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Photo Editing Courses?

Discussion in 'Digital Image Editing & Printing' started by Aspadora, Aug 22, 2019.

  1. Aspadora

    Aspadora Well-Known Member

    Hi all,

    I've had a scan of the recent threads in this section but I can't see anything similar, but apologies if this has been discussed elsewhere.

    I was wondering if anyone had some online photo editing courses that they recommend? I've trawled through google and there are obviously quite a lot out there, I'm just interested to know if there is something I should specifically look to. This is made more difficult by the fact I use Affinity Photo and not Photoshop.

    I'm not looking for anything that has a specific focus on software features, but I am interested in what to look at in pictures in order to know how to best edit them. At the moment, my 'process' is limited to some tricks I've picked up from YouTube .

    I don't necessarily mind paying for something, but clearly the cheaper the better!
     
  2. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Learning likes this.
  3. Aspadora

    Aspadora Well-Known Member

    Yeah but from the ones I've seen, they're more of HOW you apply certain features rather than WHY. Basically, I never know what to do to a picture to make it a good picture, if that makes sense?
     
  4. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I don't think you can get much from a course. It is more about assessing the image. When the on-line magazine On Landscape first started it had hour-long videos of Joe Cornish and Tim Parkin editing landscapes. It was quite interesting that they hardly did anything to them in terms of changes and referred always to their memory of the scene - darken that tree, increase saturation on that heather. As far as I know subscribers can still access all the back issues - they are up to issue 189 (they still email me to tempt me back).

    You can learn a lot by following the discussions in Appraisal - although it is not as active now as it was. If you want analysis of one of your pictures you can post it there and see what comments you get - they cover composition, technical stuff and editing suggestions.

    When I look at a picture I have taken (not that they are particularly worthwhile) I first check basic technical stuff - is it in focus, is it square (not tilted), is it at all interesting. I'll then decide to delete it or keep it. If I keep it I usually apply some default processing such as camera lens corrections, sharpening, choose a colour profile. Then I'll assess if it needs cropping as I use 4x5, 1x1 and 9x16 as well as 3x2 aspect ratios depending on the image. While cropping I'll straighten it if it needs it. Then I'll correct exposure if necessary and probably tweak the contrast -either directly or modifying highlights/shadows, add a little clarity and that's about it. If I am printing it I'll do a proof version and adjust if necessary. Some images need more - usually if I screwed up the exposure in the first place.
     
  5. Aspadora

    Aspadora Well-Known Member

    Thanks Pete. I do post a few things in the appraisal section, and have had some great critiques in the past which have been helpful. I might start watching more of the "watch me edit a scene" videos on YouTube. I watched Peter McKinnon's videos a fair bit but I got tired of seeing him replacing skies and adding things that weren't meant to be there! I tried it once last week and it's just not my style. I'll have to find someone who is!
     
  6. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Editing in order to manipulate the picture content is not something I do, apart from the occasional attempt (usually futile) to clone out things other than dust spots or correct keystoning. Replacing skies specifically, or making composites in general, isn't "photography" in my view ... more a type of art and as such entirely dependent on the imagination of the perpetrator.
     
  7. Aspadora

    Aspadora Well-Known Member

    I'm in total agreement!
     
  8. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    If you ever find out please let the rest of us in on it...:D

    There's more to what makes a photograph a good photograph than lots of fiddling and diddling in Photoshop or similar. To start with you need things like a good composition, an interesting subject, a possible story line, interesting lighting, interesting shape or textures etc. etc. Truth is you can't make a pictorial silk purse out of a sows ear - believe me I've tried...:rolleyes:

    Some things are fairly basic like exposure correction to recover slightly over- or under-exposed area (within reason), maybe a bit of cloning or healing brush to remove unwanted spots, blemishes or objects. Look at possible crops to focus attention more strongly on the principle subjects matter. There is a philosophy in photography known as KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid - which encapsulates the concept that a picture should contain nothing but the details most relevant to the subject or intent of the image, this is also sometimes known as "less is more". Look up the work of Michael Kenna for some fine examples of this principle.

    If you trawl the second hand bookshops there is quite a lot of work on photography and photo technique out there - a lot will relate to film but most will give you a very good idea of what the particular author thinks makes a picture work - which is something else to remember; what works for you may not work for someone else, it's very much a matter of personal choice.

    Finally don't be afraid to experiment. Try things, see what you think makes a picture better, ask us in Appraisal and see if there's a general agreement about a positive or negative reaction as a guide to what is or isn't working. Remember in the end it's your photograph and if you like it than that's what really matters...
     
  9. Aspadora

    Aspadora Well-Known Member

    Thanks Sid, I'll have a look in some of the charity shops near me for some good books! I always like an excuse to buy more :) I think, as an engineer, I like having a "right answer". I'm not used to things being based on opinions haha, so it'll take some time and practice I think...
     
    Learning likes this.
  10. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    But never be afraid to do your own thing. Famous engineers are generally more creative than artists.
     

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