Overcoming the hurdle of Post-Processing in Photography

This blog is for everyone who wants to be a good photographer but is frustrated at how to start post-processing of the pictures taken.

The Background:

Even though I have used Adobe Photoshop very well in the past for designing posters, certificates, creating website banners, etc. But all that was about 5-6 years back when I had my own website and I also used to manage websites for my college fests as well. However, I don’t do web designing and development anymore so that is that.

3 years back I bought my first DSLR and got very enthused with amateur photography. However, I was never satisfied with my photography because other folks simply took such beautiful photographs with such vibrant colors and which I could never achieve myself. Soon, I realized that it was due to good post-processing using Photoshop. After all, capturing good scenes with good compositions was only half the job and improving the picture in Photoshop was the 2nd half, which I never did.

I could never really understand how to begin with this because of one very grave mistake I was making. And that mistake was that I was trying to understand Photoshop again from scratch. I was trying to understand each menu, feature, filter, effect, etc. including what is hue, saturation, layers, blurs, blah blah blah. And all this was turning out to be too much to remember, too much to consider, as a result of which I never really saw a gain from this in the short or medium term. So, frustrated, I quit post-processing.

Over the last 2 years, I’ve travelled extensively to some of the most beautiful European cities like Stockholm, Paris, Rome, Venice, Barcelona, etc. and captured thousands of photographs with my camera and even published them on my Facebook account, but one thing that always disturbed me was that my pictures were never really any good since I never did any post-processing.

However, since last few days, I have been lucky to have taken interest in some Photoshop tutorial online and I have been able to identify simple ways to enhance my pictures easily and quickly. In the process, I learnt how to further ease my work by using actions and simply applying these actions to separate images. Soon, even that was not enough and I learnt creating complex actions and finally using these complex actions in batch processing to apply them automatically to a large selection of my photographs.

For example, see the two pictures below:

Original Image

Enhanced Image

The first picture was the original photograph that I took and the second picture was after enhancing it, attaching a watermark and Saving it, all using a single complex action, that I created myself, without trying to learn photoshop from scratch. See some more:

Palace Cinema Copenhagen – Original Image

Palace Cinema Copenhagen – Enhanced Image

MY Recommendations for easy tutorials for beginners in Photoshop:

(None of these tutorials are written by me but I am happy to share them with you.)

You can enhance pictures using Lab Method as explained in the following blog. I really like this method and the picture above has been enhanced using this only:
http://digital-photography-school.com/turn-ho-hum-color-into-wow-with-photoshop

Inserting Watermark + including that in an Alignment + running them on multiple pictures in Batch mode:
http://www.visualwatermark.com/blog/2011/05/04/photoshop-batch-watermarking/

To accomplish Save for Web in Batch mode, refer to this blog:
http://anyutilities.blogspot.in/2011/01/batch-save-for-web-photoshop-cs3.html

I hope these tutorials were helpful for you. For me, these have provided the much needed confidence to understand how to make my pictures look better and now I have more confidence in my photography than I had before.

I hope my sharing this will enable more like me to gain confidence with Photoshop. I will certainly share more tutorials that I come across, but I hope some of you readers will also share some good tutorials with me.

Please note, I am still a beginner at post-processing so if you find my pictures not well processed, please share my mistakes with me by commenting below.

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About Shitij Bagga
I am a blogger, writer, amateur photographer, obsessive reader. I like writing short stories and some of my works are published as multiformat ebooks, that can be downloaded from Smashwords. My author's page at Smashwords is: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/shitijbagga I am a huge fan of reading and collecting books of almost all genres. I love reading science, philosophy, literature and fiction, psychology, biographies, history, leadership, etc. I am a habitual reader and not a single day passes by without me having read at least a page out of any one of my hundred plus book collection. My favorite works being the complete collection of Sherlock Holmes as well as the complete Jeeves and Wooster series by PG Wodehouse. Reading is a part of me that I can never let go and so most of my blogs would be based on ideas that I got from reading. Photography is also one of my hobbies and I love clicking pictures of the places that I visit. I will be uploading some of my favorite pictures in my blog as well.

4 Responses to Overcoming the hurdle of Post-Processing in Photography

  1. 8teen39 says:

    Thank you for this introduction to Photoshop. I haven’t purchased it yet as I’ve found a free online site that is good enough for where I’m at right now in my development. But it’s just a matter of time.

    • Shitij Bagga says:

      Hi, Yes, Photoshop is a pretty expensive affair but if it can be done online for free, its great. Which website are you using for your processing needs?

      Regards,
      Shitij

      • 8teen39 says:

        Well, I know it’s not Photoshop, but it still gives me some room to play. The site is Picmonkey. All free right now though I get the impression they will soon switch to maybe a two level sytem; free and subscription.

  2. Ian Beattie says:

    Thanks for visiting my blog and I have to agree regarding the on-line tutorials, it’s the easiest way to learn and you can do it in small steps. There is just so much to learn with Photoshop at times it does my head in 🙂

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