I'm just starting out in photography and looking for some advice regarding editing to achieve certain sorts of look. I am using a Sony A7ii with a few prime lenses. The first is this sort of glossy look (I know Instagram is not the best for image quality but even there you can see the difference clearly in my shots and the look I am talking about.) It seems to be quite saturated without looking unnatural and very sharp. Obviously these guys are professionals and shooting in good light with good lenses but all their photos have this consistent 'glassiness' or pop to them. My lenses aren't the best but I think it is a matter of technique rather than gear. Are there any processing methods or other advice that can help to achieve this?
Mine for comparison: https://www.instagram.com/jbstearn/
The second look I am interested in is this hazy 'dreamy' style, which is almost the opposite of the previous style. Is this using the Orton effect? https://www.instagram.com/chris_frost_photography/
I am not looking to copy these styles as I would like to develop my own, but I would like to know how to capture and process to achieve these looks to increase my options when creating an image.
I don't use instagram and the links don't come out too well on my phone.
But to me some of the shots may be HDR. Nothing wrong with that.
Some have filters over the lens at the moment of capture and some have had filters applied by software.
Personally I'm not competent enough to stylise my images and just try to tart the colors a little bit and add a little sharpen here and there.
Maybe give Luminar a try?
It's a bit more forgiving than Lightroom with a lower learning curve for results that pop.
Luminar is a good call
as for the glossy/saturated look, try the Lux slider in instagram. Basically I recall it fiddles with saturation, contrast, curves and so on.
luminar might actually have something similar.
for the hazy look, go out when it is misty and shoot towards the sun. Forest, when the bloom is in the air will not require mist.
Hi, Hamish is a resident of this parish so you might get an answer direct from the horse's mouth. To me his photos look pretty natural with perhaps some shadow and colour boosting on the subject to make them pop.
Not sure about the others...lots of different techniques I'd say HDR, long exposure, maybe focus stacking......it's hard sometimes to differentiate between great light and great editing!!!!!
Your photos are really good btw!!!
Only had a very quick look but I think in the second case you are right about orton effect, and probably the clarity brought down a touch. Much more important there though is getting out early morning for nice soft light and a touch of morning mist which naturally softens the image.
Simon Baxter’s YouTube channel might be worth a look if you are interested in that sort of soft dreamy woodland style. He’s got some interesting and useful video’s about his process.
Also remember to think about what style best communicates what you want, and what suits your images. I’ve found it easy to get sucked into whatever the current trend is on Instagram (which often ages fast and badly) and lose sight of your own style. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun and useful to play around with different styles and techniques but I’ve found insta to be a mixed blessing in that regard as the newsfeed type delivery often rewards bright and eye catching over real quality.
You’ve got some nice images. A nice natural look to them rather than the garish, hyper real, over saturated look that often typifies Instagram. I really like the portraits of the farmer.
Hamish was indeed kind enough to answer some questions I had about lenses, and I know he is using a Sony A7x of some sort, which is why I don't want to go down the route of blaming my equipment! I agree that his photos look natural but with vibrant colours, and not overdone like a lot of the 'adventurer' types on Instagram, who seem to put the same filter on every photo. I am mostly interested in understanding the techniques rather than just downloading some presets. For example, that 'dreamy' look is not really my style and often overdone but I am interested in which variables create that look (e.g. lower clarity as suggested). I am often surprised watching tutorials of landscape photographers by how much they will push some sliders, such that the image barely resembles the photographed scene (here is an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-WaiJOE_JI&), but I guess that is all part of creating your own style.
To my eye, that's not a good look after all the darkroom messing around.
The sky's too dark to even have any hint of a resemblance to how the foreground is so brightly lit.
I agree here, I think it's a rather ordinary photo originally and the interest comes from the huge contrast which was not actually present in the scene. But I suppose that is what makes photography interesting, everybody has their own interpretation of the world and I see all these editing skills just as tools to help form that image.
The linked video is a great example of "How not to do it, ever"
His starting photograph was rather flat, probably more than a human on scene would percept it. Some contrast would have been justified there. But he just completely changed the existing lighting of the landscape. And after such a lot of work, any Instagram filter upped to eleven could do the same instantly
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