There’s nothing worse than planning a huge photo taking session only to wake up that morning to a dull cloudy day, or to take a load of photos and realise that they just didn’t turn out as bright as you thought they had on your viewfinder. I used to resort to deleting the photos and starting from scratch but this doesn’t always have to be the case, this is how i salvage the photos that lack a little bit of light. (hint: its really simple too!)
To do all the editing in this case i use the colour story app, i do use other photo editing apps as well but when I’m trying to add light to photos colour story is my go to.
The three steps i take are seriously simple and the full edit takes less than a minute, it’s just a matter of adjusting the curves of the photo and using my go to filter.
1) The first step is to adjust the curves, when you first enter the “curves” section (under tools > adjustments > curves) you’ll see the line is completely straight; to get used to how the tool works i’d recommend playing around with the line and seeing how the look of the photo changes when you move the middle dot. Once you’re familiar with how the photo changes depending on how you move the curve you can decide what level is right for you.
2) I like to just pull the centre dot in an upward motion towards the left corner of the photo, as you can see from the second photo the line is now slightly curved. I don’t like to adjust the curves too much because i still want it to look natural, but like i said once you’re used to it you can decide which level of lifting is right for you.
3) Photo editing wouldn’t be photo editing without a filter so the last thing i do is apply the “pop” filter (under filters > essentials > pop) in the colour story app. Although you’ve already brightened the photo using the curves tool, the pop filter helps to add vibrancy to the colours and add even more light to the photo without sacrificing the contrasting colours.
This is the photo from the original file to the final edit:
and another example because why not..
I often find using a standard brightening tool to brighten photos washes out the photo and makes details appear less sharp, but this method means all the colours are retained but they still don’t appear over edited.
Okay so i know it’s only a short one but it’s just a little method i wanted to share, there’s nothing worse than taking a perfectly positioned photo only to have the light let you down, so hopefully this might help if you ever find yourself in that situation! – Maria x
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