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Get more from your pictures – Time to edit

Taking pictures is fun. Sharing them with friends, family and social media is a way of life for many. How many of those images are “good”. Go ahead; take a serious like at the pictures you take. The picture you saw in your head is probably NOT the same picture your camera captured.

Mostly it’s the camera’s fault. The sensors get confused in very bright and very dark situations. Some of this can be compensated for with adjustments to the settings on the camera. Any camera; cell phone to DSLR.

However, all is not lost; it’s time to edit your pictures. Basic edits are very easy. Things like crop, contrast and many more tools are available for download, as an app, and even online. These tools are a quick and easy ways to bring out your vision in the image, that your camera didn’t get quite right.

[Note: Always blame the camera, never the photographer]

Here are some basic edits that many of your images may benefit by:

Crop your images. You want the main subject to be the main subject. The cropping tool allows you to adjust the framing of your photo to alter its composition. Want to get rid of that pesky photo-bomber or that unsightly building in the corner of your shot? Cropping will eliminate those nuisances in the far regions of the original photo. You can crop to any height and width you desire, giving you the ability to change a photo from a horizontal aspect to a vertical, and vice versa.

Adjust the White Balance. This function is a kind of color correction that specifically targets whites. You know a photo is not properly white balanced when it appears too “blue” or too “yellow.” Simply adjusting the white balance (many editing programs have an automatic adjustment function that takes care of it with one click!) will do wonders. Try it, and you'll see what a huge difference it makes to the tone of your photo.

Sharpening This function can bring out subtle detail in your photos, and can make out-of-focus elements seem more focused. While sharpening can do wonders for some photos, for others, the sharpening effect can introduce unwanted distortion or graininess. Some blurry photos just aren't salvageable with digital image sharpening, but for those that are, use this tool sparingly. Just the minimum sharpening is recommended for maximum effect.

Color Correction (or Balance)

A histogram is a fancy word for the spectrum of colors that compose your photo, and it is unique to each photo. Your editing software will read the histogram, and the level adjustment function allows you to stretch or compress the histogram to brighten, darken or saturate the colors.

The two images here are actually the same image. One is right out of the camera and the other is exactly the same image only with some basic edits. Which one do you like better?

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