St. Augustine Family Photographer | Danielle Brooks Photography
St. Augustine Family Photographer and Family Portrait Photography Studio. Specializing in Family Photography, Senior Portraits, and Head Shot Photography.

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St. Augustine photographer specializing in families, children, and seniors.

How To Have A Great Editing Workflow | St. Augustine Photographer

Today is the LAST DAY of the blog series! I will admit I'm a little sad. It has been one great week to have these wonderful women writing for the blog. I hope you all enjoyed it as much as we did! Today we have Kimberly Hartmann of Kimberly Hartmann Photography. Today she will be talking about how to have a great editing workflow. Don't we all need one? She has some great tips that will help you get your workflow into tip top shape. Hope you all enjoy!

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I know that I can’t be the only photographer who has gotten all excited right after a session, edited a few of the images that were my faves; and then the excitement wanes and eventually I am up all night trying to push myself to edit against the deadline I gave my client. Can we say ugh?! Working like this can run you ragged, especially if you have multiple sessions to edit.

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It is so necessary for you to find an editing workflow that works for your life and schedule and won’t leave you staring at a monitor forever. It has taken me a long time and the purchase of a few tools to get mine to where it is now. I am still trying to tweak it to make it better and faster. My hope is that you will be able to take what I give you here and create a workflow that suits your business and life.

The first thing I do after a session is upload my images and back them up. (I hope you are backing up your images… you will never be sorry for doing this.) Then I leave them alone for a day. Seriously. I want to be able to keep that excitement when editing my images as when I had taking them. If I consume myself with the same thing I get bored. I don’t think I am ADD, but I can certainly exhibit some symptoms! Ha!

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Next thing I do is cull and mark my images for editing. I work in Lightroom so it is really easy to arrow through and hit a number to mark the images I want to keep. I don’t rate images. It’s either a yes or no on keeping it. I don’t have time to do “this is better than that but not as good as this one so maybe…” If an image has good basics (exposure, focus, etc) then it is marked in this round of culling. Once I finally decided to stop overanalyzing each image I was able to focus on the best of my work. This also showed me where my strengths and weaknesses were and what I needed to work on in my shooting (continuous learning process).

Then I go through the marked images and unmark the ones I don’t want to edit. This removes duplicates or multiple angles of the same thing. When I am done with this round of culling I now have the best of the session that tells the story and includes the images I loved and that my client will want.

When editing the images, I always start with a clean edit: tweak exposure, color correct/saturate, crop/straighten, blemish removal, and slight sharpening. Then I apply whatever preset/action works for my style and how I want the finished look to be for the session. Once I have that done for the first image I can move swiftly through the rest.

I hope that this helps and I would love to hear about what you all do in your own editing workflows. 

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I am a lifestyle wedding and portrait photographer based in Gainesville, FL. I have been shooting professionally for the last 3 years but have been in love with photography since middle school. My current business dream is to shoot a destination wedding in Europe!

Be sure to LIKE Kimberly Hartmann Photography!