"You just click a button."
"You're fancy camera takes great pictures." "I can get the same thing with my iPhone."
Above are all things that will make any photographer give you a hard eye roll or a pasted on smile. We hear it often. We know it's usually an unintended insult and some don't totally understand all we do. And yes, your newest iPhone does take pretty good pictures, but please leave the beautiful images to a professional. 😬 (*note this is not to start an argument that you cannot take professional images with an iPhone.)
I wanted to share a before and after from one of my latest portrait sessions I did with a friend of mine, Lindsey. After excitedly importing the images from her session, I skimmed through them to cull out obvious imperfect images - the blinks, the blurs (hey, I'm human too! 😉), and stumbled upon this instant favorite of mine.
The straight out of camera (SOOC) image is dark, and underexposed - I often photograph that way to help capture all the details in the skies. Nikon (#teamNikon) is great at low-light situations & recovering detail from shadows. It was also right at sunset, if not a few minutes after at this point. It was DARK for us to photograph. I was able to maintain camera focus using off camera flash from a friend/lighting assistant holding a speed light with a MagMod diffuser on it.
I hand edit every image. It can be time consuming, but I enjoy it - its like therapy for my creative soul. Hand editing helps me bring ideas to reality, adjusting images to meet my ideas and enhance their beauty. In this one I chose to get rid of the dirt road and turn it into a rolling hill of grass. I brightened it up, made her really pop and warmed this image up a little bit while adding my editing style to this image. It's through experimenting and studying my craft that I'm learning techniques to be able to give clients beautiful work that I'm overly proud to share.
As photographers, our editing styled are learned through many, many hours of studying our craft through workshops, online courses, and lots of practice. Continuing education is one of the many overlooked things we as professional photographers do. We're constantly pushing ourselves to become better behind the curtain of a client's view. "You can photoshop that, right?" is a frequent question we get, but little understand the magic it takes to make that "quick fix" happen. I'm new into the editing and manipulation world of photography - I use it to enhance and adjust factors, but as I learn, I'm eager to be able to do more for my clientele. With a goal of creating fine art portraits to adorn walls and family albums, I'll strive to continue to bring clients the best skills I can provide. From weddings to high school senior portraits, you can trust we'll create some awesome images together.
For this session, between the giggles, and the badassery (which cannot be argued - look at her! 😍), we had fun bringing an idea and theme to fruition. Post editing helped achieve the idea even more. I'll be sharing more of these soon - she'll have her own blog post of more of the final images, along with some (more) being shared on social media.