"They just slap a filter on it"- Chatting Professional Photography

Hi All,

So, as many of you know, I offer Maternity, Birth and Newborn photography.

I love it. I love everything about it, especially including the editing. This is where I get to put my own little flair on these already gorgeous photos...

Unfortunately I see a lot of people commenting on my and other photographers offers of birth photography in particular- "Oh I could just do that on my phone and slap a filter on it like they do!"

Without hulk smashing my computer here, instead I am going to explain to you and show you just how much we DON'T slap a filter on your images.

Example number One!

Straight out of camera.jpg

Here is a our gorgeous model. At the place where I hold my Lush sessions (go check them out and book yourself in now, I'll wait!) there is this gorgeous window with curtains that are the brightest of bright red. While red is a colour I adore and is also a colour of my branding, red generally isn't a colour that looks great on peoples skin. So I took this picture already with the idea in my mind of creating a silhouette image.

So here you can see, 1- The image straight out of the camera. This means straight as I shot it, or how it looked on the day we took it. iF you were there when we took the pic, this is what ou would have seen (we me squatting awkwardly on a step to get the shot lined up!).

2- For fun I went through hall of the presets in Lightroom that I have that would make for the CLOSEST MATCH for the final image that I edited. I didn't want to put a "crappy" preset/filter on because I wanted to show you this and let the image run a fair race against my own editing!

3- My final edit... Can you see the difference between mine and the one with the "filter slapped on"? Its now a true silhouette. The light is sitting much nicer on our models face, showing just enough of an outline but not leaving her in too much shadow. I've made the rest of her body into that silhouette effect without wiping out or leaving in too many details. Ive also brightened those whites and darkened those black tones. 



So here is another example of "filter slapping", or NOT filter slapping to be exact.


Here I have done the same thing- Taken the original image and compared it to the final version. A version with a filter on and no other editing, and a version that I had edited.

Again, I sorted through all of the presents (filters) I own and found the one that is closest to the way I edited the photos so that we were running the fairest race we could. I chose that present because I love the warm tone in particular.....

BUUUUUTTTT..... It doesn't quite make the image what the final result is, does it? It doesn't help the teepee sticks pop, it doesn't create a nice sharp focus on our model, it doesnt' highlight that wonderful chandelier above her head, it doesn't bring up he beautiful greens of the trees and grasses around her.. It also doesn't smudge out that road the runs behind her or the stump beside her....

So there we have it. "Filters" vs true editing... So the next time you hear someone say that they can "do it on my phone" or that professionals just have a fancy camera but "just slap a filter on the pictures", you can think back to this and know the truth!

I hope you liked this insight and that it made sense for you! Shout out if you have any questions of you would like to book in for a photography session!

Lots of love,

Sandy Tai,

Your Ballarat Birth Doula, Educator and Photographer xxooo