9 Replies Latest reply on Apr 20, 2017 2:44 PM by davescm

    Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look




      I am really struggling to find a suitable editing method on Photoshop to get those subtle but eye catching tones that many photographers have mastered.


      The image I have was taken on a hot summers day, so I have some harsh light taking place, but I run the risk of flattening it from the editing processes. I have tried to understand Curves, levels, colour balance and really struggled in getting what I need. Have I gone about things the wrong way? or can I just do these tings in the Raw editor? Is there a simple way of doing it?!


      I want to get from this:



      To this:




      I can see the above picture seems less contrast perhaps? Something I've tried, but the result looks flat. 



      Any helps/tips/advice would be much appreciated.


      Thank you

        • 1. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
          davescm Adobe Community Professional

          Some of the issue would have been with a little fill in flash to reduce the contrast.

          If you want to get closer to the look of your second image you will need to increase exposure, reduce contrast and reduce vibrance as well as warm the image to take the blue out of the dress. That is best done with the raw image but using the camera raw filter on your image gave the following



          However, personally  I  would not go quite as desaturated as that second image but I would reduce the contrast and "warm" the pic with the colour temp controls to take the blue out of the dress. Again, I would prefer to do that with a RAW file - but with the file you posted I used the camera raw filter to do that as well as reducing clarity for a softer look.




          No rights or wrongs all just choices



          • 2. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
            Trevor.Dennis Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

            The flare look that so many wedding photographers seem to like is probably more of an 'in-camera' effect than done in post.  Shoot into the sun with no lens cap to get the flare/glare, and use enough fill flash to prevent a silhouette look.  But if I had to do it in Photoshop I'd move the colours towards yellow with a Color Balance layer, and raise the black point with a Levels layer and move the black output slider to the right.  I masked that out with full black over the bride and groom, and controlled it with mask properties reducing mask density, and adding feather.


            But, and I hate to say it, Lightroom might be a better tool for this as you can get a ton of presets for it, with every look under the sun.  I don't use Lightroom, but a quick Google found this among more hits than you could shake a ship full of sticks at.


            121 Best Free Lightroom Presets That You Will Fall in Love With


            But a lot of it is down to using decent gear.  Some folk like to think that the camera and lens makes no difference, but by heck they are wrong.  Cameras are getting a lot better though, and even the 7D2 can give decent results, but for Canon shooters I'd be looking at the 5D range as a starting point, and the 1D range if you don't mind the weight.  Lenses like the 24-70mm f2.8L and any of the 70-200mm L lenses will give beautiful results in either low contrast or back lit situations, and I wouldn't dream of doing a wedding with a decent ETTL flash on each camera.   I used 1DS3 and 1D4 for many years, but have settled on a 1DC and 5DS with 580EX2 strobes.

            • 3. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
              tomsavvy Level 1

              Hi both


              Thank you both very much for the useful tips on this.


              Editing has become a little more stress free! Looking forward, the camera settings would be useful to consider, pre edit!



              • 4. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                D Fosse Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                Also be careful not to blow out the sky completely like you have here. That always looks bad, no exception (well, maybe I can think of one or two exceptions, but as a general rule...)


                Using a fill flash has two advantages in a case like this. One is to reduce harsh contrast as mentioned. But in addition, you can reduce overall exposure, probably enough to salvage the sky here.

                • 5. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                  davescm Adobe Community Professional

                  I'll second that. Just completed a wedding shoot on Saturday - all external images used fill in flash and manual exposure (auto exposure modes with fill are just not consistent enough). Clouds flying across the sky meant light up and down like the proverbial - so very handy to have an assistant calling off from an incident light meter


                  Now to spend the next couple of days processing RAW files



                  • 6. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                    D Fosse Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    I have always had great respect for wedding photography, it's one of the most demanding assignments you can possibly have. This is one of the most important events in most people's lives, and they count on you to record it for posterity. It can't be reshot. That's a big responsibility, and you better not f* it up...

                    • 7. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                      davescm Adobe Community Professional

                      I used to do it a lot in the 80s and early 90s Dag. Less often these days, but I still find it rewarding to do occasionally when asked.

                      Technically the cameras have changed (was roll film back then on a Mamiya RB67) but the basic techniques for getting good exposure are the same. The key for me has always been - know the camera backwards and spend the time with the people to set up the images not messing around with the camera. To that end, as mentioned previously I always worked, and still do work, with an assistant to watch exposure on an incident meter (although he doesn't have to load film backs these days ).



                      • 8. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                        tomsavvy Level 1



                        So I have a shoot of just the bride this weekend. Looks like it will be overcast weather wise.


                        So perhaps an exposure down by one stop and fill in flash from the external flash unit, poss TTL? (Apologies, still getting to grips with flash units)

                        • 9. Re: Post editing tips. Getting that 'Wedding' look
                          davescm Adobe Community Professional

                          Hi Tom

                          I meter manually with an incident light meter and transfer that setting to the camera (which is set to manual). The ETTL flash is set to underexpose by 1 1/3 stops. That combination works well for fill on my Canon gear. Note -  I set my flash to Hi Speed Sync so that it will work at any shutter speed and I am not restricted to less than 1/200th. This is essential when the weather is sunny and I want to work at wide aperture to limit depth of field.


                          If you are unsure - get outside and take some practice shots, well ahead of meeting the bride, so you arrive at settings for fill that work well on your equipment.