Examples of Editing Wedding Photos by Andrew Davies Photography hover your mouse on and off the images
The ability of a photographer is not only important during the wedding but also after. Here at Andrew Davies Photography we pride ourselves on being on the leading edge of design and one of the top in the country at editing images and producing albums.
This is one area in which not only will you see certain photographers stand out but it will also better explain pricing structures as a look at the images below will leave you with a better understanding of the real time involved in editing over 1000 photos from a wedding. These results require both time and skill not found in Amatuer or Part Time photographers who simply cannot spend this amount of time working on photos whilst holding down day jobs. When you are looking at prices for photographers judge it against the quality of their work and look at the editing they do afterwards , would you really only want half a job doing on your wedding photos ?
In the above example although the first image is nice ( hover your mouse on and off to see ) , there is far too much distraction in the mirror , we therefore removed and rebuilt the photograph to lose all the distractions and rebuilt the dresser and even made new reflections to match.
Time taken 30 Minutes
In this example the first image was a shot taken of the car and bride and groom which is quite an important moment , the guests are enjoying themselves in the background and removing them is time consuming and can in some cases be annoying for the guests , we therefore removed the guests from the shot for use in the couples wedding album across a double page spread. This also involves rebuilding things such as hedges and windows to make the shot right.
Time Taken 40 Minutes.
Selective Colouring or Colour Splash is a technique in which a colour or colours in a shot are pulled out and the remainder left in black and white. It is very popular but sometimes over used, when used correctly and artistically it can make a dramatic shot. In this we coloured and added more confetti to give the shot the WOW factor for the clients album.
Time taken 40 Minutes
Black and White, Sepia and colour toned shots are something we else we are very good at , knowing what colour to apply for the look you want is critical and whilst some photographers will happily desaturate all your photos and supply bland black and white versions we take the time on each and every photo we convert to get it right and looking good.
Time taken 5 Minutes
Occassionally we also employ HDR techniques in our photography and this can be done in various ways, in non technical terms it results in a shot with much more detail and clarity than normal.
Time taken 10 Minutes
Artistic license is the ability of a photographer to see something different and special in a photo and to be able to realise that in reality. This is a talent few have and its completely unique as no two people will see a shot the same way. The shot above for instance was a pose the bride liked but the car really didnt lend anything so by simply reproducing the colour scheme sympathetically and spending some time we managed to create a stunning album image.
Time taken 40 Minutes
White balance adjustment especialy indoors is a standard adjustment but one which needs to be handled correctly to bring out the colours as they were on the day. Light bulbs of various types give off different colours that the camera picks up and we then correct this using our software. Sometimes in a venue it can be pretty tricky to second guess the lighting as its often mixed with daylight in windows in one direction and artificial light in another.
Time taken 2 Minutes
Vintage and Fine Art processing is again a technique we use when it fits the style of the day and couple , the techniques used to do this vary in time and complexity.
Time taken 10-50 Minutes
Looking for a Cheap Photographer ? Read on ...
|Why do some wedding
photographers charge £400 and some £2000, well there
are many explanations but heres my perspecitve from years
First of all lets dispell a complete myth ' Anyone can take a good photo with cameras these days ' , maybe a snap of uncle john standing on the beach yes , a 12 hour wedding with multiple locations , artificial lighting and real lighting , daylight darkness, shadows , rain or wind , people , macro-detail , and time constraints - ermmmm NO.
A modern day professional digital slr takes years to master and the theory of f-stops , depth of field , iso sensitivity , composition etc does not come in a camera handbook. It takes time and practise for a photographer to know what settings to apply and how best to wring every drop of performance from his camera, and even then technology advances so rapidly once you learn the one you have a new once comes along, and in the reality of a wedding situation the photographer has milli-seconds to make each setting decision or the shot has gone ...
