Don't be an Instagram photo jerk

You can get great-looking photos without overdoing the Instagram effects. Here are some tips on how to take control of your photo editing.

By Michael Homnick, PC World |  Consumerization of IT, instagram, Photo editing

For example, if you've taken a portrait and your subject's face is in the shade, adjusting the highlights and shadows will often reveal hidden details without affecting the rest of the image.

Contrast

Why contrast is important: Adjusting an image's contrast is a great way to make the photo pop, but be careful: Few things look worse than an unnaturally overcontrasted photo.

How to manage contrast in your photos: Your photo editor's contrast tool makes lights lighter and darks darker. The goal is to enliven a photo whose low contrast makes it to look dull and boring, while refraining from imparting so much contrast that the image looks look oversaturated and unnatural. To avoid going too far, it's a good idea to try out different incremental contrast levels, and see which one works best for a particular image.

Temperature

Why temperature is important: A photo's temperature helps determine the image's overall feel or mood. Most digital cameras provide options for controlling white balance; this entails adjusting photos' color temperature to achieve a neutral value for white in different lighting environments.

How to manage temperature in your photos: A white-balance photo-editing tool allows you to change the temperature of your images after the photo is taken. Adjusting your photo to make it cooler combats harsh, orange lighting. Conversely, making an image warmer can help photos taken in environments with prevalent blue or fluorescent light look more natural. As with adjusting contrast, a trial-and-error approach to adjusting an image's temperature makes sense.

And there you have it. The road to recovery may be paved with vintage barns and orange-tinted cats, but with a little work you can kick your Instagram addiction and take your photography to the next level.


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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