Even if you aren't a professional photographer, you might still want to make your everyday snapshots look professional. While the quality of the pictures you take depends somewhat on the type of camera you use and what your camera settings are, there are still techniques available in programs like Photoshop that will improve the final product.
Open the image you want to edit in a version of Photoshop editing program. Use the "Unsharp Mask," typically found under the "Enhance" tab, to make small modifications to the sharpness of the image. Something under an "Amount" of 50 percent, a "Radius" of less than one pixel and around one "Threshold" level is ideal.
Select the "Level" tab, followed by "New Adjustment Layer" and "Levels." Click the Auto button, since this is the best way to adjust the levels of the images quickly and easily.
Adjust the contrast of the image. Click on the "Enhance" tab, select "Adjust Lighting" followed by "Brightness/Contrast." Bump the contrast lever a bit to the right, and watch how it adjusts your image. The change needs to be subtle but effective in order to keep it from looking overdone.
Increase the saturation of the image by selecting the "Enhance" tab, then "Adjust Color" and click on "Hue/Saturation." Moderately boost the saturation, around +5.
Tips & Warnings
- You can easily adapt these techniques to other photo-editing programs if you know where these particular settings are within the program.
- PhotoshopLab: Make Your Amateur Photos More Professional
- Michelle Cramer; owner/photographer Eternal Image Photography; Springfield, MO
- Photo Credit photo camera image by A74.FR Ben Fontaine from Fotolia.com