how to figure out your editing style (and get goooood at it!)

August 15, 2020

the one thing i am asked the most as a photographer from my colleagues is how to figure out your photo editing style. this process is definitely a personal one that will develop over time and experience. however, i do have a few pointers that could help you along this process.

not sure where to start? keep reading to get all my tips on learning your own editing style.

1. make sure you learn your camera and shoot correctly

for me, the most difficult process was learning about my camera and how to set up my shots correctly. i assumed i could fix anything and everything in Lightroom! i often battled with noisy images too dark or composed oddly. in other words, they were unfixable. *sigh*

it undeniably takes time to get comfortable and become skilled with a camera. but if you operate from the beginning with the understanding that your final image is created mostly with your camera, it will go a long way.

make sure to play with your shooting style and really get to know your camera settings so the more stressful a situation becomes, you still know how to shoot for the final images you want! 

editing does not exist to create your image, but to help the image you create with your camera to become even better! 

2. deliver a consistent look in your galleries

when it comes to editing, only send off galleries to clients that are consistent. even if you are still trying to decide exactly how warm you prefer a photo, make a whole session look consistent so your client gets a clean product (even if you are editing images yourself a bit differently behind the scenes).

it is overwhelming and confusing as a client to receive a gallery that is not consistent. perhaps half the images are bright and saturated and another half that is dark and moody. it’s perfectly fine to try styles at home! but send off that final gallery as solid as possible, even if you don’t decide to stick to that style long-term.

3. learn about and play around with all the different editing options

it’s okay to not know exactly how to get the images you want or even know how you want the images to look. you will eventually have to take the time to develop this understanding! TIME is the most important part of learning your editing style. it takes time to figure it out and lots of practice with the camera and editing software to really decide what you even like.

spend late nights dragging every slider to see what they do. take the time to understand your software and what every little button does to your images.  take it one step further and even try each button all the way to 100% to see the look.

give yourself grace as you learn all the ins and outs of filters, layering, and the tons of features your software has to offer.

remember…finding your photo editing style is a long-term learning process that i hope you come to enjoy. making beautiful images for clients is what it’s all about!


want to get into the nitty gritty and have me walk alongside you as you learn all things editing? click here and head over and read more about my mentor program!

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