It's Not Always Just The Camera

March 12, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

"Wow, your camera sure takes great pictures!"

We hear this all the time.   Although this is true — our Canon gear does not fail to astound — it doesn't quite tell the whole story.

Every shoot yields hundreds of images, and it's our job to comb through each and every photo to find the ones that best tell the story of the day.  A sweet bride giving an over-the-shoulder smile.  A groomsman sliding across the dance floor on his knees.  But the cold truth is that often times, aside from the emotion or action captured, these photos look, well... unremarkable.  Part of the skill set that we possess is the ability to look past this and "see" the potential true beauty that's waiting to be released from the image.   Not unlike a sculptor walking around their untouched marble block, we mentally walk around these images, imagining what ways we can make it more special.  Sometimes it's as simple as a tweak of color, contrast, or brightness.  Other times it means multiple trips into various pieces of advanced imaging software for just the right effect, or even some true digital surgery to remove distracting elements.  

Look at the photo below.

It's a lovely shot of the first dance.  His expression is gentle, pleasant, and completely focused on her.  The rim of light on them both looks great, and they're nicely bookended between two wall sconces.  Wwwaitaminnit... is that an exit sign above their heads?  Yep.  And not even off to the side — it's center stage!  That'll have to go.  The rest of the photo looks alright, but what can we do to enhance the focus of him on her?  Maybe dim the lights in the rest of the room some so the viewer is just as focused as he is... and a touch of contrast.  Let's see...


Perfect!  The sign is gone, the lights are dimmed, the contrast is bumped.  Now the focus is completely on the couple, not the exit sign or the random onlookers behind them.  Feels like we found what the image was hiding, doesn't it?

For better comparison:

Now we repeat this process on the next photo.  Then the next.  All the way through to the end.  This perhaps explains why we take a few weeks to return your fully edited photos, and why our job is SO much more than just showing up and snapping these pictures for a few hours.

So, yes, the camera DOES take great pictures.  But hundreds of hours of education on techniques, gear and software certainly doesn't hurt either!


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