Anyone who spends even the smallest amount of time around me has heard the words, “I need to edit.” I spend hours in the library or Starbucks making the photos that I take absolutely perfect for my clients. I’ve recently gotten several questions about my editing process, so I figured it was time for me to explain how and why I spend time editing your photos. This is an important behind the scenes process that a lot of my friends and clients don’t get to see.
Why do I need to edit your photos?
During your session, I do my best to put you in the right lighting and the perfect pose, but sometimes the camera doesn’t portray that correctly. This is a result of a few different things: shooting RAW images pulls some of the color out of a photo, we may be shooting in less than ideal conditions (bright sun, low lighting,etc.), or the exact look I want simply can’t be achieved straight out of camera. Additionally, I want to ensure that ALL of my photos resemble my personal style to create a cohesive portfolio and to give clients the style of photos they’re expecting when they book me.
The photo below is an example of a beautiful photo straight out of camera and then edited to fit my style. We were shooting while a storm was approaching, so it was super cloudy. I added a little light because as a photographer, I’m not going to sacrifice my style and my client’s expectations due to a little bad weather.
The editing process is important to my creative expression. Yes, I do my best to expose well and get everything right in-camera. However, editing allows me to play with light, sharpen my style, and give my clients nothing but the absolute best images. For example, as you may be able to see, I’m obsessed with contrast. That’s something that can only truly be perfected during post processing. The need for editing isn’t a bad thing, and it doesn’t mean that your images weren’t beautiful in their original form. It just means that I believe they can be made even BETTER, and I want your final gallery to be as perfect as I can make it.
For this reason, I never give my clients straight out of camera (SOOC) images because I want them to receive a higher quality than that. Your investment deserves images that are carefully crafted from the start of your session to the layout of your final gallery. I do my best to ensure that your final images are everything you were hoping for!
Below are some screenshots of before and after images in Lightroom:
Do YOU have any other questions about how and why photographers edit? Leave them in the comments below!