance refers to the different levels of color in a photo. Adjusting white balance is useful if the photo has an unwanted or unnatural color tone that throws it off.
By adjusting the white balance you can better calibrate the image and highlight natural, eye-catching colors. Most photo editing programs allow you to choose from preset modes to perfect the while balance of an image.
4. Tweak Exposure and Contrast Levels
Exposure allows you to lighten or darken a photo as much as needed. So, if an image is too dark, you can lighten it so that its details are more noticeable. Just beware of tweaking these levels too much, as this can result in a ”mottled” effect on the image. Adjust exposure levels with relative caution.
You can also adjust the contrast in an image to brighten or darken certain tones. Contrast helps to increase the amount of detail in an image or completely flatten it. Always shoot for middle contrast to avoid either of these extremes.
5. Sharpen Things Up
By sharpening your image, you can add a crisp, clean, and detailed finish. Most photo editing programs offer a sharpness tool that works on a scale from 0-100%. Always begin with a sharpness of 50%, then adjust accordingly.
Are You a Budding New Photographer?
A final photo editing tip to remember is this: once you’ve completed your editing, save your images, and set them aside. Take a break and go back to them later to examine them with fresh eyes. This is a great way to pick up on the details you may have missed before!
If you’re new to the world of photography and want to up your photo-taking skills, be sure to explore the rest of this site. You’ll find a range of topics on photography, top gadgets, entertainment, and, more.