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15 Common Photo Editing Mistakes to Avoid

15 Common Photo Editing Mistakes to Avoid

Editing photos can be fun. When you are working to create articles for newsworthy publications you want to assure your photos are top grade. There are several common editing mistakes you can make that will make your photos look surreal and your work unprofessional. If you want classic photos that jump off the page or screen, here are 15 rules you need to follow to avoid common photo editing mistakes.

15. Less is more

The old rule of thumb still stands and is a good base to use when photo editing. Too many edits will make your photo unnatural, blur lines and create color contrasts that dull the photo. You don’t want to fall victim to over-editing. The absolute best photos start with a good photo, when your camera is set right and the lighting is perfect. We know this can be a hassle, especially when we are new to taking photos and want to really exercise our editing talents.

less-is-more

    14. Best skin smoothing techniques

    When you want to smooth skin features, take it slow and work next to the original image so you can easily identify when you have over-edited and the skin begins to look plastic. The plastic Barbie doll look, while at one very brief moment in time was fashionable, lost ranking long ago and is a very common mistake that new photo editors make when trying to get the appearance of perfectly smooth skin.

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      13. Over-cropping can be tragic

      If you are working for a client and want to set up the picture to be displayed perfectly, make sure you know exactly what photo application will be used. The best picture is the full picture; print it out and see what you have got before you cut and edit. When working for a client make sure that you know how they will use the photo to make sure you get the perfect crop.

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      over crop

        12. Understand layers and actions

        Another huge mistake made when editing is not using the layer and action techniques correctly. This simply makes the photo look like a child was playing with your editor. You can get superior quality from a photo when applying professional layering techniques, but this takes a lot of practice–make sure you put in the time.

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          11. Selective coloring is over

          This is a great example of how selective coloring can just make your photo look weak and unprofessional. The contrast is blurred by the muddy back image and the color is too much, has too crisp of an outline, and simply just does not pop like it should.

          color

            10. Keep backgrounds crisp

            We all love those timeless photos where the surreal background creates the perfect fade into the main item in your photo, but this can be a very tricky effect to create in editing. It can often look very unnatural and says more about over-editing than taking good quality photos. If you want a fade in, it is best to set the camera and get the quality you want when you take the shot.

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            background

              9. Muddy colors don’t make good black and whites

              Crisp black and whites will always be a favorite but if you have a photo with muddy colors and want to make it a black and white to enhance the detail, you are out of luck. No amount of editing can create the crisp lines you will be looking for. Transferring muddy colors to black and white just creates a muddy gray photo.

              muddy color

                8. Know your curves

                When you go into adjusting colors and shadows, you need to understand the curves and how to layer and create the contrast within the photo without creating a collage of overlapped shadows and blurred colors. Curves take a lot of practice. Most editors, when new to photo editing programs, will either avoid or overuse the fascinating feature. Remember: practice makes perfect.

                curves-color@2x

                  7. Keep monochrome features light

                  When getting the perfect monochrome feature, less is often better and you want to scale it down as little as possible. Using deep sepia tones are often unnatural and will create a photo that is muddy and overdone.

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                  monochrome

                    6. Sparkling eyes can be too much

                    Getting the perfect sparkle in the eyes can be tricky. The less you do, the more natural the effect. You do not want the figure in your image to look like a creature from another planet with overdone eye features. Keep it simple.

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                      5. Bright white teeth that jump off the page

                      Having a bright smile with pearly white teeth can be engaging, but if you over-whiten the teeth it is very easy to spot and makes the photo look fake. You do not want the focal point of your image to be a huge set of blaring white choppers. Once again, less is more.

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                        4. Extractions can be the death of your photo

                        Unless you prepared your original photo using a green screen and other props, it is almost impossible to extract an image and make it fit the way it should, even for seasoned professionals. It is best to try and create the photo you want the first time around.

                        overcrop

                          3. Go easy on textures

                          If you are a big fan of the gaming effects and lots of textures, then of course you can play all day with the neat features and new textures you will find in editing programs. However, for a realistic photo effect, textures can be too much.

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                          texture

                            2. Incredible HDR effects

                            Images with HDR effects can be mesmerizing. When done properly, it can take an average photo to an artistic level. This is a really neat tool, but takes a lot of practice to use. You need to set up the camera right when taking the photos to make sure they transfer to the HDR effect you want to create.

                            hrd

                              1. Know your editing program, inside and out

                              New users and veteran editors to often go gaga over new apps and features, and try too hard to incorporate them into photos too soon before they get the full aspect of the feature. When using any editing program, make sure you understand the feature you want to explore.

                              editing program

                                The basics of any editing program requires practice to manage. If you want to create the perfect edits and make your photos pop with a professional zeal, you need to do your homework. The most common mistakes are made because the user simply does not understand the program and either tries to over use them or does not know how to fix the simplest issues and does not use the helpful features available. To avoid mistakes and common errors, read the information and guides provided, watch the how to videos and practice, practice practice. Check some reliable free video editing program list here.

                                Featured photo credit: Photo Manipulation/AnNamir™ c[_] via flickr.com

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                                Last Updated on July 8, 2020

                                10 Smart Productivity Software to Boost Work Performance

                                10 Smart Productivity Software to Boost Work Performance

                                Productivity is the ability to perform tasks efficiently and in a timely manner. In today’s busy and competitive business world, productivity is paramount for any business, organization or corporation.

