Image Editing an Essential Skill for the Photographer

Looking out over vibrant forests and terraced paddy fields from a hotel overlook in Bali, Indonesia.

Editing is an essential skill for a photographer. It involves decision making. Therefore, its important to train ourselves to be able to make the right decisions during the editing process. And, like so many other things, we learn through repetition.

Actually editing occurs at every stage of the photographic process. Here are some examples:

  • your decision as to the main focal point or subject of your image
  • your decision as to what to include within or exclude from the frame
  • composition
  • lighting and exposure
  • initial image processing of RAW files
  • image rating (e.g., between a 1 and 5 star rating in Adobe Lightroom)
  • individual image processing in, for example, Adobe Lightroom and/or Photoshop
  • final selection and sequencing of images for output and presentation

Editing | The Challenge

I recommend the next time you process a day's images that you run through the above workflow limiting yourself to, for example, ten final images for sharing with friends, family or your greater audience via social media.

After post processing has been completed spend some time playing with the order of your best images to discover the story or theme that merges from that days photography.

Forget About The Selfie Stick

Those who underestimate the power of image sequencing will likely fail to understand why it is they photograph what and how they do and, as a result, they'll miss an essential element in their own, individual creative journey. It's all about identity and it's important to understand that the camera photographs both ways.

Glenn Guy, Travel Photography Guru