February 22, 2013

Friday Favorites #7: Taking & Editing Photos

Happy Friday! Today I have another Friday favorites post for you guys, it's how I take and edit my photos. I get a lot of questions about this kind of thing and I always feel bad with my answer because I really don't do anything crazy or weird to take photos. I have no crazy lighting set up that I can tell you about or anything. Hopefully this post is somehow helpful for those of you that wonder about this kind of thing though :)

Click the read more button below for more!



Alright so first things first, the camera I use is a Canon Point & Shoot, the model is ELPH 110HS. You really don't need a fancy DSLR with different lenses and whatnot to take good photos. I do own a DSLR and I find it hard to use for swatches and I usually don't like how the photos turn out. I typically use it for bottle shots and things like taking a photo of my camera below lol



I prefer to take my photos outside in natural sunlight, for me I find that it's the best way to get color accurate photos. Lightboxes and I just don't get along, maybe I'm just too technically challenged to figure out how to work the lighting but whenever I try to use the one I have it seems like all my photos turn out nothing like what I see with my eyes and glare from the lights take away from being able to actually see the polish I'm trying to show. There are lots of ladies out there who take awesome photos using a lightbox so I know it's possible to do, I'm just too lazy to figure it out. I'm really lucky that where I live has pretty great weather year round so it affords me the ability to swatch with plenty of sun whenever I want to for the most part.

For the shade photos you see on here I usually just run around my backyard taking photos in different shady spots and use the ones that turn out best...no real science to that!

To actually take my photos I stand with my back to the sun and snap away. Then I come back into the house and look at my photos so I can make sure they are color accurate and whatnot before I move onto the next swatch. Below is what my photos look like before I edit them so you can kind of see how far back I hold my camera from my hand. I don't use any special settings on my camera besides putting it on macro mode.

poor sad short thumb nail, I fought a file cabinet at work...it won.
For editing my photos I use a program called Gimp, I like it because it's free and I'm cheap :) I don't do anything to my photos besides cropping them, resizing them and adding my watermark which I have set up as a brush so it's super quick to just stamp onto the photo. I don't color correct or anything like that...I don't know how to even do that and really ain't nobody got time for that...just sayin'.  There are times when it doesn't matter what I do, my camera just doesn't pick up the color right (I'm looking at you red/orange) when that does happen I usually just let you guys know when I post my swatches...sometimes I don't post those swatches at all.
 

So yep, that's pretty much it. I really don't do anything crazy or fancy. I kind of wish I had some fantastical secrets to spill but I don't! If you have any questions let me know in the comments!

23 comments:

  1. Not to be a total creep but what is the tattoo on your wrist? :) great post! It's nice to see someone who is cheap and lazy like me haha.

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  2. Pretty much the same as how i do it! Only difference for me is i use a different (but still free) program. Only prob is that here in the uk we're a bit short of sunlight in the winter which makes it difficult. I think i'm going to do enough this summer to keep me going through the winter haha! Great post, really interesting x x x

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  3. Thanks for sharing. This definitely helped to give me an idea of how to better my photos.

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  4. Great post! Your pictures always look great. It's nice to know the process behind all the work you do.

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  5. it's so weird seeing your whole hand!!

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  6. Great post Jen! I do colour correct my images sometimes. when it was too dark or room light - just to get more accurate colours. But you're right, orange, red with yellow undertones and all coral shades are just impossible to edit/correct - no matter what you do they just look strange and almost never the same as the actual colours are.

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  7. Really love this Friday Favorites series! It's like getting a behind the scenes look at what you do lol.

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  8. So you finally got rid of your hot pink camera? :)

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  9. I usually use Photoshop but just downloaded Gimp last week! I can't figure out the cropping function...how long did it take you to learn all the tools??

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  10. lol yep, I couldn't take the reflections I'd get in photos anymore haha!

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  11. Those pictures definitely look better than I thought you could get with that type of camera. I have a DSLR and there are so many settings and things to tweak I'm sure I'm getting it wrong half the time!

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  12. fabulous post - i have gimp but can't seem to get good with it - i may have to put some more effort in! xxxx

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  13. We use the same camera! That's pretty fun. I picked it because it was a cheap option with good reviews and the girl at the store said it had the best macro setting. So cool! I've been following your blog for ages. It really gave me the confidence to start mine. Thanks, Jen!

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  14. Thanks so much for this great post! I'd never heard of Gimp but I'm definitely going to give it a try! I don't have Photoshop & the editing capabilities in iPhoto are slim, so I've been looking for something good to use.

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  15. I really enjoyed this post:) it's interesting to see what behind the scenes!:)

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  16. jude@ninjablossomnailsFebruary 23, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    thanks so much for posting this - your pic's always look so professional and its nice to know theres no expensive hidden magic :) I was using my phone camera on my baby blog as I knew it took better scenic pic's than my compact but I dug it out this morning and tried some outside shots - so much improved (my first few pic's highlighted I really needed to do my cuticles!) thanks again! :)

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  17. Wow! A fun peek into your swatching secrets...it is super impressive that you do so little to your pics, and they look so gorgeous. Natural sunlight really is the best!!

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  18. Haha your process sounds just like mine! I like it, it's simple!

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  19. Nail Polish TherapyFebruary 25, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    I use Lunapic to edit my photos and it's free and easy to use as well. We have the same technique in taking pictures except I use my camera phone and take pics under the fog light in my garage and outside when the sunlight is good. I agree that too much editing is time consuming and not necessary if you have nice healthy nails and precise application. Great post!

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  20. I love that you posted this. Some bloggers get so secretive and defensive about their techniques it's kind of silly. I don't do anything technical or fancy either. I pretty much use the nikon version of your canon on a macro setting, but I'm forced to use a light box since I don't have such nice weather. I'm always fighting with my lighting so it's an ongoing struggle, but slowly going uphill ;) Thanks for sharing!

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  21. Next time Gimp baffles me, I'm asking you!!

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  22. Ain't nobody got time for that! You are too funny.

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