                                Productivity is more than just performing tasks successfully. It is about investing and allocating resources, so the company or business can perform to meet its core goals.

                                As part of 2019, it is important to commit to new goals. When shopping around for new productivity software keep in mind the following things: cost, reliability, cross-platform compatibility, on the go, technical support, etc.

                                In the subsequent sections, we will examine the most recommended productivity software in the marketplace. In addition, we will look at what makes them tick and what separates them from the rest of the pack.

                                Projects and Tasks Management

                                1. Monday dot com

                                  Monday dot com was founded to create a team management solution so people connect to workplace processes across any industry. The productivity tool is used in more than 140 countries.

                                  The user interface is intuitive and impressive. It makes collaboration productive and fun because of its simplicity.

                                  The tool is deemed to have one of the best user experiences across the mobile and online project and task management platform.

                                  The product includes usability, customization, admin control, group management and control, private or public control, in-group messaging and more.

                                  Check out the software here!

                                  2. Asana

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                                    The mantra behind Asana’s product is to enable teams from across different organizations to work together effortlessly.

                                    The software comes with lots of customizations. When you create a project as a user, you can choose between a traditional task view and the kanban-style board view. The dashboard allows you to see the progress on a project, and it includes an excellent advanced set of search tools.

                                    Also, Asana’s Android and iOS apps do retain the web interface’s clean look and feel.

                                    Check out the software here!

                                    3. Trello

                                      Trello was founded in the summer of 2010 and two years later the platform added 500,000 members. Anyone within sales, marketing, HR and operations can collaborate successfully with this product.

                                      Moreover, the tool has over 100 plus integrations with Google Drive, Slack, Jira and others. The product works flawlessly across various platforms.

                                      Some of the well-known features includes is speed, easy-to-use, and set up. The interface includes due dates, assignments, file storage, checklists and more.

                                      Check out the software here!

                                      4. Jira

                                        The Jira software is flexible and heralded as the next-generation project.

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                                        The software allows teams to design and adapt the software to an organization’s needs. This includes having visibility into long term goals, project roadmaps, status of work, real-time release information and more. In addition, the interface is customizable.

                                        The Atlassian Cloud does not support multiple separate domains, subdomains or domain aliases in Google Apps.

                                        Check out the software here!

                                        5. Evernote Business

                                          Evernote was founded in 2008 and reached 11 million users by 2011. The company was founded on the premise that their product should address the ever-increasing volume and speed of information.

                                          The product helps bring together groups of teams because of versatility and functionality. It creates documents, collaboration on projects, store information all a single location.

                                          Moreover, you can find information quickly and includes effective search capabilities and integrations with existing tools you may already use.

                                          Check out the software here!

                                          Communication

                                          6. Slack

                                            Slack was founded in 2013 and the tool is heralded as a collaboration hub. Slack is where productivity happens. When you start a new project, hire new staff, deploy a code, review a sales contract, finalize on a budget, Slack covers all of these. Some of the major highlights include highly customizable notifications and seamless integrations with other collaboration and office tools. The free version of the software comes loaded with features, but does not archive old message. So, you have to review what are the best options for your organization or business.

                                            Check out the software here!

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                                            7. Spike

                                              Newcomer Spike makes emails more conversational by helping teams maintain productivity, communication, and collaboration. All of these are achieved from within their inbox.

                                              Spike works on top of any existing email (O365, G suite, and IMAP) turning it into a real-time messenger and making your communication much more functional and efficient.

                                              Spike’s features include built-in groups and channels, voice and video calls, email encryption, instant access to all your files, and much more.

                                              Check out the software here!

                                              Creation

                                              8. Office 365

                                                Microsoft’s Office 365 could not be excluded from the conversation and especially as it pertains to productivity software.

                                                Of course we are all familiar with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. But there is more capabilities that come with it.

                                                You have business-class email, online storage space, and teamwork solutions. These services can be accessed from just about anywhere.

                                                Within this suite is Microsoft Sway, which is a presentation software and a step above PowerPoint.

                                                Check out the software here!

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                                                9. Grammarly

                                                  Grammarly helps to cut down time on editing. Professionals in several industries like law, healthcare, academia, marketing, engineering and journalism use it to provide instant feedback on the accuracy of writing in English.

                                                  Once you install the extension from Google Chrome, you can get corrections when you are drafting an email, using social media and other apps.

                                                  Grammarly is AI powered and it’s a wonderful tool to have to check spelling and grammar before a presentation.

                                                  Check out the software here!

                                                  Team Analytics

                                                  10. ActivTrak

                                                    ActivTrak is a business intelligence tool that allows you to access team behavior analytics. In other words, it is data-driven.

                                                    The pros include two-factor authentication with active directory integration. You can also automate your alerts and it has an intuitive interface with easy-to-use admin controls.

                                                    Furthermore, it comes with Google sign-in, iOS app, productivity track, and more. The bottomline is the product offers employee productivity metrics along with team behavior analytics.

                                                    Check out the software here!

                                                    The Bottom Line

                                                    Depending on the size, budget, resources, and immediate needs of your company, not all productivity software will exactly solve your problem. You will have to contact any of the providers above and probe extensively to find the right product that is made for your business.

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                                                    Featured photo credit: Domenico Loia via unsplash.com

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