..How I edit my photos..

December 12, 2017

First of all- I'd just like to say that yes, I am really rubbish at keeping up with a blog but I am going to really try to post much more - dare I even say once a week? We will see what happens.

This blog post is going to be about how I edit my photos after a photo-shoot with before and after shots too.


As much as I love taking a photo, going to rural locations, with the best lighting you could imagine and with the best team of people- there is nothing I love more than editing and the post-production side of things. Like I said in my first blog post- it is literally one of my favourite things to do.


Every photographer has different techniques and their own way of editing so here is mine. 


I open up Photoshop and start with the most obvious which is changing the exposure and lighting. As you can see in the photo below of Lucie from our Redwood Girls shoot; it is rather dark. 



I begin with using Curves to generally lighten the image.

Following this, I move straight onto any imperfections on the models face or body which is where I use the Clone Tool. 
For me (and probably most photographers) the most important tool which brings everything together is the colours.

Selective Colour is  e v e r y t h i n g! I absolutely love this tool. 
Every shoot is different in terms of what colours I use and depending on the lighting too. Generally, I tend to make the whites a cool bluey colour- I don't know why, I just like it! 
The neutrals again depends on what sort of mood the photos are. In this particular shoot, I used greens and a little bit of red. 

And finally for the blacks, I usually use reds however in this shoot, I used more darker colours such as blue and purple hues. Following this, I used the Dodge Tool to brighten up the green plant that is covering Lucie's eye and also brightened up her eyes too.

Finally, I edit the lighting a little more and then whack on a photo filter to finalise the photo. 



Next is a photo of Lydia from our Elsie & Fred shoot. 

The same routine is followed mostly for this photo. 


Beginning with the lighting which is basically just so I can actually see what I'm doing with the photo.

I wanted this set of photos to be really bright and colourful so I really enhanced the flowers by going into Selective Colour and upping the yellows.

Another thing that I do quite a lot is change the colours of green particularly if it's leaves, grass, stems etc. I like desaturated/less intense greens. Anyone who has ever shot with me before will know that I love green especially when it's green plants/nature. I love editing greens and like to create an almost unrealistic green... (don't ask me why, I just think it looks cool). 

After I edited any imperfections out, I used the Quick Selection tool and selected the petal by the right eye and then copied the layer. After using the Clone Tool to edit out the petal that I didn't want there, I moved the new petal into position in line with the petal by her left eye. I brightened the eyes right up and all I do is use the Quick Selection Tool to select the irises and then use Levels to my desired brightness. Sometimes, not very often, I will use the Dodge Tool to highlight certain parts of the photo and for this one, I dodged the bow of her lips and below her bottom lip. The final step I always take with the editing of a photo is the Sharpening Tool and give the photo a quick sweep not focusing on particular points at all as I wouldn't want to over-sharpen it.

Once I thought that I was finished with this photo, I kept looking at it again and again and had a niggling which was the necklace and vest strap. They had to go.

I am a huge, huge perfectionist and if I don't like something I will simply remove it, so I used the Clone Tool and got rid of that problem. 



The next photo is of Jordi for my 'The Mermaid of Zennor' University Module.

These photos as a whole were really challenging and at times so unbelievably annoying to edit. 

It took me days and days to finally finish them and even longer until I was finally happy and accepted them.



I began with my usual routine of editing, the lighting, colours and imperfections. On the before photo, you can see how my MUA (Rosie's Wonderland) applied a prosthetic, scaly chest. I used the Clone Tool to soften the edges to make it look more natural as if it were her real skin. Once I was happy with that, I moved onto the hardest thing that I've ever had the pleasure of editing which was the tail.

That bloody tail! I was seeing it in my dreams- it frustrated me a ridiculous amount. The hardest part was trying to merge the top of the tail into her stomach so that it looked like it was actually a part of her instead of it being straight across. I wanted it to look as real as it possibly could. 
I also had to remove any wrinkles in the tail which was of course, difficult too as I didn't want to disrupt the pattern of the scales and make it look really badly edited.

After that was finally complete, I used the Liquify Tool and changed the shape of the fin- this was probably the easiest part. 


So there you have it, I hope that gives some insight into how I edit my photos and was interesting to read.











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