Tag Archives: Photo Editor

1940s Glamorous Photo Shoot Post Processing

Doing decades photo shoots can be really fun and glamorous and with PortraitPro you can make your images look even better within minutes.

Untitled-15

Open your image in PortraitPro, the software will identity the face and have a pretty accurate mark up,  You can move the mark up dots to make it as accurate as possible to get the best results.

preset glamourois

Once you have adjusted the mark up, chose the Preset Glamorous on the top of the right hand side. This does most of the work for you, leaving you to just make your own personal preference tweaks to the images.

unsharpen the eyes a little bit

I reduce the sharpness of the eyes a very small amount.

make up lipstick

I also change the color of lipstick, red was a very popular color for lipstick in the 1940s, but due to the softness of my image due to her outfit I have gone for a pink color instead.

Simply chose your preference shade for the selection, it is important to make sure your lips are marked up accurately, it is simply if they aren’t quite right. You can change the mark up on the left hand image at any time.

hair

Next I change the color of the hair, as auburn hair was a popular color back then.

hair2

To do this, under the hair settings, click the View/edit Hair Area button. All the hair should appear pink, go over any bits that aren’t selected and click OK.

hair 3

Click through all the hair colors selecting the colors, that you like before deciding on your final color.

final temperature all way up copy

The last change that I make to the image is under Picture Controls, I move the  Vibrance slider up to full on this setting, this make the colors move in line with what you would get in the 1940s.

before and after

This took hardly anytime and you can really see the improvement in the image, and with Studio Max you can batch process them to save even more time.

To try this out for yourself, download a free trial of PortraitPro now.

Smart Photo Editor Transformations

You can completely transform your images with Smart Photo Editor, here are some ideas of the transformations you can make, with links to the tutorials.

ballet before and afterBallet Dancer

Untitled-11Changing the background to black and white.

double exposure before and afterDouble Exposure

bear before and afterTriple Exposure and Mirror Effect

rhino before and afterBlack and White Wildlife 

polariod before and afterPolaroid

elephant before and afterWatercolor

org all threeSharpen 

Click here to download a free trial of Smart Photo Editor, to try this tutorials out for yourself.

How to Steal Man Ray’s Portrait Style

Man Ray is one of the great first iconic photographers; his portrait style has something magical about it even to this day. He was one of the first artists that started to use photography as an art form.

He was revolutionary with his photographic techniques, including double exposure (which we will look at in a future blog) and early experiments with color, though black and white is what he is well known for.

Man Ray’s portraits were often around shoulder length, though there are some full length, you can see old photos of his that he would ‘crop’ by making what he wanted the photo to be.

This is a quick tutorial into how to turn your photos into his signature portrait style.

shape sliders

After marking up the photo in PortraitPro Body, I play around with the sliders a little bit, to see what looks best, the only setting I changed on mine was the Curves one, in this image you can’t see the difference too much.

face body

Don’t worry too much about the color and look of the make up, we are concentrating more on striking features, as this image will be made black and white in a minute.

black and white

In the picture settings, I move the slider to fully black and white, then move the others back and forth to get the lighting that I want.

end picutre man ray blog

This is the photo I export from PortraitPro Body and import into Smart Photo Editor.

cropped photo

The first thing that I do in Smart Photo Editor is crop down the size of the photo (the crop tool is on the right hand side.

object removal photo

After cropping the image to your chosen look, the background needed work on, a out of focus light grey background is what we are aiming for, it my photo there was somethings in the background that I needed to get removed to have that nice out of focus background. I used the Object Removal Tool which is found on the right hand side of the screen. As you can see, I have edited quite a few pieces. Don’t worry if like mine it doesn’t look great, we just want to remove the defining features.

select area

Next we are adding an effect to the background, you do this by selecting the Select Area button on the RHS, click on background, then color in what you want to add an effect to, on your left hand side of the screen, you can adjust the size of your selection tool.

Don’t worry if you go too far over, you can correct this easily by the erase from selection button on the right.

Click the Confirm Selection and Browse Effects button on the left when you have finished.

blurred background

The effect I chose was called ‘Blur’, you can change the strength of the effects you choose but I kept mine as full.

