Editing wedding images is an important part of the image process. Just like anyone anyone can take a photograph, anyone can edit an image. However just as considerable skill and creativity is required in taking a great photo, the same is true in the editing process.
There are two photo editing packages most pros will use, these are Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop, the latter has become so famous the word is now a verb. I often get asked by guests at weddings if I can photoshop them :-)
So lets take a simple look at the uses for both.
Please note; I am writing this for the easy understanding of Bride and Grooms and is not intended as a tutorial or overview of the capabilities of each package.
All the images will be checked over and any neccesary alterations are made. The alterations that take place here are as follows;
Cropping, contrast, global colour cast removal, inhancement of details such as wedding dress details and details in dark suits, vibrance and saturation tweaks. In addition to this, Black and white conversion and colour toning of selected images takes place and subtle or vignettes may also be added.
Find Below 4 versions of an image that will provide you with idea of my style.
Standard, Modern Vintage, Black and White, Mocha Toning.
Its fair to say we have all seen amazing images that are possible to create using photoshop, if your unsure just type "photography digital art" into google. These images take hours and sometimes weeks to create, and are although wonderful are not what my clients want for the wedding album.
I mostly use photoshop in the following ways: creative colouring and toning, removal of distractions such as no smoking signs or fire exit signs, skin enhancement such as softening or spot removal. Removal of tattoos and birth marks are done only by client request. I use photoshop in subtle ways that are not meant to be noticed.
I dont generally use photoshop to add dodgy moonscapes and the likes to wedding images, I prefer my images to be a more true, but enhanced, reflection of the day, environment, and people.
Find below typical examples of my use of photoshop for wedding images.
Although I take every effort to see all the details before taking a bridal portrait sometimes in the rush of the day it is possible to miss things.
The first image below is the image after the initial lightroom edits, there were about 8 very similar photos for the Bride and Groom to select from, each with just small changes to expressions and head placement. I edited just one of the images in photoshop to make a lot of small changes, when all the small changes are put together it makes quite a difference to to final image. There is about 20 minutes work in the image, so applying the work to all of the 8 images taken is not really an option.
Sometimes there is a better image hiding inside an image and applying a tighter crop can really enhance the look of the photo. The photo below was taken before the ceromony and the bride was feeling a little nervous. I have cropped closer in to draw attention to her wonderful expression and converting to black and white make for a truly beautiful portrait.