Many of you will be familiar with digital photography and digital image enhancement. You might have used software, for example, to remove red-eye, or brighten up the picture a touch, or you might have used one of a number of packages available to perform a wide array of “post-processing” to your shots. Whatever your experience in this area, here are a few pointers to ensure that you get – and demand – the right results from your Wedding photographer.
When working with any digital image, best results will be obtained when the photographer is using a colour-calibrated monitor. Can you be sure that the colours on the screen will be matched by the printed photograph? The subtle colours and tones of modern wedding attire make it essential that your finished photograph captures the beauty and delicate hues of your Wedding day.
In my opinion, less is definitely more when it comes to image enhancement, although don’t be afraid to ask your photographer for something just that little bit different. In my opinion, a very subtle effect being asked for at the moment is the “focal black and white”: this is where the underlying image is black and white, but a focal part of the image – for example the bride’s bouquet – are left in colour.
Another effect which really captures the timeless intimacy of a wedding is the duotone – basically, black and white but in a different colour. Of course the most common of these is “Sepia” – the light tan coloured photographs – however a number of other colours lend themselves to this technique. Think about the colour theme for your wedding perhaps, or choose a pastel blue or ivory to warm up the image.
In addition to altering the colour balance of the picture itself, digital enhancement techniques make it possible to add a number of “special effects”. For example, the addition of “lens flare” can give the image a magazine-like quality, or effects which would be difficult in practice – for example bubbles – could be added.
Whatever your choice for image enhancement, be sure to discuss your requirements beforehand with your photographer. Although there are some amazing tools and techniques available, none of these work without the right photograph to start with.
Finally, some points to consider when speaking to your photographer:
Your photographer may have existing examples to show you, and should advise you of what could work for you.
An additional fee is usually charged for image enhancements: check this out with your photographer.
Be creative, and look for inspiration: don’t be afraid to cut-out a shot from a magazine and show your photographer… Remember – it’s your big day and you’re in charge!
Consider the presentation of your enhanced photo: choose a frame and mount that compliments your photo. I find a “minimalist” approach in framing and mounting works best for modern shots, leaving the more ornate presentation for a more timeless look.