This created a lovely blurry effect with a slightly shadow look from the darker part of my background.

end picutre man ray blog_pe

Here is my end result of a Man Ray style portrait.

Hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and try out PortraitPro Body and Smart Photo Editor, they are both currently 50% off in the sale.

How to survive making a living with Travel Photography.

Travel photography is not always going to make you a lot of money, but the freedom of the lifestyle can be particularly attractive.  Living life on your own terms and being your own boss can be a great motivator.  You have the flexibility to take on any project you want, and reject the ones you don’t.

working on the beach

You don’t have to take the plunge immediately; you can start by doing things in your vacation time, and spending weekends photographing in your own town.  Wherever you live, it’s exotic to someone else.

Here’s what else to do before you go:

  • Get all the education you possibly can while you can. Acquiring skills in writing, in technical photography knowledge, in geography, human interest and art is all going to be useful when you have only your skills and ideas to live by.
  • Build up a portfolio and put in the images that you want to be paid to shoot. Don’t use things that you don’t enjoy doing or you’ll end up doing more of them, because people will think you like them.
  • Set up a photography website to host and license your images. Choose one that links through to purchasing prints. This can save you time and makes it easier for the client to purchase your products.  It can be automated throughout the site, and the customer will have very little interaction with you. It’s very time effective for you.
  • If you have no obligations, mortgage contracts, loans, or people to take care of, then you can reduce your expenditure considerably. If you give up paying rent, you also don’t need to pay the gas and electricity bills either.  You can choose where to live, in hostels, hotels, camping, in any country you like.  ( Within visa restrictions etc.)
  • It may be helpful if you’re located somewhere that the exchange rate is favorable to your salary currency. This effectively makes your hotel bill cheaper, and you can afford a higher standard than you would elsewhere.
  • Be prepared to take any assignments. Be flexible and open minded on what jobs you take.
  • Set up accounts with micro stock sites. It may not make you a lot of money, but it should become a steady income. Think about the unusual images you could take for these sites, because the usual angle has already been done so many times.
  • Set up your laptop with all of your photo editing software. Have everything you could need ready, PortraitPro and LandscapePro will save you time on editing in Photoshop, and they can both be used as plugins to Photoshop.
  • Be prepared for anything you might find. Have an app for model releases; you don’t want to not be able to use the image because you missed getting the stranger to sign a release.
  • Look for apps that will save carrying extra things.  In fact, anything you can carry in an app effectively weighs nothing.  Maps, editing tools, ebooks, you can carry all kinds in an app and you’d have your smartphone with you anyway.
  • Keep your kit lightweight. Remember not to take everything you could possibly need. It weighs a lot and you’ll regret carrying that spare lens when you are so tired you can’t make it up the next staircase or mountain peak or down the next road to get the shot. The best camera is the one that you have with you, and having to make do with the reasonable camera you have with you can make you more creative to get the shot you want.

Girl with laptop and camera

When you do leave on your travels, there are some things you need to remember while you’re away to help you stay organized and productive:

  • Keep regular hours when you can. Do what you should to avoid jet lag; don’t work through the night because you’ve just left somewhere where you’d normally be awake at that time. Sometimes that means staying up a little longer, sometimes it means going to bed before you’re ready.
  • Stay focused every day. You need to stay focused on the 2 or 3 things that you need to achieve each day to continue making a living. Set achievable goals, and make sure you do them. Don’t get overloaded by trying to do too much in one day, just take each day at a time and make each day productive.
  • Make room for down-time. Every day that you take a break, is a day that you don’t make any income. This is tough when you’re your own boss. You still need to have the discipline to put in a day’s work, and also to give yourself a day’s break.  There’s no one to throw you out of the office if you’re still working at midnight.
  • Don’t underestimate the people you meet. You never know who you might meet when you’re traveling.  Travel is a great opportunity to meet people you wouldn’t otherwise have bumped into.  Step out of your comfort zone and go somewhere you wouldn’t usually think about going. You might be surprised, and you might find your next project.
  • Do your photo editing as you go. If you’re taking lots of images every day, then will need to back up your photos and should do your editing regularly. Discard the images that won’t make the cut often too, so you’re not storing images that you’ll really delete when you get home.
  • Doing your basic photo editing in PortraitPro or LandscapePro. Doing it while the original is still fresh in your mind, and while you still remember what you wanted to portray in your image is useful.

