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Working With Images
Photos, Negatives, & Slides

Editing Your Images to Improve Image Quality

     Many people think of "photo editing" as being difficult, but with today's technology, this process is greatly simplified. There are many tools out there that can help us to easily improve the quality of our scanned photos and they don't take that much of our time.

     To give you an idea about problems with color tone, lighting, or restorative needs, click on the button below to view some simple photo edits.

     If you are interested in spending some 1:1 instruction time in how to edit photos, I am able to connect with you through Zoom to help you with this.


     While there are many different photo editors, the following two are ones I am familiar with. I teach one class on basic editing using PhotoPea.com for those that just want to learn basic color tone editing. I also teach Affinity Photo classes for restoration work (tears, lines, flaws etc). I have used it for years after using PhotoShop for much longer.

     You will find that once you have a knowledge of the tools of one editor, this knowledge will carry over to other editors.

Working With Images

     This app is designed to simplify the user interface and still make fairly good tone corrections for most photographs.

     There are other free apps that I have tried. PhotoPad has some pretty good tools, but I found the app very slow to respond to changes. GIMP is an open-source program that has been around for a long time. However, each time I used it, it would crash after making adjustments, thereby losing all my work. Darktable is another open source project that has many qualities like Adobe Lightroom. It has some nice features, but the learning curve is steep, and there are very minimal tutorials available. Google Picasa used to be available and was a simple editor.

     As to FREE available photo editors, the choices are minimal. Many give you free trials, and then want a monthly subscription cost of $5+/month. For $10/month, you can subscribe to Adobe PhotoShop AND Lightroom that will have WAY more features, speed, and reliability.

Working With Images

Affinity Photo
Intermediate to Advanced Editing

     Affinity Photo is a more advanced level photo editor that has many tools that are associated with Photoshop. The tools respond more quickly and the size of the images you can load can be much larger. This is because it is not hampered by the restrictions of internet speed and browser limitations.

     Another advantage in more advanced editors is that you can create "adjustment layers" that can be deleted if you don't like what you see. This is called "non-destructive" editing. Another neat thing about adjustment layers is the ability to "paint" your adjustment onto small parts of the image, and not affect the whole image.

     If you are interested in learning how to use Affinity Photo, use the contact button below to set up some time to learn the program.

Great YouTube Tutorial Sites

Tips When Working With Photographs

Always Do Your Editing on a COPY of the Original

  • NEVER do the editing on an original file. Always FIRST make a copy and then do your editing on the copy. You will look back at your edits over time and think, "I know how to make this photo look better". If you no longer have your original photo, you are editing an already poor quality photo.
  • This does mean that you are keeping originals, which would also require an organized system in place in order to find them at some point in the future.
  • Here are some ideas about organizing your family photo collection. Click Here For Information

TIFF Versus JPEG? Considerations to Think About

  • If you are really into photography, most pros will have you save your files in a .tiff format. TIFF can be saved as compressed or not compressed. No compression = No image pixel loss. Uncompressed TIFF files can be quite large in size, therefore you will need a lot more storage space to hold them.
  • Over time, as you open, edit, and save a photo that is saved in a .jpeg or .jpg format, you will tend to lose data with each "save".
  • Try to do all your editing of that photo in one session, then save it, and do not change it. The quality should be fine.
  • If you need to do edits over several sessions, save the file in a TIFF format, until you have completed ALL your edits. If you are using software applications like Affinity Photo or Photoshop, you can save your sequential editing progress in a project file.
  • I would also recommend using the lowest compression setting for saving your JPEG photos, so there will be minimal pixel loss.
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Stephen A Meyers of Idaho Falls, Idaho