One of the things that helps photographers stand apart these days, in addition to the manner in which they capture an image, is the way they edit their images. For the most part, I tend to be a clean editor, meaning that I don’t apply a lot of manipulation to the image after the fact. I usually just clean up marks on skin, remove clutter that I wasn’t able to shoot around, adjust the sharpness, color and contrast, and that is about it. The clients who choose me, usually do so because of my clean, colorful style. Sometimes though, it’s fun to play around a bit and see what else can be done. I still want the subject of my picture to look like themselves so, no plastic skin or alien-light eyes here, but sometimes, changing just the tones of the image can give it a different mood. I’m going to post a bunch of different edits here and I would love to know which ones you dig, and which ones you don’t. You’re not going to hurt my feelings at all if you don’t like one. I purposefully put one in that I don’t care for because I was curious to see what YOU think!! This image was taken at a workshop hosted by my dear friend, Sara-Anne Caudle. She is a child and family photographer in Burlington, NC and she invited me to speak at her workshop on the technical aspects of camera gear. I geek out over that and so it was fun to share that with a group of people who were interested in that, too. She extended the invitation, asking me to stay for the model shoot and, while I stayed out of the way for the most part, I took this picture which I really loved. This girl was an amazing model!! She loved the camera and it loved her, too! So take a look at these different edits and tell me which one you like the best.
Here is the RAW version. I don’t shoot in JPEG for clients. Well, I do shoot RAW+JPEG but almost always work from the RAW image anyway. I do that because it gives me total control over the final result and, being the lovely control freak that I am, that’s just how I roll. :)
Here is the edit I would present to a client:
And here is the same image, edited by adding a bit of rosiness and some lens flare after the fact. I think this is fun to do from time-to-time with the right picture.
Here is a hazier edit.
And a black and white version:
Which Edit Do YOU Like Best?