If you read my blog, you know that I love making lists. I have tried to keep them at a minimum but lists save my life some days. This one is for other photographers. Over the last few years there are a few tips and tools I have learned that are super easy and save me time. Time = Money in this business and if it doesn't equate to money, it definitely is something I like to save to put my energy elsewhere.
THE TOP 6 TIPS THAT HAVE MADE MY LIFE A A PHOTOGRAPHER EASIER
1. Shooting in RAW - I have been doing this for as long as I remember. Most professional cameras have the option to shoot RAW and from what I have heard, some iPhones are coming out with the option. RAW files are a bit larger in size but being able to have control over your images is worth the used up space/.
Here is a link to how to shoot in RAW mode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Nomej06mqE
2. CreativeLive.com - Creative Live was created by an amazing team of photographers in Seattle. They offer free classes that live stream online. The classes range from photography, business, music production, marketing and soooo much more. You can watch for free when the classes are airing and purchase the classes to watch anytime you want. I have been fortunate enough to attend quite a few live as well. Over the last 15 or so years I have taken about every type of photography class you can take and have learned more through CreativeLive than I have anywhere. Most of the classes really focus on the business side of photography which is where most people need help.
Click this link to check it out: https://www.creativelive.com/
3. Back Button Focusing (BBF) - Most cameras have a button on the back that lets you focus and keep it there instead of using the shutter button which resets everytime. I recently learned this after years of meaning to try it. The button on mine is called "AF-ON" and setting it up took all of 30 seconds. It was so simple and has made such a difference, I am kind of kicking myself for not doing it sooner.
The easiest way to figure it out is go to YouTube, type in your camera model and BBF. Here is the video I used to learn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PN9R0D3pF0
4. Frequency Separation - If you know my style, you know I love skin. I cringe when I see a beautiful image and the skin is totally blurred out. Skin has texture and it should show up in portraits. That being said, sometimes skin needs help. This is where frequency separation comes in. It makes two layers: the skin texture and the skin coloring so you can edit them on separate layers. I was so overwhelmed by the idea of trying it that it took awhile to finally go for it. Now Frequency Separation is an action on my computer and takes seconds to touch up someone's face or something pesky like cellulite on legs.
Here is a link that shows you how to use Frequency Separation and how to set up and action on your computer for it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldhG9fmgC7o
5. Sync All in RAW Editing - When you are processing your RAW files in Photoshop, there is an option to sync the settings of the files that you select. I am pretty sure Lightroom has this option but I use Photoshop. See the image below for how to sync your image settings. This seems like something simple but it has saved me so much time, I can't even imagine life without it. Shout out to Julia Kelleher for teaching me this at one of her CreativeLive classes. If I didn't learn anything else (which I did) this would have been worth it.
6. Custom Watermark Brush - Creating a watermark in Photoshop that you can stamp onto any image is super simple and saves time and multiple steps. I have one set up for each version of my logo that I use.
Here is a link to create your own watermark to use in photoshop from the ladies over at I Heart Faces: http://www.iheartfaces.com/2013/11/how-to-make-a-watermark-brush-in-photoshop/
It is easy to get overwhelmed with all of the tools and actions out there. I only use the ones that truly save me time. I hope that these help you as much as they have helped me. Figure them out and go take a nap or something with all of the time you just saved.
Meet Your Photographer
Certified Professional Photographer