So I went to this awesome thing called The Color Run- “the happiest 5k on the planet”– and after the marathon was over, there’s a Finish Festival; everyone just throws colored powder at each other…. it was so cool!!!! (and, it gave me so many photo opportunities!) Unfortunately, being the scatter-brain that I am, I forgot to bring my camera. I was really upset with myself on the drive up there when I realized what I had done! So, I ended up just using my smartphone. I knew I wouldn’t get as great a photo, but I was actually pretty surprised with my results. I have a few editing apps on my phone, so as soon as I had the chance, I set right to it. I “auto-fixed” the photo, which usually gets rid of that filmy look that some photos have when there is poor lighting, and increased the saturation, which made the colors stand out a lot. When I got home, I edited on my beloved Picmonkey, and I loved what I came up with!
I always fix the general lighting, saturation, shadows, contrast, etc, but I haven’t been adding actual effects as of late. For me, the main difference between fixing a photo and adding effects to a photo is this:
Fixing a photo:
When fixing a photo, I’ll make sure to make that filmy look decrease by playing around with the brightness, highlights, shadows, and contrast. If the photo isn’t that bright, I’ll naturally increase the brightness, while making sure to adjust the shadows accordingly. There’s always too much of a good thing, though, so be careful not to put the brightness on overkill. No one wants to be blinded!
If I want to highlight the photo, I’ll remember to bring balance by adding some natural looking shadows. Shadows don’t mean the shadow that you would see by putting your hand in front of a flashlight; I’m referring to “contouring” the photo in the right places, almost, like you would contour cheekbones with makeup to make the face narrower or sharper than it actually is. The same kind of thing with a photo applies.
Contrast makes individual colors stand out. I guess that’s pretty self explanatory so I won’t delve in to that subject……
This, to me at least, has its differences from “fixing”. Adding an effect can seriously change the overall look of a photo. With the photo attached, I added Bokeh sparkles. Without them, the photo would look pretty different. In the original photo, my eye looks pretty dull, almost like I look tired. By adding color around the eye, it doesn’t look as “dull”.
You can usually adjust effects; I chose the amount of sparkle. I also added some eye color tint. My natural eye color is more hazel-green, but I added some green-blue hues. Again, I chose how dense the color would be. It’s really not that hard, you need might need to have a little patience to find the perfect proportion.
Don’t be afraid to experiment!
I added eye color hues to the entire photo, not just the eye! (That’s my dirty little secret to getting a different look about my photos; I’ll take advantage of what some effects can do, meaning I’ll use them for things they weren’t created to be used for.)
I tried to explain my general editing “staples”, and I hope you guys can learn, somewhat!
Happy reading, and shooting, Sarah
P.S. If there’s anything that you would like to see me write about, leave your suggestions in the comments!