Is it important to edit your photos? YES!!!
As you progress in photography you might start to want to look at editing your shots to bring the best out of them? Everyone is probably familiar with applying effects to pictures, whether it is black and white, or instagram style filters. Yes this can make your shots look ok, but once you seriously start enjoying your photography then you might seriously start wanting to edit them?
Well look at these next two images and maybe you will agree as to why?
So what did I change? Well to start with I leveled the shot, then I went about enhancing or fixing the bits that needed it, colour, tone, sharpness, and noise. As I shot in raw, all the information was captured by the camera, it just needed bringing out.
That is the million dollar question? Ok well maybe not a million dollars but it does have a million answers…
Shoot in RAW – To start with always try to shoot your pictures in RAW mode if using a DSLR, Mirrorless, or equivalent camera. This will allow you to edit/recover much more detail and light from your image.
Get good Software – This doesn’t mean it has to be expensive software, but something you are happy with. Most camera makers bundle some editing software with the camera you buy. This can often be great to start with. You will also find great software available for not a lot of money or even free online if you look. One of the early (and I still use it for some things) bits of software I used was ‘Corel Paintshop Pro‘, a great tool for beginners and professionals in my mind, as its easy to learn. If you want the best, then you can’t go wrong, in my opinion with Adobe Lightroom and, Adobe Photoshop, this is what I use. Now they do a pay annually/monthly scheme so it’s not extraordinarily expensive, in fact at time of writing Adobe had a special which worked out at £9.00 a month for UK users.
Experiment/Learn – Learn to use the software, play with it, or research on Google, and find ‘how to’s’ on what you want to achieve. This is how I learnt and how I still learn. Also don’t be afraid to ask people how they did it, if you see something you like. Join Flickr, for example, and join in with discussions or add new people to follow. There are many ways to find out more.
Cheat – Haha, well not really cheating but more making life simpler for you. There are a lot of plugins, or presets available out there for your chosen software. Find them and use them if you want. For example this site has some great Adobe Lightroom presets
Now, get on and do it, as you learn more the better results you might get? A personal example below, the duller one I edited about 6 months ago, and the brighter one just a few days before writing this. As you can see, there quite a difference…
Hopefully you can see what a difference a few months can make?