Photo Editing Tips: How To Add Dramatic Effects in Wedding Photos

In every wedding preparation, capturing the best wedding photos are important as they’ll set the tone of what’s about to happen on the much-awaited wedding day. In amazing ways, wedding photos are able to take people into an emotional journey of storytelling.

To truly capture these moments, hiring a professional wedding photographer will definitely make for more remarkable memories. At the same time, the photo editing process following the photoshoot makes a huge difference in the final output. It’s fairly crucial for the editors to utilize the best editing software.

If you’ll be with the editor during the editing process, you can suggest a great editing software if you read this review of Luminar and recommend some dramatic effects to add to your wedding photos, such as these:

  1. Optimize Contrast

Contrast is one of the most important elements of photography. It differentiates various tones and colors from one another and it can highly influence the overall composition that you’re trying to depict. To create a dramatic effect on your photos, find the right contrast optimization – they’re often successful in a low contrast context.

To make the contrast optimization a lot easier and effective, make sure that you arrange these elements even before the photoshoots. As much as possible, limit the composition to fewer colors to achieve a stronger contrast effect.

Moreover, if your composition has similar colors, you can include an element with a distinct shade or tint, allowing it to stand out.

  1. Find The Right Exposure

Along with contrast, exposure is the heart of your composition, which decides what ‘look’ you’re going for. In basic photo editing, adjusting the exposure is minimally sliding the exposure button from the highest to lowest exposure. Doing so will allow your image to look exaggerated.

To fix this issue, you need to find the right exposure by adjusting more of its options. Here are some tips that you can try yourself:

  • Adjust the overall exposure to your desired level.
  • Adjust the lightest areas through experimenting with the highlights and whites slider.
  • Adjust the darkest areas through playing with the shadows and blacks.
  • Proceed with the contrast slider.

In this way, you’re creating the right exposure by making the highlights brighter and the shadows darker, without making it too much for the eyes. Another exposure technique that you can employ is the double exposure, such as in this wedding photo.

  1. Make Colors Pop

Marriage and weddings are definitely the best experiences in life, so the wedding photos would have to reflect happiness through color vibrancy. Instead of dull, bland images, making the colors pop would guarantee how dramatically happy the moments are.

Digital camera lenses are accustomed to capturing light with red, blue, and green sensors, then they mix it with the right proportions to create a wide spectrum of colors. However, if the lenses were too focused on the red, blue, and green, this can negatively impact the colors and make them confusing.

With the right editing software, you can fix the colors in your composition. Not only can you add a little bit of “pop,” but also correct the colors.

  1. Utilize Customized Presets

While using presets are always associated with quick editing, they’re not always the case. Your wedding photos are worth the time, and using customized presets aren’t good for speed only, but they allow you for easier customization.

Usually, editing software comes with customized presets that you can still adjust according to your preference. Playing with a preset, or even creating your own, can help you achieve a unique look that highlights more of your character and style. It can be more meaningful for couples to work with the editor in terms of presets, so they could make the photos more personal to them.

  1. Use The Crop Tool Creatively

While the crop tool is merely a tool to crop anything unpleasant for your photo, it can actually affect the overall composition of wedding photos. They’re more than just cropping, so use them creatively.

For instance, the crop tool can be utilized for straightening crooked lines and adjusting the aspect ratio, an element that helps convey your ideas and emotions. In fact, the aspect ratio is crucial in film making since it makes a certain scene more dramatic, depending on the aspect ratio. You can absolutely do the same with wedding photos.

  1. Take The Healing Brush For Imperfections

Finish your editing by examining minor imperfections and have them corrected and retouched using a healing brush tool. These are handy when fixing minor issues with the couples’ and guests’ skin, outfit, and even the slightest errors in the background.

While you can manipulate the imperfections using the healing brush tool, make sure that the images still look natural, as it’ll subsequently provide the dramatic, genuine effect of capturing the moment.

Key Takeaways

While good wedding photography is essential in capturing a couple’s best wedding moments, the editing process will enhance the final output printed on paper. With the help of these photo editing tips, editors can differentiate a real love story from an inauthentic one.

Why are wedding photos important and why do people invest in a wedding photoshoot?

The reason why is because weddings are a great place to showcase one’s photography skills and help cement the wonderful memories of the happy couple.

