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Cropping and Editing Snapshots

Occasionally I find some good shots hiding in everyday type snapshots that I have taken just for the fun of it. Most of the time I discover them by playing with the photographs in an image editor, just experimenting until I find something that really jumps off the page for me.

Original Uncropped Snapshot

This is an original (sized for displaying on the web) snapshot that I really liked, but there was so much going on in the picture that it distracted the look I was going for. I wanted people to see the look of peace that I was seeing on Haley’s face, while she waited on these steps for me to catch up to her.

Cropped Snapshot

By cropping and editing snapshots, we can change the focus of what our eye is naturally drawn to within the shot. As you see above, I have removed a lot of the distractions, and brought the focus in on her, but it still wasn’t quite right for me. The shot was still missing something.

Natural Crop

The key was cropping the image down to the expression on her face. This natural photograph above, happens to be my personal favorite.

Soft Warm Photograph with Glamour Effects

Some folks prefer a warmer and softer look (glamour effect) for these types of pictures, as seen in the example above. I accomplished this just by using a few effects within Corel’s Paint Shop Pro Photo X2.

Traditional Black and White

I like the more tradional classic approach of a basic black and white photograph, as long as it doesn’t lose the vivid personality in the eyes.

Dramatic Photo Effects

If you are going for a dramatic look you can add some clarifying effects and play around a bit with the shadows within the shot.

In the end it all comes down to experimenting until you find the effect that portrays the look you were going for.

Which effect do you like best for this snapshot?

J. Cricket Walker

Small Business Marketing Consultant and Scenic Photographer
Copyright © 2008 J. Cricket Walker of Online Photography Magazine All Rights Reserved


  1. Pat Geary
    Pat Geary02-17-2008

    I love the traditional classic black and white although the color on shows the sparkle in her eyes. Beautiful young woman. Proud mamma.

  2. Amy Sue
    Amy Sue02-17-2008

    Cricket,

    What effects in PSPx2 did you use to get the glamour effect? My fave is the natural look, but I’d like to play around with the glamour effect too. Haley is so photogenic, she’s the perfect subject!

    ~Amy Sue

  3. J. Cricket Walker
    J. Cricket Walker02-17-2008

    @ Pat – I am a fan of black and white pictures so I am still experimenting with ways to keep that sparkle without color.

    @ Amy Sue – Using the top menu, look under effects until you see photo effects, and then film and filters.

    (effects > photo effects > film and filters)

    The one you are referring uses warming and glamour to soften it.

  4. Joyce
    Joyce02-19-2008

    Haley is very beautiful, like her momma! All are gorgeous but my favorites are the natural and dramatic.

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