How To Salvage a Photo.


Sometimes you might find you have taken a photo that’s blah but there’s something you still like about it. I was going through some photos that at first pass looked bad but I loved the the gestures in Molly’s legs so I decided to see what I could do. Above is the unedited photo RAW file. Certainly there are many issues with the photo. Molly started running unexpectedly and quickly. I decided to just shoot away but I had not time to compose the frame or adjust settings. Here’s how I tackled it.


First I started with cropping for a better composition. I didn’t want to crop in too tight and wanted to give Molly extra space to run into the left frame. So I had to leave part of the emu in initially. Then, there are many distracting elements I don’t want in the photo, including part of the out of focus emu, the bright red bucket and Tiago the cat underneath Molly’s neck. Also, you can see when cropping, there is part of the upper right frame missing.


So once cropped and straightened the photo, I cloned out all the distracting elements and fixed that upper right corner.


Next, the photo is underexposed and not well focused. In Photoshop I adjusted the levels to bring back some contrast and blacks. Then, I used Shake Reduction to add some sharpness. I’m not so concerned with her blurry hooves as I like the blurry movement. Then voila, the photo is now looking much better, with a more composed shot, no distracting elements and better exposed image.

Annmarie ColletteComment