So we have a few different types of wedding photographer, heres what to look for :
First theres the new guy/girl starting out - probably got a half decent camera and has been into photography in some way for a while as a hobby so has what we call 'The Eye' for a photo , they will know it because people will comment on how good their photos look. These people are usually low priced because they are trying to gain experience and although there is a small element of risk with a non-pro , if you can only afford a few hundred quid these are the guys to look for. Once theyre experienced you wont get them for that anymore. However if you find a photographer for a few hundred quid whos been in it for years , its because there work is of such a standard that they cant command a higher price - so be wary.
Then theres the business photographer - many start out off the back of a degree or without any experience at all purely as a commercial enterprise , buy a camera , start a company and off you go - get some experience and hopefully some good shots along the way - well lol , i wouldnt pay these guys at all to be at my wedding..wedding photography is an artform first and a business second - if you dont produce the results you wont get recommends and you wont survive. Be mindful too of organisations that employ photographers to do their weddings , freelancers are never as interested in getting it right as you are in youre own business , I dont employ freelance photographers. We are a family based business. A good test of the calibre of photographer you are choosing is to ask to see other photography work, for example landscapes and commmercial work, any good photographer will have a broad skill base and without this will not make a good wedding photographer, just an average one. Also be aware that some wedding photographers do it as a sideline and whilst that is fine if they are cheap, to pay a high price for someone for who photography is not their main job does not make any sense. The love and passion for photography is something that we take seriously and is what stands us out from the crowd. There are unfortunately companies around who like to try and knock what we do in order to build up their own client base but we can happily provide better quality photography even when we are doing two weddings a day because andrew and ruth are the main lead photographers and always in charge of whats going on, Andrew always takes control of the editing process too so as to provided consistent world class results. A business that survives taking a couple of weddings a month is not a going concern and should be avoided.
And last theres us hard working full time wedding photographers , our bread and butter is your big day and we will go out of our way to make it perfect wether that be taking photos , giving people lifts or organising things , its all part of the fun of the day to us. We also spend a huge amount of time after your day and I personally take about 4-6 weeks to process shots after a weddings spending some 20 hours or so editing on top of the 12 hours at the wedding. We reccie the venue , plan our timings and vanish into your day in a seamless way that makes you smile capturing moments you forget and moments you want to remember , and then wrap it all up in an exquisite album aswell as giving you your treasure memories on disks.
Technical stuff aside for one second, consider any other trade you would use and think about it the same way , if you employed a builder to do an extension on your house and paid a fair price , then the builder turned up jotted some notes down on a scrap of paper, took some measurements with a cheap tape measure and said he would have the job done in less time than anyone else would you then be concerned .. ??
If the builder turned up with digital measuring devices and books to show you examples of his work and sat and discussed your requirements and then laid out his plan and timescale, would you be more convinced the job was going to be right ??
For a bride and groom choosing the right photographer is bad enough but as with most people they would have no idea what an expensive slr looked like compare to a cheap one , these days a cheap one can be bulked up and made to look expensive with a battery grip and a cheap white lens so who would know ? yet another similar camera with a built in batter grip and expensive white lens could have cost in excess of £5,000 .....
So whats the difference you may ask , well lets say youre getting married in church and its fairly dark which a lot of churches are , the vicar demands no flash ( which is common ) , the camera used now needs to be capable of shooting in low light and have a good lens to match , commonly f1.2-f2.8 is the technical low light type of lenses , these cost good money and dont come with cheap photographers. If a non low light standard kit lens is used on a cheap camera which doesnt shoot in low light well the resulting shots when blown up especially are going to be blurred - no 2 ways about it. With a good camera and lens , they wont ..
We personally use Canon equipment as we prefer them but Nikon , Sony , Pentax and others all make good cameras , Our cameras are also Full Frame , which means the capture the most light possible on their sensors ( digital film ), there are not a lot of these on the market as they are pro cameras and pro prices ! Canon 1D series and 5D series , Nikon D3 and D700 series are currently the most used choices.
Again with lenses a good lens matters , it will produce a sharper clearer more colourful shot , some are designed to shoot over long distances and some in low light , commonly a good photographer will have a few fit for different needs . The pro lenses we use are all waterproof aswell which means we dont have to stop shooting in the rain , on a canon system all pro lenses have a red ring round the end ... Nikons pro range have a gold ring in general tho there are exceptions ..
