7 Post-Processing & Editing Tips to Improve your Travel Photos

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Vignetting is particularly good for portraits, and anywhere where you really want to make the subject of the image more clearly obvious to the viewer.

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4. How to Change Shadows and Highlights in Your Photos

Sometimes when we take a photograph, parts of the shot might end up being darker or brighter than we want. We refer to the dark areas of the shot as shadows, and the bright areas of the shot as highlights. We can fix this by changing the brightness of the shadow and highlight areas specifically, using either the “Shadow” or “Highlight” tool. This is a tool that works particularly well on RAW files as they retain more information on the shadow and highlight areas of an image compared to a compressed JPG, which discards most of this information in order to save file size.

Let’s take a quick look at adjusting shadows and highlights using Lightroom. In Snapseed, shadow and highlight adjustment can be found under the “Tune Image” setting.

Here’s a shot of a couple enjoying a bonfire and fireworks display in Edinburgh during Hogmanay:

Contrast tutorial with fireworks at hogmanay in Lightroom - before

As you can see, the fireworks and bonfire are clearly visible, as are the torches the couple is holding, but the rest of the shot is dark. Let’s adjust the settings and see what we can get.

Contrast tutorial with fireworks at hogmanay in Lightroom - after

In this version of the image, the couple is much more visible, as is the hill the fireworks are on and the surrounding crowd. To achieve this I increased the overall exposure of the image, making the whole image brighter, including the shadows and the highlights. Then, as the shadow areas were still a little dark, I increased those a little more.

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