Edit on a smart­phone

Jo Bradford en­joys the ben­e­fits of im­age-edit­ing on the move, and shares her favourite tech­niques for the Snapseed app

Digital Camera World - - PHOTO ACTIVE -

One of the great plea­sures of pur­su­ing smart­phone pho­tog­ra­phy is that I can shoot and edit on my phone wher­ever I am, and when­ever the mood takes me. If I have a spare minute be­tween meet­ings or while I am on a train, I use the time on my phone edit­ing pho­tos. I never have a wasted minute any­more: be­ing made to wait or queue for some­thing is just an op­por­tu­nity to get my phone out and work on my pho­tos. It’s life-chang­ing! I used to shoot with a big DSLR cam­era and spend weeks pro­cess­ing on my com­puter, in pro­grams laden with clever tools that took years to learn.

Let’s look at how to give your pic­ture some fi­nesse dur­ing the edit­ing process. There are many great apps out there to help im­prove your pho­tos, I favour the free Snapseed app (iOS and An­droid) on my smart­phone for quick ed­its, and Affin­ity Photo on my iPad Pro for more de­tailed work. Both Snapseed and Affin­ity Photo have a fa­cil­ity to de­velop raw files, where you can ad­just Ex­po­sure and White Bal­ance, amongst oth­ers. ‘Do less in or­der to do more’ is the motto I ap­ply in the photo-edit­ing phase. Edit wisely and spar­ingly to re­veal the beauty in an im­age and to en­hance a great shot. Don’t let your pho­tos be de­fined by the apps and fil­ters you choose: use them with a light touch and let the pic­ture’s in­ner beauty sing out.

Most smart­phones au­to­mat­i­cally boost the sat­u­ra­tion when you take a photo. This can look punchy, but it also looks fake! Turn the sat­u­ra­tion down slightly now, so that you are not over­lay­ing even more fak­ery onto it to be­gin with. Make it look re­al­is­tic for now, and trust that you can boost your sat­u­ra­tion again later in just the right amount. It will be like a fi­nal layer of var­nish to en­hance your mas­ter­piece at the end.

1 Ro­tate and Crop tools

Be­gin with the Ro­tate and Crop tools to get lined things up. If your hori­zon is wonky, this is the tool to sort it out. Use the Crop tool next. Move the edges of the im­age to crop to one of the as­pect ra­tio pre­sets, or make a free crop.

2 Brush tool

For pre­ci­sion ad­just­ments, use the Brush tool. Tools in­clude Ex­po­sure and Sat­u­ra­tion; my favourites are the Dodge and Burn tools. Dodge bright­ens by adding light, so move to­wards the + sign for this ef­fect. Burn dark­ens by de­creas­ing light, so move to­wards the - sign for this.

3 Se­lec­tive tool

For larger-area ad­just­ments, use the Se­lec­tive tool. I pri­mar­ily work with Bright­ness here. Us­ing a pinch ges­ture on the touch­screen, you will see a red blush ap­pear across the area to be af­fected by the ad­just­ment. Swipe left or right to in­crease or de­crease the tool ef­fect.

4 Tune Im­age

The Tune Im­age menu of­fers a range of use­ful tools such as Am­bi­ence. (The re­sult is like an HDR ef­fect.) There are also use­ful High­lights and Shad­ows tools, plus De­tail, which adds a tiny amount of ex­tra con­trast to the edge de­tails in or­der to make the shot ap­pear sharper.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.