So, you’ve decided to outsource your photo edits? Here are 4 tips to help make your experience successful!
- Know your style.
You need to have it nailed because if you’re going to be outsourcing your work, you should be able to explain your artistic approach and the details of how you achieve it with your editor. It is the editor’s job to match your artistic style, not to create it for you. Editing is a huge contributor to the artistic side of your brand, so make sure you have a consistent well thought out approach.
As the photographer, you have a unique opportunity to see the actual colors during the photo session. This gives you an advantage that you want to pass along to your editor. Edit Source recommends that the photographer edits 5-10% of the photos prior to sending the catalog to the editor. These photos should represent a variety of conditions that are spread out throughout the session. Typically, a wedding photographer will edit their blog images in this way, and then send them with then entire set to the editor for completion.
- Be consistent with your SOOC.
Your preset is designed to apply edits to your baseline image to get it in the right ballpark of your artistic style. Each image is then further refined until color correction to your artistic approach has been achieved. If your SOOC is inconsistent, then the baseline images will be inconsistent, the preset refined images will be inconsistent, and the editing workload will increase on the backend. You don’t have to be perfect in camera, obviously, but having consistent SOOC goes a long way for the overall photographer-editor workflow. Definitely remember to time-sync with your second shooter!
- Evaluate your time.
Every photographer’s workload and family life is different, so there is no right/wrong answer to when the right time to start outsourcing is. It is difficult taking that leap into paying someone else to do something that you have already trained yourself to do. You want to feel good about that investment, and not continuously second guess your decision to outsource. The best gauge of that is your time. When editing is taking time away from your family or consuming your work hours so you have no time left to market, it’s time to consider outsourcing. Considering your session/wedding prices, hiring an editor can often be covered by a relatively small price increase.
Outsourcing shouldn’t be a big scary word that you avoid, and it shouldn’t be something you take lightly either. At the end of the day you should feel good about your choice, own it, and use outsourcing to start doing all those other things you could be doing with your time and business.