 

Woman in red dress

People who buy often buy more

When booking a studio session with you, your standard deal will include the client receiving some images, but it’s a good idea to start with just a basic package, and allow for additional purchases.

It’s easier to get people to make more purchases, once they’ve decided to make one. People have a need to justify their original decision. Making more purchases makes it better, makes it more valuable, and it validates the original decision. If it is wise to buy more, then it is wise to buy in the first place.

So if they book a studio portrait, you may want to offer them one standard image from the session, and then a series of upgrades they can add on after:

  • The services of a makeup artist and stylist during the shoot, so they look their very best.
  • The portrait retouching with PortraitPro you do with their images after the shoot. You can now adjust the makeup in PortraitPro too, meaning they can get even more looks with just one session.
  • The digital copies of their edited images. – You don’t want to put out anything less than your best work, so only give them the edited images.
  • A range of different prints offers, a variety of sizes for different purposes, but it helps to define (for yourself) what purpose they would serve for the customer. (A wedding package, a senior’s package, graduation package, large families, small families, etc.)

You can start the process of turning people in to repeat customers by thanking them with a small gift, or extra.

A small handwritten thank you note after the customer has made their purchase will help to keep their purchase valuable, reminding them of what a great person you were to work with, and that their time with you was well spent.

You can offer special extra items to your service for repeat customers, or those you’d like to become repeat customers.

model  photo shoot

For instance, the portrait retouching could be the thing that you decide to “throw in for free”, because although it’s valuable to them to have retouched portraits, and you’d never want to give your clients a completely unretouched image,  your portrait editing can now be so easy and fast, that you can afford to offer it as a “free” extra.

PortraitPro will pay for itself in just a few sessions. Try it out today, and see how easy your portrait editing can be. 

Father and Son photo shoot potrait

People don’t buy what you sell.

You’re a great photographer, you have your own clear sense of style, you get regular bookings and plenty of referrals. And you sell lots of studio portraits, book several weddings per year, and always sell an album or 2. Sounds great right?

So how can it be better? Maybe you don’t realize that people don’t buy what you sell. They don’t come to you for a canvas to fill their wall space, they come to you for that warm fuzzy feeling when they see their whole family having a great time, and it’s there to greet them when they walk through the door after a tough day.

They don’t buy the album from you to have it gather dust in a drawer for 20 years, they’re buying something that will stand the test of time, and remind them how they felt on that special day. And it will be there for their children and grandchildren too. It will be a reminder of all the people who cared for them and wanted to be a part of that special day in their lives.

People who come to you for a family photoshoot don’t just want the images you provide. They’re coming to you for a great time, to enjoy some quality family time, doing something all together. It’s up to you to deliver them a fantastic experience as well as great quality images.

You’re not just a photographer, you’re a problem solver. Their problem is how they will record the moments in their life that they want to remember forever.

You are the solution to their problems. Sure they’re hiring you because they like your style, but you have to make sure that you’re answering their problems. How to portray their family in the best light, how to keep the kids entertained so they’ll sit still and smile for the photos. No one wants a grumpy child in a photo forever, or a long term reminder of a fractious teenager.

You need to be organized and know what you’re doing, be focused and clear in your instructions.

Not that there’s no time for messing around, having fun is what it’s all about, but as the professional, you need to know what you’re doing, and keep your mind on the end product. If it’s a wedding day, your time is very limited, so you have to make sure you’re capturing every necessary shot. Part of what they’re paying for is your professionalism.

Mother and Daughters portrait

When they come back to view your images, remind them that it’s not just a canvas for their living room wall, it’s a reminder of the great memories they made that day together, whether it was in the studio with you, or on their wedding day, or other special event.

It’s that warm and fuzzy feeling over and over again. It’s worth far more than what you’re charging, it’s priceless.

