As I said in a previous post, one of the three most important essentials to a good or great photo is IMPACT. So what do you do if you have a photo that looks pretty good but you feel it needs a little more juice. Based on my competition experience, I find that the judges know too that a certain photo needs a little more umph to get it in the merit classification. Often, the piece of advise is to add a border with the possibility of a stroke or key-line to hold the focus on the subject. These two items can really change how a photo looks. I know the purists will not like this but I think for the beginner photographer this is one easy approach without knowing a lot about Photoshop etc.
Ready for Take-Off
This shot was taken in Cape May, New Jersey. It was one of those anticipate and be patient shots. This Red Wing Black Bird never stayed still and it was windy in the marsh. When I looked at the photo in the computer I liked the action of the wings. It was perfect. I always wanted to get something like this but the situation never presented itself as it did on this day. As I looked at this image, I asked myself how can make this image even more impactful. When I do use Photoshop it would be for borders and key lines. Click here for description of a key-line.
Ready for Take-off , with border and key-line
This photo now has a black border and a little line that goes around the photo about an eighth of an inch from the edge of the photo. The photo won Best of Show and Best in Class in two different competitions in 2015. The only major change was adding the border and key line.
Here is another example using the border and key line options:
Power Wings with no border or key line- pretty nice photo as is
Power Wings with the border and key line:
This photo also won Best of Show and Best of Class in two different competitions as well as garnering a merit in International Competition in 2015. I believe the border and key-line took it over the top.