Image credit: youtube/CahandarEminov
- Chapter 1 – What Tools and Equipment do you need?
- Chapter 2 – Mounting a Basic Outdoor Shoot
- Chapter 3 – The Importance of Light Box
- Chapter 4 – Taking Photos Using your Light Box
- Chapter 5 – POST PHOTO EDITING: The Basics [You are here]
- Chapter 6 – Frequently Encountered Problems
- Chapter 7 – Key Points
A good photographer always has good photo editing skills. If you aspire to be a great photographer, you must always take time to develop your talent in photo editing. Keep in mind that even the simplest adjustment in your raw photos can make a huge difference in your outputs. If you have been receiving good feedback that you can really take good photos, then the talent is not enough to make you a good photographer.
The importance of photo editing in watch photography cannot be denied. In this chapter, you will learn the basics in image editing. You will learn techniques and tips that will help you produce believable photos. You will know how to handle basic tasks to cater your editing needs. Keep in mind that your imagination is the only limit when it comes to editing. Once you are good in editing, you have full capability to transform your photos as you want them to be.
In this chapter, we will help you develop your talent in editing. This is a must because, to reiterate, a photographer is not a good photographer if post photo editing skill is lacking.
Adjusting the Color
Let us start with adjusting the color of the photo. When your background is white, it is inevitable that there will be unwanted specs magnified. There are hues that you would want to remove to polish the photo. Using the GIMP photo editing software, you can adjust the brightness of the photo in the “curve” settings. You will find the menu tab at the top of the photograph then select “Colors” then click “Curves”. The “Curve” dialog box will then appear.
If you have used other photo editing software before, you are already familiar with how the “curve” dialog works. There is a diagonal line with two dots on each of its ends. You can adjust the color of the photo through moving the dot around the curve box. In this case where you want to make the photo brighter, move the dot from the upper right hand corner to the left direction. You can choose the level of brightness desired. This is very common when you want to make the background whiter and cleaner. Since in watch photography, you often use a white background you would want to make it appear clean and bright for the watch to pop. If you try to move the dot on the lower edge and drag it upward, you will notice that the dark parts of the photo is highlighted. This will emphasize the appearance of the watch. Play with both ends of the color curve until you are satisfied with the outcome. Now let’s check the difference between the raw photo and the edited photo by simply selecting the “Undo History” under the “Dialogs” in the menu option. You will also see here the changes that you made with the photo. You can simply undo your edits with this function. You can select what adjustment you made you want to be undone. Think of it as your safety net in case you have done so much to the photo and you realize that not every touch up is necessary. This means that you can experiment with the available functions of GIMP to transform your raw photo in accordance with your preference.
Cropping the Photo
Now that you are done with cleaning and polishing the background, the next step is to crop the photo. Cropping means selecting a portion or subset of the photo to create a whole new image depending on your selection. Sometimes raw photos possess wide spacing on the sides of the subject. Unessential spacing is unattractive especially on blog photos. You would want the audience to have a full view of the details of the watch. It is desirable when you see every single detail especially in watch photography. Consider also the mega pixels of the camera you are using because cameras with high mega pixels will require you more work in image date. But if your camera has less than 3 mega pixels, no need to worry.
Using GIMP, select the “rectangle select tool” in the very first icon in the left hand of the dialog box. In this case, we will use the “Rectangle Select Tool” because our objective is a dimension with 800×600 pixels that is in similar shape with a rectangle.
First step for you is to draw a rectangle capturing the area you want to be included in the new image you want to create. After positioning the cursor as to your desired image, click “edit” then “Paste as” in the “New Image”. The new image will then appear on your screen.
The simple techniques thought above some of the most important lessons that you will need in post-photo editing. These might seem very basic but they are the stepping stones to master photo editing. Take time to experiment your photo editing software trying out its different features and functions. Bear in mind, practice makes perfect. Through time, your skills in editing will develop even if you haven’t really undergone proper training. This means that photography is a skill that can be developed through experience and applicable theories. You just have to be very persistent in practicing.