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Photography Tips, Tricks, and Professional picture sessions

Premier, award-winning contemporary glamour and fine art photography, specializing in timeless portraits of women and their families. Serving the greater Boston and Providence areas.

you've taken the photo. now what?! {photography tips}

OK, so I still have people say: "I know the exposure triangle, I know the basic controls. I'm getting great blur where I want it, and focus when I don't. But I take the photo and it still doesn't look like yours."

That's because there's also a really important step: post-processing. Whether you like it or not, EVERY SINGLE photographer uses some type of post-processing tool. What do I use? I like to switch between Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. 

People hear the word "photoshop" and they freak out. No, I'm not photoshopping someone to look like they have a 20 inch waist or washing away all wrinkles on the face.

I do as little as possible in post-processing. The key is to, obviously, get the lighting, the white balance, the focus, etc. right in the camera during the shoot. Yes, you can edit a lot of this during post-processing, but the less you have to do, the better. 

The idea is that once you get into post-processing, you only have to touch the faces up SLIGHTLY to enhance their already beautiful features, without making them look fake or overdone.

Take this model for example. I really didn't need to touch her up at all, she's gorgeous. She has the most beautiful natural freckles and red hair. But there were a few things I wanted to do to just slightly take it to the next level.

You'll notice the "in camera" shot is a bit dark. The first thing I did after importing it into Lightroom was just slightly increase the exposure. Seriously.....ever so slightly. It really didn't need that much.

Once I did that, since the color was already great and her eyes sparkled, I then opened it in Photoshop.

The next step was to use the cloning tool in Photoshop to just get rid of a few of the stray hairs that were framing her face. We don't want those. Those are just flyaways that we want to take away from distracting the overall look. 

The next thing I did was to continue to use the cloning tool to soften the shadows. There's a rule that I heard from Sue Bryce (LOVE HER!) that you should only remove imperfections from the face that would be gone on their own in two weeks. Such as a pimple or a small cut. Or if it's a toddler: a booger. (Trust me, I've done it).

I ever so slightly softened the shadows around the nose, chin, and forehead. Notice that I did NOT touch any of the freckles.

The final step was just to amplify her highlights. I used the dodge tool in Photoshop to ever so slightly up the nice long and lean highlights on the bridge of her nose and small chin. 

Again, the key takeaway here is that post-processing is not the ultimate FIX for photography. It just enhances photography to take it to the next level! 

My next project? Finding a guinea pig to be my adult model....I would love some volunteers to do a "mother" shoot....I want to show off that mothers are beautiful...I have a few already lined up!! Comment below if you're interested!