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how do you edit?

one question we get asked frequently is how to edit. we all have our own style, steps to take, tricks to do. there is no wrong or right way....these are just to help you find your way
so, here are a couple of before and afters....

before (straight out of the camera)- photo and edit by the amazing
meg borders

the edit:
Adjust white balance and cropped to taste in Lightroom
Opened in CS4:
1. Florabella's Sharpen/Defog @ 40%
2. Florabella's Cosmopolitan @ 25%
3. TRA's get faded (winter) @ 15%
4. TRA's Lux @ 22%
5. Wynona's Summer at 40%
6. Contrast +10
7. Dodge left eyes and and parts of face @ 5%
8. Sponge tool to grass/background/shirt @ 12%
9. Burn tool to burn edges @8%

the final image-

before (straight out of the camera)- photo and edit by the amazing michelle kane

the edit-
Open in Lightroom:
Blacks: +8
Contrast: +36
Clarity: +10
Export into PS...
1: duplicate background 3 times. ((might need to turn the eyeballs off the upper duplicates to see effect on the working duplicate layer)) On the layer closest to the background, set to multiply 100% opacity, use a white layer mask to mask effect off of skin and slightly off of the dark background and dress where it gets too dark and looses detail.
2: On the second duplicated copy, set to soft light 100% opacity and add gaussian blur of 15 pixels. Add a black layer mask and mask effect onto only the grass and apples.
3: On the third duplicated copy, set to multiply 100% opacity. Add a black layer mask and mask the effect only around the edges of the image to slightly vignette.
4: Flatten. Duplicate background and run Portraiture on the Smoothing Normal setting.
5: Add a black layer mask to the Portraiture layer and paint the smoothing effect in only on the skin. Flatten
6: Duplicate the background, set to soft light and go to Filter > Other > High Pass and set the pixel radius to 4. Add a black layer mask and mask it only onto the face to sharpen.

the final image-

thanks meg and michelle!!!


  1. I just love these features....thanks for the tips, ladies! :)

  2. I ♥ this stuff! Awesome, thanks :)

  3. Awesome. Thank you for all the information. Can't wait to try them out.

  4. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I can't wait to try some of this out! I love both of the edits!!! I know I have more I can learn about photoshop so this gives me a few new things to try! Feel free to post more of these!!!!! :)

  5. Anonymous11/16/2010

    The second edit is great, the baby looks pink and natural. I'm liking less and less the actions where the children have a green tone like the first, makes them look unnatural and the skin looks neon/alien.


  6. Wow - that 2nd edit is amazing! One day I will grow up from my free Picnik editing program to Lightroom - amazing!

  7. Kathy R11/16/2010

    Wow! Great tips. Thanks!

  8. This is great!! Can you do more posts like this?!?!

  9. I love seeing these things! I love doing before and afters on my facebook page and people are usually amazed! Editing is sooo much fun!

  10. It is so fun to see how different people edit and get new ideas that you never would have thought of! Great post! Thanks so much!

  11. Thanks so much for sharing!!! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  12. Thanks for this. The 2nd one is definitely the style of editing I tend to go for. I love LR and prefer to do the majority of my editing there.

  13. Kristin R11/24/2010

    What camera and lens are the second shooter using? That is beautiful SOOC!!

  14. impressive processing, looks great.


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