Don’t Over-Edit Your Photos! – Weekly Edit Season 2 Episode 3

Camera Raw May 7th 2013 1:10 PM 3 Comments

In this episode of Weekly Edit from SLR Lounge, we are going to process a suburban landscape image of a beautiful foggy sunrise.  Mainly, we are going to talk about how to avoid over-editing your images, which is a common issue with any photographer who is just starting out in photography.

The Video

The Original Image

Nature Photograph

As you can see, the original, un-edited RAW image looks quite nice all by itself, even with every setting “zero’d” out.  Really, what do we need to do to this image?  Aside from maybe correcting a slight crop and/or removing a sensor dust spec or two, the image doesn’t need much.  However if you’re just starting out with a bunch of killer new workflow tools, maybe some presets for either in Bridge or Lightroom, …you might be tempted to go to town.  Here is what the image might look like if we took the time to tweak every single slider at our disposal:

The Over-Processed Image

Nature Photograph

Does it look okay?  I suppose so, and maybe some photographers will prefer this edit, with good shadow detail, well-preserved highlights, and plenty of saturation. Personally, I feel that the image is flat.  It doesn’t properly represent the scene and the mood of such a beautiful foggy sunrise.  Therefore, I prefer this version:

The Final Image

Nature Photograph

Unless you look at them side by side, (watch the video!) you might not even be able to notice a difference between this processed version and the original, un-edited version.  Well, I like the subtle tones, colors, and deep shadows!  All I did to this image was give it a small boost overall, a slight nudge to the shadows and highlights, a little extra contrast, vibrance and clarity, …and that’s it.

Conclusion

If you’re just starting out with photography, or if you simply have just begun using a new workflow tool, remember that there is often a “novelty factor” that causes you to get excited and go a little too far.  This is often the case with other things as well, such as new lenses or other equipment.

So, just remember to keep your vision in check.  Sometimes, less is indeed more.

Take care and happy clicking!

Advertisement

About

Matthew Saville is a full-time wedding photographer at Lin & Jirsa Photography, and a senior editor & writer at SLR Lounge. Connect with him on Google Plus

3 Comments

  1. Joshee

    I was not aware that we can use presets in bridge. Thank you for the great session

  2. How To Preserve A Saturated Sunset In Your HDR Images – Weekly Edit Season 2 Episode 5 | Photography Tutorials and Lightroom Tutorials by SLR Lounge

    [...] “over-edited” if you try too hard to recover the highlights and shadows all at once.  (Click HERE for a great example of how to avoid [...]

  3. How To Preserve A Saturated Sunset In Your HDR Images - Weekly Edit Season 2 Episode 5

    […] “over-edited” if you try too hard to recover the highlights and shadows all at once.  (Click HERE for a great example of how to avoid […]

Leave a reply

Advertisement