12 Posts of Christmas. An image of an iPad surrounded by presents. Text on the iPad says 7 photo edits.

12 Posts of Christmas. An image of an iPad surrounded by presents. Text on the iPad says 7 photo edits to represent 7 post-processing steps.

Taking nice photos is part of our day-to-day life, thanks to super-duper phone cameras and reasonably priced cameras. But how do you take your photographs to the next level? The answer is post-processing.

Here are a few easy steps to edit and improve your photos, whether they are photos you took at an event, or portraits, or landscape photos.

1. Only post the best photos.

I tend to go through my shots and pick the photos that I think will look best. You can either do this in your Finder/Explorer or photo editing software by using labels, star rating etc.

2. Crop and rotate.

Make sure you are happy with the composition of the photo. Is the photo straight? Where does the subject sit within the frame? Here is a brief video about the rule of thirds that you might find useful – https://youtu.be/A7wnhDKyBuM

3. Adjust exposure.

Exposing an image the right way is key in photography and sometimes the lighting conditions aren’t always ideal. Luckily this is a fairly easy fix if the photo only needs a bit of tweaking. You know you have the right exposure when all the elements in the frame look natural and well lit.

4. Add contrast.

Adjusting the difference between tones in the image can really help your subject stand out.

5. Add a Filter.

If you’re looking to give your image a “look”, most programmes have built-in filters that you can select and adjust the intensity of.

6. Adjust Vibrance and Saturation.

Both these elements have to do with colour brightness and how much colours pop out in your photo. The key with both is to keep the look of skin tones as natural as possible.

7. Add a Vignette.

A vignette is the progressive darkening of the edges of the photo. Whether you are using Instagram or editing software, you should be able to easily add a vignette, which is a great device to focus the viewers’ attention.

With all effects and adjustments, the key is to keep the photo looking as natural looking as possible. A useful way of seeing how the post-processing has changed your photo is to compare it to the original.

I personally love using Adobe Lightroom Classic CC – it’s a great and simple tool that has quite advanced features built-in. I find it extremely useful when picking the best shots and for batch edits, as it allows you to copy and paste settings to all photos with one click!

Here’s a cool article to help you find the right (and FREE!) photo editing software, tailored to your needs and experience: http://www.techradar.com/news/the-best-free-photo-editor

Don’t forget that we all have access to the LinkedIn Learning video library. You’ll find a number of great tutorials to enrich your knowledge about photography, photo editing, post-processing and lots more!

Further reading:

Top 10 Photography Tips

7 easy post-processing steps to make your photos stand out

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