Friday, August 10, 2012

minimal editing

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85mm 1.2 lens, ISO 160, 1/1000, f/2

I’ve been asked a lot about editing lately. How much time I spend on each photo? What sorts of changes I make to “fix” a photo? How different my blog pictures looks verses the original? Ironic because my stance on editing has changed so drastically in the past year.

Other than the occasional bout of boredom where I find myself practicing wild photoshop techniques, I don’t edit my photos beyond basic color correction and selective lightening/darkening. This wasn’t always the case. Once upon a time I didn’t feel I had a “good” photo unless I spent significant time “perfecting” it in photoshop. Thank goodness I got over that. Now I feel the opposite is true. The best photos are the ones I don’t have to change at all. Over the years I’ve tried to focus my main goal on shooting the photo the way I want it in the camera, which prevents me having to “fix” it later on in photoshop. I guess I’m one of those less is more types. The more I alter a photo, the more I feel I’ve messed with its integrity.

So the above photo is unedited. And I’d be okay with it just the way it is… (wow, I’ve come a long way to be able to say that!) But since I have a minute to spare, I’ll alter the color because it was an overcast day so his skin has a bit of a bluish cast. I’ll also lighten up his face and darken the background slightly to further separate him from the trees behind. And, yeah, while I’m at it I’ll remove the scratch above his right eye because I don’t really need to be reminded that he did a face dive into the table last week.

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Here’s a side by side.

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