Oh that crazy photographer speak and what it all really means | Maine Wedding Photographer

There's a lot of crazy language thrown around by photographers and sometimes even we get confused! A big topic on one of the wedding forums I belong to there's a big discussion about what certain terms are and how flip flopping them may be confusing our clients. I have to admit, I'm guilty of flopping "edited" for "retouched" all the time. So here's a virtual slap on the wrist for me and a bit o' knowledge for everyone else. Original Images: RAW files or sometimes JPEGs Photographically speaking: These are the images straight from the memory card. From Wikipedia - Raw files are so named because they are not yet processed and therefore are not ready to be printed. Most photographers I know shoot in RAW format. This is a specialized file that requires specific programs to open such as Lightroom or Photoshop. If you were to try to open one of these files on your computer, chances are it wouldn't work.

Edit: To eliminate; delete: edited the best scene out. Photographically speaking: This means that after we upload all of our images to our computers we look at them in either Lightroom, Photoshop or another program and get rid of the ones that don't fit our style, blurry (yes, we take blurry photos sometimes too), or other photos that don't go with our image. I'm one to keep in photos of the bride making a goofy face, because maybe that's just who she is, but others will edit that one out because they have a different style or view of how the final product should look.

Retouch: Photography. to alter (a negative or positive) after development by adding or removing lines, lightening areas, etc., with a pencil, brush, or knife. Photographically speaking: Blemish removal, power lines removed, exit signs taken out, skin smoothing, head swaps so everyone is looking in the right direction.

Shoot & Burn: Shoot the wedding, burn to a disc. Photographically speaking: No editing, no retouching. Basically this photographer can shoot the wedding and can basically have all your images on a disc to you the very next day. Most photographers I know don't deliver images like this because they're not what they'd have in their portfolio or what they typically show to clients. Personally, I work long and hard on the images I present to the public and show my potential brides - and then that's what I deliver to them.

There are some big box wedding websites out there that list ways for couples to cut corners and save on their budget. And who can blame couples? Weddings are expensive! And I know every vendor out there will tell you that what they offer shouldn't be what you trim your budget on. Figure out what's drawn you to a particular photographer  - Is it their stunning black and whites? The flawless portraits? Those things don't come from original or unedited images. Back in the days of film photographers would toil for hours in darkrooms to perfect their negatives. While times & methods have changed the idea is still there. Photoshop/Lightroom is the new darkroom and we still toil for hours in those programs to produce the final products that you receive.

Each couple needs to sit and figure out what is the most important thing they'd like to take away from their wedding. Here's hoping it's photography!

And here's my little example of an edited & retouched image - and the final product that the bride will receive in her album. (And a plea for underground power lines)