Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Photo Editing Is The Icing On The Cake...Or Cookie!

Recently I had lunch at Panera with a good friend ;)  Before leaving, I purchased a very Valentinesy cookie (heart-shaped, bright pink, sprinkles, etc.-you know!).  As I looked at it more I couldn't help thinking that the cookie was almost a symbol of a shade of femininity and (for lack of a better word) girly.  

When I got home, my partner was looking particularly "manly": dark blue tee, jeans, unshaven, etc.  I asked him to stand holding the Valentinesy cookie over his heart and I took a few pictures of him like that.  My idea for the shoot was that strong "masculine" symbols can and do hold fragile, femininity with great care and in high esteem.    

When I was finished getting my shots I got to do one of my most favorite things in my photography process: viewing and editing.

(This is the photo before any editing)

(This is the photo after using a editing option called "Stamp" on Photoshop Elements 8).  I like that the Stamp feature picked up on fine lines and details while blocking others out.  It made my subject look even more rough and "manly".  Now the hand holding the focal heart is more pronounced and possibly even looks more protective of it.  

After cropping, the photo can take on a completely different story.  This picture could be used to represent loved ones who are far away; holding our hearts; trying keep us near.

I use photo editing to tell a story.  A story can twist, wind, deepen, and go further still past an original photograph.  What's the story you want to tell?


If you're looking for lower cost photo editing software try Photoshop Elements.  It's not the full Photoshop, but has it's key features and it costs less.  It's what I use and I'm very happy to have it. 

Picasa and Picnick are two free photo editing programs that I've seen others do amazing things with.  I used Picasa before I purchased PSE.