Additionally, these photos are a mark of a new milestone in someone’s life who’s making a commitment to walk alongside another person in a new chapter of life. The photos serve as a testimony of all the good and happy things that went on that day. Photos will also serve as a reminder to the people who attended the ceremony of the love that was shared that day.

In this article, we’ll divide how to get the most beautiful wedding photos in three main sections: before, during, and after the wedding.

The whole event is a big thing that you should really prepare for. Thus, these tips are here to guide you through the various parts of shooting a wedding.

Tips To Know Before The Wedding:

  1. Sign A Contract

Before anything else, it’s best to have a contract signed by both parties. This protects you from clients who’ll cancel on you and break standing agreements.

A legal contract in writing also helps ensure that you’ll get paid in time.

  1. Know Your Client

If you’ve done a lot of wedding photoshoots in the past, you know that it’s important to build a good relationship with your client. Ask them about their personal stories, such as how they met, where they spend quality time together, where they go on dates, and so on. It’s through these stories that you get to know who they really are.

Having an idea of who you’re working with will help you capture them in their most natural state of being. Capturing their candid smiles, their goofy dances, and their excited eyes are the best photos that you can give them.

  1. Check Out The Location Beforehand

Getting a feel of the place before your shoot will help you plan out your shots. During this time, you can also get a feel of the natural light that you can take advantage of, the size of the place, the elements in the location, and the natural curves and edges of the area.

Usually, professionals already know how to get around an area without even have to scout it, but if you’re just starting out, having an idea of a place beforehand and how you’ll move around is very helpful. Thus, if you’re a beginner in taking wedding photos, scouting the area will greatly aid you.

  1. Discuss With The Couple What They Expect

As you’re scouting the place or meeting with the lovely couple, you can use this time to talk with them about the specific shots that they would like to have during the wedding. Ask them for their inputs and inspirations that they would like to follow. Show them styles and poses that you think would go well with the place.

Collaboration is important during this time. What they want and what will work well in a specific place will help you create the most beautiful photos that they’ll surely treasure.

Happy wedding photography of bride and groom at wedding ceremony. Wedding tradition sprinkled with rice and grain

Tips To Know During The Wedding:

  1. Have A Shot List Ready

It’s never a good idea to go to battle unprepared. That being said, think ahead of time the shots that you need to do and compile a checklist of the location where you’ll shot, as well as the corresponding shots that you’ll do there. Upon completion, you can simply check the item off the list. If needed, bring inspiration shots to help the couple project the pose that they want.

It’s also important to have a list of the important people that absolutely needs to be part of the wedding photos, like certain family members. Forgetting to include some might result in tension and problems in the future. Thus, list all the group shots that you need so that you’ll not forget anyone.

  1. Take Advantage of Natural Light

It’s easier to shoot with natural light because it gives your camera greater flexibility and will not have to compensate so much with fluorescent lights or even dim lighting.

Using flash photography is okay, but if you have the option of having the sunlight outside, go for natural light.

  1. Shoot The Small Details

Shoot the rings, the way the groom tears up when he first sees his bride, the way the father tears up when he gives her daughter away, the menu, the flower arrangements, and so on. This is a good way to help the couple memorialize the small details that day.

This might not sound like a big thing now, but a few years down the road, they’ll be thankful for how you’ve captured these small moments.

Tips To Know After The Wedding:

  1. Post-edit Your Photos  

Good post-edit skills are a must for every wedding photographer. As a tip, use a photo editor to brighten your photos and adjust their saturation and vibrance

Sometimes, because of the limitations of our devices, we’re not able to do justice to beautiful scenery and the couple posing in it. With a few clicks from any photo editor that you may have, you can bring simple dull photography to life by bringing out the colors.

Post-editing also cleans out unwanted elements in a photo that may have made its way in there. Examples of these might be people who photobomb a really good photo of the couple. You can simply edit it out with various photo editing software available out there.


Keep in mind these tips before the wedding, during the wedding, and after the wedding.

Know your client and listen to their story, then scout the location beforehand to give you a general idea of what to expect, and always sign a contract.

During the wedding, remember to have a shot list ready, shoot with natural light as much as you can, and be on the lookout for the small details.

After the wedding, post-edit is a very important part of creating beautiful photos that’ll last a lifetime.

Image sources:

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.