Your time is valuable too, and you also don’t want to spend hours locked in the editing room, you want to be out there photographing clients, or spending your own quality time with your family.

Portrait editing can now take you minutes not hours, leaving you plenty of time to spend making your own memories too.

PortraitPro Studio Max has the automatic tools needed to retouch lots of images at once, so you can let it do the hard work, and leave you more time to spend on other things.

Try PortraitPro for free today.

10 Things to photograph on the last weekend of summer

Whether you want to escape the city, or head to the city this weekend, there are lots of things to photograph this weekend. If the weather’s good, it’s a great time to get out with your camera and shoot some last shots of summer.

Here are our top 5 interesting cities to see this weekend:

Philadelphia

In the City :  Climb the Rocky steps, pay what you wish on the first Sunday of the month, and pay a visit to the Art Museum, for some great, iconic images of the city too. This is one of the best views of Center City. 

Out of town: Head to Longwood Gardens for Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience. Get some great images with light and dark.

Chicago

In the City: For the best architectural views of Chicago, take the Architectural River tour. Afterwards, stop off at Millennium Park to see the Bean. There’s always something interesting to discover in the Park.

Out of Town: Not so far out of town, you can hit the beach. One of the great things about Chicago is that you’re so close to a beach. Walk up Michigan Avenue to find Oak Street beach.  It’s not the ocean, but it’s still a great place to soak up the sun and get some great images of the sky scrapers in the background. The kids will love it too.

New York

In the City: In the city that never sleeps it’s hard to choose what to do, but on Labor Day Weekend,  most of the usual tourist destinations will still be open, all the restaurants and shops will still be open too. Live like a tourist for a day, even if you’re not. Check out the view from Top of the Rock, for the best view of the Empire State Building!

View of Empire State building from Top of the Rock

Out of Town: It’s a long way to go to leave NYC behind you, but with Central Park right in the middle, why would you need to escape to the countryside? You can manage to pretend you’re away from it all, sunbathing and taking in the greenery.  Take a picnic, and check out the Carousel too.  The city’s so big that there are several parks to choose from, but Central Park’s almost 6 times bigger than Vatican City, so there’s plenty of space to escape the bustling crowds and find your own place to relax.

 Washington D.C.

In the City: With flight and gas prices down again, it’s a great time to discover the capital, and the museums are free to visit too. Check out the National Gallery of Art, across the street from the National Archives. Visit all the museums, they’re all free!

Out of Town: Why not visit the University of Maryland’s Dairy for some handmade ice cream. As the end of summer arrives, you can capture some portraits of people eating their ice creams.

Milwaukee

In the City:  Check out the Harley Davidson Factory this weekend at the Custom Bike show event. There’ll be lots of people willing to pose with their bikes and there’s music and food too, so there’s something all the family can enjoy. Further down 6th street, you can take in another tour, Milwaukee’s hidden gem, Great Lakes Distillery, Wisconsin’s first distillery since prohibition.

Out of Town: Take a trip to Leon’s frozen custard on South 27th, for some typical Wisconsin frozen desert, and that retro 50’s feel. Supposed to be the inspiration for the diner in Happy Days, Leon’s still has it’s original signage.

Wherever you are this Labor Day weekend, look for some interesting portraits. Take the time to look around you and see what interesting images you can find. PortraitPro will  help you with your portrait retouching, so you always get the best images. Try it for free today.

Happy 4th July!

 

Family on 4th July

Whether it’s grilling out in the park, on the beach, or catching the fireworks, there’s something for everyone to see and do on 4th July.

If you’re at home, check out your local fireworks displays and if you’ve got a trip planned, don’t forget to find out what happens there too. You might find something you’ve never seen before.

Benjamin  Frankin said: “ Time is Money”.

PortraitPro Studio Max batch processing can save you time on your portrait editing this weekend, leaving you more time to spend with your family.

Enjoy the sunshine and the savings! Download a free trial today.

 

Summer with a camera

50 Ideas for Summer Photo Challenge

If a 365 day photo challenge seems too much, how about a project just for the summer?

