How to Crop Your Photo’s

I just discovered that I really am as behind on the times as I thought.  I just found www.pixlr.com.  I think I’m in love – seriously this is my new favorite program.

I was playing with some of the editing tools when my daughter wandered downstairs to show me the newest car she is saving for.  I didn’t even give her a chance to show me the picture before I started telling her how amazing this new program was.  She just looked at my kindly and let me know she had been using pixlr on her phone “forever”.

Yeah – I’m that mom now.  I’m not even close to the cutting edge.  Oh well, I don’t care, because really this is my new favorite program.

I’ve used Adobe Creative Suite, Lightroom and many of the higher end programs.  I love the versatility and fine tweaking option they offer.  However, they can be very time consuming.  I’m busy, I want quick simple edits for the vast majority of my pictures.  I’m all about KISS – Keep it simple stupid.   The vast majority of the edits I need can be done quickly and efficiently in the Pixlr express settings.

Editing a picture is an art itself.  I’ve seen a lot of mediocre pictures turned into something magical with a little bit of editing.  I know this because most of my pictures are kind of boring and need a bit of cropping and adjusting.  Over the next couple of weeks I’ll touch on various aspects of photo-editing, but for now, let’s start with something simple.

Cropping!

Why cropping?   Because it is the easiest method of editing and often has the biggest bang for your buck.

I took this picture at our family ranch a few years ago.  The basic shot is way too distracting with all the extra’s that catch your eye.  By cropping in and only focusing on the spider it changes the whole tone of the picture.  Notice as well that I offset the spider a little bit.  This helps give a feeling of dimension and travel to the image.

Weird Looking Spider

This is my husband ice climbing.  The shot is very basic, but with all the white from the snow it really helps to crop in and clean up the image.

Ice Climbing

This picture was taken with my basic point and shoot camera, so by necessity the subject was fairly far away.  Personally I like the middle crop best, since having the person crossing the bridge in the background gives it extra depth.  Cropping is definitely a matter of personal preference.

Flagstaff Extreme Collage

Your subject is always the most important part of the photo.  Crop as close as you can without losing quality.  Get rid of the extra’s around the picture that drastic your eye.  When in doubt crop it out.  One word of warning.  Before you go crop happy, make sure you have an original image.  I’ve cropped images for a 4×6 frame and then realized I wanted to put it in an 8×10 frame.  Protect your original images at all costs!

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