Ask Me Anything... {6/7/16}

image1-2"Ask Me Anything..." is a weekly blog segment where I answer your questions about photography, me, or...anything. Check back next Monday on my Instagram and Facebook pages where I'll be taking all of your questions. 1- How long does it take you to edit a Portrait Session?

A Portrait Session usually takes me about 2-3 hours to edit. This depends on how many photos I deliver from the session and how long I spent with the client. For Lifestyle sessions, I deliver a minimum of 25 edited digital images (but usually deliver more). For Engagement Session, I deliver a minimum of 50 edited digital images. It's important for me to have full creative control over which images go out to my client so I pull what I feel are the best images from the session and deliver them. I try to deliver a wide range of landscape and portrait crops, full body and headshot, details, etc. Images are delivered through a personal Pixieset gallery.

2-How do you handle a wedding in cloudy conditions?

I get this question all the time. While a cloudy day can certainly change the lighting conditions of your shoot, it is absolutely still possible to achieve gorgeous images. In fact, there are quite a few pros to shooting in cloudy conditions. First of all, the clouds act as  natural diffuser to the sun. This means you get even shadows and don't have to worry so much about which directions your subject is facing. Second, depending on the type of clouds, you can get some really dramatic shots with rolling clouds coming in, which I love!

There are definitely some things you need to be aware of when shooting in cloudy conditions though. Because you're dealing with kind of flat, diffused light, the subject's skin and shadows can feel a bit flat as well. My suggestion is to find a natural reflector to shoot near (White building, white ground, white sand, etc) or use an actual reflector to add a bit of depth to your subject or "fill light." In addition, shooting in cloudy conditions can give off sort of a grey tone to your subject's skin. I usually counteract this by adding a bit of warmth in my edit, but generally embrace the fact that the image will appear to be on the cooler side.

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Luke and Hayley 6


3- How long did it take you to find your editing style?

Finding your editing style is so important and takes time. When I first started taking pictures, I knew the look I was striving for but couldn't quite get it there. It literally is a matter of sitting in front of your computer over a culmination of hours and hours to play with how you want your shadows and highlights to look, how saturated you want your colors and tones to be, etc. I've always gravitated toward the classic elegance of film so when I discovered Mastin Labs, I knew it was love at first site. About 90% of the time I'd say I edit with the Fuji400h preset because it allows me to maintain consistency and I just like how it looks. I then add little tweaks to shadows, highlights, colors, and sharpness. Sometimes I switch it up, if I feel a client's skin, wardrobe, or the landscape calls for a different look.

In answer to your question though, I don't know how long it took me to find my editing style because I'm still finding it. The style I currently have has taken me about two years to find, but I'm 100% sure that I won't edit the same way my entire career. That's what I love about my allows me the space I need to constantly grow and evolve as an artist.