The Editing Process
So youre looking for your perfect dress and youve found it , the venue is wonderful , youve got a beautiful car and the whole family spends weeks getting the right clothes and accessories for your day , would you then employ a second rate photographer to capture the lifetime memories of the day ? perhaps in the wrong colour , or the backs of peoples heads , maybe everyones in shadows all the time , or people are squinting in the sun - believe me it all happens ... or would you spend that little bit more and have the best photos you could possibly wish for to show your friends and familys .... should be an easy decision...
A question not enough couples ask and a subject a lot of photographers can be guarded about. Once you have taken the photos - How long to get them back , can i choose which ones to have in black and white , can you make my spot go away etc etc
Well the process is this ( for us anyway, not all photographers work the same way )
Once the day is over we return and load all the photos onto a secure hard drive and make a back up , so there are immediately two copies. These are also kept safe for you for an indefinite period of time incase you need them again.
After that the editing process begins , I personally edit EVERY photo one at a time , this is very time consuming but also very precise , on average it can take 4-6 weeks to finish a full set of photos. ( if youre photographer offers you a couple of day service then go elsewhere , theyre not taking the appropriate care to edit your shots and thats probably why they are cheap).
There are basic editing techniques which we apply to some or all shots these are :
Correcting light and shadow levels to create the best looking shot for print
heres a shot straight from camera on a bright day - even the best cameras struggle in bright sunshine
and after basic level and shadow correction ..
time taken approx 3 minutes per shot
Then there is colour correction , often needed in nightime scenarios and under strange lighting conditions ! churches for instance can come out yellow
time taken approx 2 minutes per shot
Next we crop and frame pictures where we think it will add to or make the shot better. Sometimes a tighter crop or a dark frame will make a shot.
and after colour correction and darkened frame
time taken 3 minutes
Selective Colouring or ' Colour Splash' is very modern and popular however also very time comsuming to be precise with ! one or more parts of the photo are coloured and the rest is left blacn and white.
time taken 15 minutes
and what about things that spoil the photo , things that shouldnt be in shot - well we take them out !
man behind car , road signs , lampost , cars all in the way
time taken 20 minutes
In the case of a shot which is important like a dress shot etc everything is done to make the shot perfect , below is a shot taken during the brides preparation , the shot was edited afterwards and the carpet table curtain and chair all cleared of rubbish and rebuilt
Time taken - 30 minutes
Or theres times when you have the location but its just not possible to have the background perfect , people in public places have a right to be there and cant be just 'chucked off set! ' as it where ... so again editing of these particular shots to gain perfection takes some time . this shot took 30 minutes .. inlcuding a rebuild of the pier , cloning of the sides and floor, removal of objects and people and general contrast and colouring tweaks ...
Black and White shots are timeless and need to be created carefully by selecting and altering colour channels , rather than just desaturating photos ( the fast way ) which leaves a grey and muggy lifeless shot ...
black and white channel mixer shot
and theres also Artistic License , the photographer ability to take a shot and change it into something special... take a close look at these before and after shots
time taken - 30 minutes
So hopefully its becoming a little more apparent what a wedding photographer does for the price and what he cant be doing if he doesnt charge it ! , and looking at those times just imagine them multiplied by 500 , which is the sort of number of final edited shots a wedding can produce , then add to that a few hours for making the disks labels and envelopes , and another couple of days if a storybook album is being done to design the album and you get a fairer idea of what we do ( i hope :) )
We all have to make a living too and if you consider a wedding to be 4 weeks worth of work then it becomes a little more reasonable the price we charge for the service we offer .. take into account the price of cameras equipment insurance travel meals etc etc its not a massive profit making business but it is a lifestyle business and those who love it enough will get enough back out both in financial benefits and the rewarding enjoyment of having provided you with a lasting memory which will last for many generations.
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