Why is Editing as Important as the Photo Shoot?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by benjikan, Jul 23, 2009.

  1. benjikan

    benjikan TPF Noob!

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    Why is Editing as Important as the Photo Shoot?

    I decided writing this essay after going through close to twelve hundred (1200) images this afternoon. Why? Because I want to share with you the importance of editing and how it defines what your style is and what your state of mind was at the time of your decision to make the choices you made. I have observed that depending on the time of day, the mood I am in and how I am feeling about myself will have a dramatic effect on the choices I will make. When having to make that very important decision it is important to be aware of the state of mind you are in. If you are willing to make the commitment at the time you are editing, that will be what those who view your image as you the artist photographer will see. They will interpret you and your work based on that juncture in time. That is why I usually go through several stages during the editing process.

    1. The adaptation period which is based on the first 10-20 images per series. This is where I observe the images and get a general feel of what I might expect from the expression of the model, general sense of composition and overall feel.

    2. The settling in period. Where I am finding indicators of where I think a sequence is going and I am starting to define preferences.

    3. The marking of choices marked and noted generally from 3 to 5 stars. I am usually overly generous at the onset, until I see a knock me out shot, where I then go back and mark the now not so great image accordingly.

    4. The moving of the selects in to a separate file.

    5. A resting period. I do not look at the images for a few hours before making the final choices.

    6. The final selects from a reduced selection from the original selections.

    7. The commencement of the post production

    The editing process really expresses more about you than what was expressed during the actual photo production.

    Photo shoots are frenetic at best and there are a multiplicity of concerns that do not allow me to delve as deeply in to the scenario as does the editing process. It is akin to shooting a film and viewing the rushes. My general rule of thumb is, if I have not gotten that "WOW" moment during the shooting of a sequence, I keep shooting till I do. If I don't, I know that the only thing that will save that sequence is a good rational or some damn innovative editing and post production work.

    The photo shoot and production is not over until the editing and post production is completed. If you have poorly edited your images the outcome could be catastrophic. I cannot tell you how often a good editing job made the difference between an OK acceptably professional job and something very unique and special. If you saw some of the out takes of mine you would understand why choices in editing are so important. I could use all of the RAW material from the same photo shoot and produce what would look like two totally different photographers. Moods expressed as cold and detached to intense and passionate from exactly the same source.

    That is why I said that the editing of the photo shoot or film is an extension of who you are and were during that process. Your mind set and emotional state at the time can be seen by those with discerning eyes.

    I will end this by a little story. A wonderful Art Director named Martin Schmolgruber from Madame Figaro Magazine once said to me after I presented my photos to him the following, "I see you quit smoking Benjamin..." I said yeah I did, how did you know?" He responded, "I could tell by your images!"

    Benjamin Kanarek Blog ยป Why is Editing as Important as the Photo Shoot?
     
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  2. MelodyMusic

    MelodyMusic TPF Noob!

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    In short, coming from someone who is totally new to the world of photography:
    Editing is the 'final touch' to your photo? If there are any parts you didn't quite capture alone by your camera, or would like to emphasize them/reduce them, which you didn't have the chance to while setting your photo ranges...I guess editing software would team up as your sidekicks in certain situations.

    I once heard from someone that even when a photo is intended to be edited later on, it still must be a good photo; since there is only so much you could do to a bad photo to start off with.
     
  3. DRoberts

    DRoberts TPF Noob!

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    Other than snap shots...all photos are entended for editing. And it is true that you need a good photo to start with. Editing can make good photos great, but can only make bad photos passable.
    Editing is just another tool you have to control the uncontrolable tangibles. In todays photography editing is just about as important as the shoot itself. Now this will cause a bunch of people to get offensive and judgmental about the topic, but no one puts out shots straight from the camera to their clients.
     
  4. Baaaark

    Baaaark TPF Noob!

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    Wow. You are very passionate about your artwork! I bet you are nothing short of an amazing professional!

    As far as me, from a hobbyist standpoint, I do think there is a very obvious place for post-processing. But post-processing SUCKS! Its so boring and not fun. And I can't help but think I could be out there actually taking photos instead of working on ones I've already taken (which is why I always PP after dark). And I guess, since no one is relying on me to do well with my photos, I could not PP them at all. But, I can (at this point) improve an image with about five minutes worth of work adjusting colors and cropping to a better fit. And it feels good to improve something that you're only partially satisfied with in its raw form.

    As far as that one photo that really clicks, I haven't come close to having one yet. I'm sure when I do, I'll be more than happy to try and perfect it with hours of PP. But as it is now, I'm learning basic composition, and IMO the raw photograph has to be good in order to warrant any post-processing.
     
  5. ak_

    ak_ TPF Noob!

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    An excellent post benjikan. Editing is the selection process. The term is often confused these days with developing/retouching digital images.
     
  6. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Doubt that the OP is going to notice or care since this thread is 6 years old, he has not been seen around here for a long time and his profile no longer exists.
     
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