Knowledge of photo editing is super important for newborn photographers
March 8, 2024

Editing Before & After — Skin Tones & Warmth in an In-Home Newborn Session

Before and After Edit

It may seem surprising, but much of the labor that goes into the work of being a portrait photographer is the editing. Taking the photo is only the beginning. For each hour of taking photos during a typical client session, there is probably 7-10 hours of editing to achieve my aesthetic. Editing is time consuming work! Luckily I enjoy editing as much as I enjoy taking photos, and I consider them to be equally important to the end result. I love the transformative power of Photoshop!

As you can see from the “before” version of the photo above, an unedited photo, straight out of the camera, looks very unfinished. The colors are dull and dark. It’s not something I’d ever deliver to a client! Slide to the “after” version, and you can see the importance of the edit in making this a beautiful photo.

For newborn sessions in particular, knowledge of skin and beauty retouching is essential. Newborns often present with baby acne, cradle cap, and red blotchy skin. Before all of my newborn sessions, I send my clients a pre-session questionnaire where I ask clients if they want me to retouch their newborn’s skin. Almost every client says yes!

Skin retouching is also important for my adult subjects. Parents of a newborn are often sleep deprived, and with a natural looking beauty edit I can minimize the look of dark under-eye circles and uneven skin. My beauty edits are designed to simply make my clients look like the best version of themselves. My goal is always a natural edit that is essentially imperceptible. A little goes a long way!

For the photo above, the essential edits were to lift exposure, adjust white balance, straighten the composition, and add some warmth to the skin. After that, I completed the look with some minor skin retouching.

You can check out some more photos from this session below!




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