Why You Should be Familiar with Photo Editing

For any serious photographer, it is vital to be familiar with the process of editing photos. There are many out there who deem photo editing as a non-essential step of photography and even term edited photos as fake. What they fail to realize is that photo editing goes far beyond slamming filters on photos and making them look like graphic art rather than realistic pictures.

What Constitutes ‘Photo Editing’

The term contains a lot of information within itself. In the simplest of terms, any change you make to the visual aesthetic or character of a photo is termed as ‘editing’. Now, this does not have to be something that completely changes the look of your image, of course. It can be something as simple as changing the exposure, adding more contrast, turning a photo black and white etc.
So, we’re sure you can see right away why every photographer should know how to edit their photos because, let’s face it, getting a completely perfect photo right out of the camera isn’t often possible.

Types of Photo Editing to Try

Despite its simple definition, photo editing is a process that comprises of many possible steps. There are various types of editing you can practice to get the best result from your photos. You can also visit various websites that talk about tips and tricks of editing photos, detailing what steps you can follow and which photo editors you can use. For now, let’s take a brief look at the different ways you can edit your photos.

Basic Exposure Control: The first and simplest type of edits you can make in your images revolve around exposure and contrast control. The right exposure is key to creating the perfect photo, and it can really make or break your photo. Similarly, contrast plays a very important role in how punchy or muted your photo looks. If you don’t like editing your photos too much, you should be okay with simply adjusting the exposure and contrast.

Advanced Exposure Control: Most photo editing software out there allows you to take exposure control a step further by allowing you to tweak the highlights and shadows of your photos. If you find that your image is too overexposed or underexposed, adjusting these settings can help a lot in achieving a balanced exposure.

Color Control: An image’s colors are one of the most important factors you should take care of. During the process of editing, you can decide if you want to turn your photo black and white or keep it in color. You can also adjust the colors by making them more or less saturated, changing their tone by making them warmer or cooler, or even play around with the exact hues if you use a RAW editor.

Object Removal: Did you know you could remove unwanted objects from your photos with an image editor? The process is fairly easy with something like Adobe Photoshop and can go a long way in saving a shot that you may have thought of as useless because of something that popped up in your frame without you realizing it.

Selective Editing: If you feel like your photo is perfect except for that one small corner at the top right that needs some careful exposure control, you can use a selective editing tool in programs like Capture One or Lightroom to do just that. Selective editing makes the lives of photographers very easy, as they don’t have to worry about changing the look of an entire image simply to get one small area look better.

Filters and Effects: We hear so many photographers talking badly about the use of filters and effects, but the fact is that many modern photo editors come with excellent filters and presets that can be used as a base for all your subsequent photo editing. Filters are not just for Instagram to develop, nor are they just to make your photo look artificial. They can be used very tastefully to give your images a little extra kick if you’re short on time.

Pixel-Level Editing: And finally, if you are a hybrid of a photographer and graphic designer/illustrator, you’ll love Photoshop’s ability to allow pixel-level editing to completely change the look of your photos. This can be very helpful if you like taking your own photos for your digital artwork or simply can’t find the kind of image you are looking for in order to create the perfect digital landscape.

As you can hopefully see, photo editing is almost essential for every photographer to get to grips with. It’s not always just to make pictures look like they came out of a computer but is rather helpful in various situations, depending on your own personal needs. So dump your preexisting notions about photo editing as something bad or ‘wrong’, and get on with creating stellar photos!

What Are Camera Autofocus Points?

Modern cameras are seeing a constant improvement in their autofocusing mechanisms by using a large amount of autofocus points, among some major technological advancement. If you’ve never used a camera with autofocus points, or don’t know how to use them properly, this article will help you a great deal.

A Brief Description

When you use your digital camera to take a photo, you must have seen a number of small boxes appear on the viewfinder or the screen. These are called autofocus points, and they are used to get the best possible focus for your shot.

While using automatic focusing on your camera, you can tell which part of your image the camera is focusing at by seeing which autofocus points are lighting up. This is a great way to be sure that your camera is focusing on the part of the image that you want it to focus at.

Manually Selecting AF Points

While autofocusing systems on modern cameras are being improved every day, they can’t be accurate all the time. This is why you should manually set the AF points on your camera if you want it to focus on a very specific part of the image. Most cameras these days allow you to manually select either one focus point or a cluster of them. Both these options are useful in certain situations. For example, if you are taking a portrait, then choosing one point and placing it on the subject’s eye is going to give you the best focus. Similarly, choosing a cluster could be helpful in taking a group photo of people standing in a certain part of your frame.

 

Whichever camera you own, always remember to use the correct kind of focusing system for any given situation. This will ensure that you never miss a great shot because your camera decided to act up a little while trying to get the focus.

How to Clean Sensor Dust

For any photographer, having specks of dust ruin otherwise perfect photos is very frustrating. Luckily, there’s a very easy way you can get rid of this sensor dust without spending a lot of money.

Use your Camera’s Auto Clean Feature

Many of today’s DSLR cameras have a function inside them that can vibrate the sensor slightly to shake off the dust. This doesn’t work most of the time if you have a lot of dust on your sensor, but for basic cleaning it should do the trick.

Use a Pressured Air Can

To clean small amounts of dust that have found their way onto your camera sensor, all you need to do is use a pressured air can to blow it out. To do this, simply pop off the lens from your camera body, insert the nozzle of the air can slightly into the opening, and blow the air onto the sensor. Most types of dust will just be blown out of the body.

One thing to remember is to keep the camera facing downwards so that when you blow air into it, the dust falls down rather than going farther up into the body.

So you see how easy it is to clean your camera’s sensor? All you need are a few minutes of your time and an air can to blow that dust out of your precious DSLR.

What are Camera Drive Modes?

If you use a DSLR, you must be familiar with the different drive modes that can be used to take a photo. Today, we are going to take a look at how these modes affect the way a camera takes a photo.

Single Shooting

By default, your camera’s drive mode is set to Single Shot. This means that when you press the shutter button, the camera takes one shot. If you want to take another image, you just press the button again. This works in most everyday situations, and many people won’t need to change to another mode most of the time.

Continuous Shooting

If you are an action photographer or just like to take backup photos so you can later choose the best one, you should set your drive mode to Continuous or Burst. This allows you to keep pressing the shutter button and your camera will keep taking photos until you release the shutter.

Delayed Shooting

The third type of drive mode is a Timer or Delayed Shooting option. This is useful when you want the camera to be still after pressing the shutter for a long exposure shot, or if you simply want to join in on the family picture after pressing the shutter.

Remote Shooting

For cameras with compatible remotes, you can use the Remote Shutter option to take a picture through the remote control. This also helps in avoiding any kind of movement or vibration that could be caused in the camera when you press the shutter. It also helps in taking wildlife shots, where you may not want to get too close to the animal and scare it.

 

So there are the basic drive mode options that you can find on your DSLR camera. The next time you’re taking a shot, be sure to select the right kind of drive mode for that particular situation.