INSTAGRAM

HOW I EDIT MY INSTAGRAM PHOTOS

Instagram has definitely got to be one of the most frustrating apps I've ever come across in my life, that could possibly be me just being dramatic but I think if I was to speak for the entire blogosphere, they would all agree with me.  However, frustration aside, Instagram is a great app to share my blog images and more recently, it's sort of becoming my photography portfolio. By no means am I photographer, in fact, I'm nowhere near calling myself a photographer because in all honesty I just turn my camera on, click a button and hope for the best! I don't use those fancy editing software like photoshop because I'm just so basic and it's bloody confusing, I literally use the free apps you can find in the app store and the apps you probably have in your photography folder on your phone. I have, however, recently just purchased Lightroom so if a Lightroom tutorial sounds more up your street then let me know down in the comments. 

The majority of the images on my insta are taken with the Canon 70d with a 40mm lens, this honestly is just my preference for my insta theme (I wouldn't call it a theme, more of a style & colour choice) to look consistent in quality. To be completely honest with you, you can literally take similar quality photos on your iPhone using the portrait mode if you have it. Right, so bear with me because I do sometimes edit my pictures in a particular order, I'll post a before and after picture so you can sort of get an idea of the way I edit my pictures


So, to start off with, I use the app Snapseed and the majority of the editing goes down in this app. It's a free app that you can download from the apple app store and it's honestly a life saver and so simple to use. For the image above, you can see the image is looking a little dull and flat and you can see a cheeky little Twix rapper chilling on the floor there... totally not ideal but you have to deal with these kinds of things when you're shooting. Once you open an image in snapseed and start editing, you'll be shown a vast amount of filters, so obviously, everything is down to personal preference but I really enjoy manually editing my pictures and I feel that the filters on snapseed make the images some look unrealistic or over edited. If you head over to the tools section you will find a large menu of editing features and it's pretty intimidating but I legit only use a few of the features.




 I've highlighted the features that I use for practically all of my images in yellow and the ones I sometimes use in blue, I should possibly go into more detail about each setting but that would be an awfully long post so I'll just go through the features I used for this image. I started off by using the 'tune image' feature, this basically controls the brightness, contrast, highlights, lowlights, saturation and warmth. Every image is different so each setting will be set on different levels but for this image, the brightness is set to +10, contrast is set to +20, saturation is set to +8 and the highlights are set to +76. Of course, depending on the image your settings may be different but I normally just have a play around with the settings until I'm happy with how it's all looking.

The details tool controls the sharpness and the structure of the image, I have absolutely no idea on what 'structure' actually means or what it does but for this image, the setting is on +7. I think it defines the entire image and makes the textures of the walls and the clothes stand out, I mainly wanted this setting to stand out on the girls instead of the background as I will be editing that part later on.

The healing tool will be your best friend or your worst enemy, in the original image you can see that there is a Twix packet on the floor and that was a pain in the bum to edit out. I use the healing tool on snapseed to sort of photoshop it out, it took a lot of time and a few attempts but I think I did a pretty good job at removing it. You basically have to draw over the areas you want to 'heal' or remove and I would recommend doing it in small pieces instead of just swiping over the entire thing. 






The second app that I love to use is face tune 2, everyone loves a bit of face tune don't they? Don't worry, I don't blur out anyone's skin (except my own) or fiddle around with changing the shape of my model's bodies. I only really use it to whiten, sharpen and to defocus the image, I know defocusing the image seems a bit pointless as I've just sharpened it but I've only started using this setting recently on backgrounds. I shoot with the 40mm lens and I have to stand quite far away to get a full-length shot so to get that nice blur on the background is pretty difficult. The 40mm is really good for close-up beauty shoots as the blurring effect is brilliant but, for outfit shots... not so much. 

I use the defocus tool on the lowest setting or maybe +2 or +3. Be very careful if you choose to do this because the higher the setting, the more ridiculous the blur begins to get, you also have to colour in with your fingers on the bits that you want to blur. If you're taking pictures of products or people and you choose to use this setting, make sure you go around the outline of the subject you want to stay sharp with the eraser tool. This is so the blur looks more like you've shot with a super snazzy and background blurring lens and not botched up the editing. It also makes the subject stand out and pop in the image... am I making sense? Please let me know down in the comments if I'm not lol.



Finally, it's nearly over folks... I use VSCO for every photo I take. Filters might not be for some people but I only use them a teeny bit, For this image, I used the filter A6 and you can go in and adjust the intensity of the filter. This is entirely down to your personal preference but I just like the effect that the VSCO filters give to my images and it doesn't really affect the quality of the overall image. I chose to use the A6 filter as it made the dark areas of the image (brick wall, the girl's hair, Kirby's trousers and Megan's boots) really deep and the highlights (windows, skin. I also feel like it's made the red undertones in the image really stand out and I loved the look of that for a slight theme change on insta. 

I hope this has been informative and a little insight into the way I edit my Instagram images. Like I said, I'm no professional but I'm doing more and more shoots these days and I'm learning so much from every single one. Hopefully, if I'm still taking photos by next year, I will have an updated blog post for you guys and we can all see how much change there is between editing and photo styles. 

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4 comments

  1. SO using these tips next time I edit my photos! I absolutely love the way you edit xxx

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  2. These are such great tips. Thank-you for sharing.

    http://ohduckydarling.com

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  3. Great tips! I'm really trying to be better about my photography but I always look at the pictures and hate them. I'll definitely give these tips a try!

    -GG
    www.girlingamba.com

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  4. I love snapseed! I only downloaded it recently but it's been a game changer. These are really useful tips- I always think your photography is amazing x Sophie / www.prettyandpolished.co.uk

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