Taking on a project can help to stimulate your creativity.  Just as having a business goal can keep you focused on where you want to get to with your business, having a goal for your creativity can keep you focused on being creative; helping you to think outside the box.

Check out our 50 ideas for summer photos:

  1. Ice cream
  2. Fireworks
  3. A full moon
  4. Colorful flowers
  5. A picnic
  6. Childhood friends
  7. Daydreaming
  8. On the beach
  9. At the park
  10. Grilling out
  11. Chilling out
  12. Fun in the sun
  13. Cool drinks
  14. Sunglasses and sun lotion
  15. A June wedding
  16. 4th July
  17. August vacation
  18. Labor Day
  19. Museum visit
  20. A silhouette
  21. Pets enjoying the sun
  22. Summer sports games
  23. Sunrise
  24. Black and white
  25. Something red
  26. After dark
  27. A special occasion
  28. Making waves
  29. Something that flies
  30. My favorite food
  31. Close-up
  32. A new friend
  33. Things that grow
  34. A treasured moment
  35. My favorite place
  36. Something tiny
  37. Laughter
  38. Shadows
  39. All dressed up
  40. Something exotic
  41. Movement
  42. Words
  43. A low angle
  44. Curves
  45. Leading lines
  46. On the street
  47. A kiss
  48. A self-portrait
  49. Reflections
  50. Happiness

Don’t forget to use PortraitPro on your people photos, and why not try out Smart Photo Editor for everything else?

Now why not share the results with us on our Facebook page?

Check out our Pinterest pages for more inspiration.

Download your free trial of PortraitPro here.

 

Tree of Business plan items

Business Plans for Photographers

 

It’s important to occasionally take the time to refocus on your business, remembering why you do what you do. Writing a business plan can be a useful way to keep you on track. Having it written down gives you something to refer back to; to remind yourself where you wanted to be and reassess if necessary.

A business plan is a necessary requirement if you’re ever applying for a business loan. If you want to expand your business, purchase new equipment or new premises, then you may want to apply for a business loan. You should have a clear idea of what the extra expenditure will help you to achieve, and how long it will take to make it profitable. You’ll also need to take into account the cost of the loan, the interest charged on the loan, and this will be an additional business expense for the duration of the loan.

Business plans for your own purposes should contain the following items;

  • Executive summary – A brief description of the items contained in the document, a summary of the overall findings.
  • Business Description – a detailed description of the business, the services offered.
  • Competitive Analysis – a detailed and honest appraisal of the competition, which might be local, but shouldn’t forget the bigger picture and the availability of services online.
  • Operations and Management – the way the business will operate, who will be responsible for what tasks, and who will manage the business. This may all be you, but it’s useful to remind yourself exactly what you will need to do.
  • Products and Services – the products and service that you offer. Be focused about this, you can’t be all things to all people, and you don’t want to stretch yourself too thin. You will also find this useful in defining yourself and your unique place in the market.
  • Sales and Marketing – Where you will make your sales, how much you will charge for your services and products. You should also give some thought to a marketing plan specifically to detail what marketing activities you are going to do to support your business.
  • Financial Factors – where your finance will come from initially, how your revenue from sales will cover your expenses, premises, materials and most importantly, salaries; take in to account how much you need to pay yourself to live, and how much you can afford to pay any employees.
  • Appendix – Should contain relevant resumes, permits, and leases necessary for the business to operate.

If a loan provider requires additional information, they should inform you of what they require.

It’s in your own interests to be as honest as you can with your assessments. If you make an accurate assessment of your competition, then you will have a good idea of what will set you apart from the competition, and see what will give you your edge.

You also need to make an accurate assessment of how much revenue you will need to make in order to cover your business expenses, so you know what salary you can pay yourself, which should hopefully cover your living expenses. Hiring additional employees will increase your expenses, but may help you take on more clients and generate more revenue

One of the ways you can save yourself time and money, is to invest in portrait editing software that will greatly speed up your photo editing time, and leave you time to do all the other activities that you need to do to run your business. PortraitPro can automate the process and give you creative control over the whole editing process.

Get your free trial today and see how much time you can save.