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How to Post-Process Photos: Tips and tricks

Taking a beautiful photo is the first step toward creating a stunning image. To make a picture really shine, it’s important to put some effort into post-processing it. You can improve your photo’s colors, contrast, and details with the right techniques to create a stunning final product.

In this guide, we’ll look at some tips and tricks on how to process a photo beautifully, whether you’re a novice or an experienced photographer. From adjusting exposure to adding creative filters, we’ll cover everything you need to know to turn your ordinary photos into masterpieces. So grab your favorite photo editing software and get started!

Processing “without processing”

Naturalness is what modern bloggers focus on. Frames look as if they were uploaded originals. However, this is not entirely true. Basic editing is needed in any case. Especially blue-painted photos need some adjustments. What can you tweak?

  • add some contrast;
  • slightly decrease the exposure;
  • adjust the intensity of the light and dark areas;
  • take away the yellow hues with a cooler temperature;
  • use background and photo editing tools and remove unnecessary details;
  • increase the sharpness (detail) if the picture is not good enough.

Just don’t overdo it. Your aim is to enhance what you have. And the picture itself should look as much like the original as possible.

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Super close-up

Unlike close-ups, where the whole head and part of the shoulders are usually left in the frame, super close-up framing takes just a fragment, which is a part of the whole.

Typically, this technique is used in portrait photography to emphasize a particular part of the face. For example, the expressiveness of the eyes, the sharpness of the cheekbones, etc.

To make such a shot, you will have to crop the image. What should you pay attention to while making a composition? The main subject should occupy 1/3 of the frame. The background should be neutral ─ monochrome or half-blurred. Use the best AI background remover, such as Luminar Neo, if necessary.

And the model’s skin should be clean and neat. If you are interested in AI background remover, we suggest using Luminar Neo. This software has many fantastic AI tools to make a real work of art out of your image.

Cropping

Full-length photos are at the peak of popularity. However, if, for some reason, the image has to be cropped, it is not recommended to cut the picture at the level of the joints (fingers, wrists, elbows, knees, ankles) ─ the model will look clumsy and strange.

Also, do not remove the arms and legs: visually, the person will seem larger than he/she is. Better if the bottom line of the frame goes at the waist or in the middle of the thigh. The rule applies in all cases, including when the model poses from the back.

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Dynamics and motion

There are different ways to deal with blurry photos. Someone immediately deletes such pictures as a defect, and someone sees them as an artistic value. However, as trends show, they are becoming more and more popular. Blurry pictures are about ephemerality, evanescence, and atmosphere. People want to look at them again and again.

Photo editors also allow you to give a picture fuzzy outlines. For example, in Photoshop, you can apply Blur in motion. And for the effect of a film photo, add some graininess.

Underexposure

Darkened photos are a fairly long-term trend that gives any content the prefix of fashion. Underexposure means removing brightness and adding shadows. What does this effect do with the right settings? The image becomes more three-dimensional and captures color better.

To darken an illustration, move the exposure slider down until you get the desired effect. Dark filters are especially good on greens, beiges, grays, and whites.

Film photography

The nostalgia for the good old days never seems to go away. What’s the point of capturing on film and then digitizing it? You can achieve the effect of a film photograph with almost any editor.

  • work with greens, yellows, purples, or other shades to achieve the effect of a vintage photo;
  • darken/lighten the image with the tone curve;
  • add subtle graininess.
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Many applications imitate shooting with an analog camera by applying a filter, overlaying the shooting date, etc.

How to follow trends in photo content

Want to stay on top of the latest trends in photo content processing?

  • Buy glossy magazines. Cult magazines publish only high-quality works on their pages ─ usually by top photographers and top-notch retouchers. The more good content you study, the better you make your own: observation is a great power.
  • Read photography blogs. Photo schools, studios, photographers, etc., have their own blogs. Choose the one you like best with the content and style.
  • Subscribe to the personal pages. Like a particular photographer or retoucher’s style? Follow him or her to see useful posts on a regular basis.

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