Making that unforgettable impact with your wildlife photography goes beyond simply taking that picture perfect shot. These days, a lot of the magic is happening behind the scenes, with more and more photographers, especially those who are looking to turn their photos into printed artworks, turning their attention to editing.
While there are countless tools as well as countless methods that you can use to add a memorable pop to your photos, to make them stand out and truly unique, if you want to simplify your approach to editing, then you should start with learning more about colour grading.
Nature’s colours are perfect. But your camera, and its settings, don’t always quite capture exactly what it is that your eyes are seeing. Colour grading is just one method that you can use to rectify the colours and give you a better representation of the actual colours. You can also use colour grading to add that artistic touch to your images.
One word of advice before you jump in with this technique is that editing should be carefully used and only in a way that keeps the image as natural looking as possible. If you were to go over the top with your approach, you can quickly ruin a photo by making it look unreal (and not in a good way!).
Achieving the right colour in your wildlife photo should be your main goal. And your approach can start long before you hit the editing room. To give yourself the best possible starting point for the colour of your photo, you should pay close attention to the lighting.
As you probably already know, the lighting in your photo is going to play the biggest role in how your image comes out. Most photographers will opt for the early morning light, which can be a little blue before the sun comes out, or they will take photos in the late afternoon, when the light is more golden.
It can be difficult to naturally correct your lighting after the fact, and the lighting can dramatically change the colour in the image.
First of all, what is colour grading?
In a nutshell, colour grading has to do with processing your photos in such a way that you either completely change the colour or you enhance it.
Post processing programmes like Lightroom allow you to individually alter and enhance the different colours in your image and they also give you the ability to alter the colours of your highlights and your shadows.
Through the process of colour grading, you will be creating a certain mood in your images. When it comes to wildlife photography, you will notice many go for that golden effect, to create a warm, laidback atmosphere. Often the colours in the image will also be understated, especially the greens. This is common with African safari photos where the photographer is trying to convey that dry and dusty environment. Safaris are not synonymous with vibrant greens, so getting that warm, dry look is often the goal for those trying to emulate the safari images they have seen in the past.
Ready to try your hand at African safari and wildlife photography? Then book your next safari with us and we’ll teach you the ins and outs of wildlife photography.