Edit PERFECT Images Using Only Your Phone: The Only 3 Apps You'll Ever Need | Peggy Dean | Skillshare

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Edit PERFECT Images Using Only Your Phone: The Only 3 Apps You'll Ever Need

teacher avatar Peggy Dean, Top Teacher | The Pigeon Letters

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      What You Can Edit in Your Images


    • 3.

      The Apps


    • 4.

      Enhance Your Photos


    • 5.

      Remove Unwanted Objects


    • 6.

      Adjust Isolated Areas


    • 7.

      Whatcha got?


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About This Class

Photo editing can be a pain. Especially when there are SO many photos to edit ALL THE TIME! Whether you're an artist, hobbyist, photographer, just a human that likes taking pictures, you name it, I've got a recipe that I use that cuts editing time into a small fraction of what it used to be when I'd tweak forever trying to get ideal results. And guess what? I'm spilling my secret recipe to you in this class.

You're going to learn:

• How to enhance clarity, color, and brightness in one step
• How to remove unwanted objects and corners 
• How to adjust saturation/exposure/temperature/etc. on ISOLATED areas within a photo
• How to instantly capture the attention of the viewer of an image

This class is quick and easy, just like its process. And the more you use these techniques, the quicker your editing skills will become. Let's jump right on in!

Music: Kevin MacLeod - Life of Riley

Meet Your Teacher

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Peggy Dean

Top Teacher | The Pigeon Letters

Top Teacher

Snag your free 50-page workbook right here!

Hey hey! I'm Peggy.

I'm native to the Pacific Northwest and I love all things creative. From a young age I was dipping everything I could into the arts. I've dabbled in quite an abundance of varieties, such as ballet, fire dancing, crafting, graphic design, traditional calligraphy, hand lettering, painting with acrylics and watercolors, illustrating, creative writing, jazz, you name it. If it's something involving being artistic, I've probably cycled through it a time or two (or 700). I'm thrilled to be sharing them with you!

Visit my Instagram for daily inspiration: @thepigeonletters, and head over to my blog for more goodies curated just for youuuu.

I'm the author of the best selling... See full profile

Related Skills

Photography More Photography
Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Hi guys, this class focuses on the only three apps that you will ever need to create, perfect edits of your photos just from your phone. I'm Peggy Dean and I am an artist and content creators, so I have had to find these tricks over time and I'm super thrilled to be able to share with you what I have learned. This class is for you if you just want to have better pictures, you can be a hobbyist, you can be an artist, you can be a photographer you can be a pet owner, or a family member, any types of photos that you take, this is going to be beneficial for you. Specifically if you want to remove objects or you want to brighten just a certain isolated area in your photo, it's going to help you with your temperature control, it's going to help you in a plethora of ways so that you can really clean up any excess noise in a photograph and make it clean and easy to read and easy on the eyes. I am going to introduce what those three apps are and then we're also going to go through my exact process so that I can show you the perfect recipe to produce the exact results that you're going to want to see. This has been something that I've experimented with quite a bit. I've got it down to a science that works for me, so hopefully this will work for you. I know that there are some tips that will be super beneficial as we go along that you will be able to incorporate into your workflow on editing your photos. It's pretty straightforward guys, so let's jump right into the class so that we can start editing. 2. What You Can Edit in Your Images: I'm going to take you through some examples of what to look for when we are taking or editing our images. Now, of course, these are things that we should look for when we're taking pictures to make editing easier for us, the less we have to do, the better. But if you're like me, you just want to, get it done and then deal with everything else later. But photographing things in short time frames, these apps really come in handy. Let's start with this image. I wanted to take a flatly showcasing the colors of Daniel Smith that I used in this piece. You can see I have this really dark shadow right here. This is really hard to see in here, and then I don't love the desk part, is super gray, so I want to lighten that up. Then also you can't see what my brush is here. That's for me crucial because this is my brand, the Pigeon Letters brush, so I really want that to show up. I have been able to edit that, so where you can see in the next image is much brighter, you can see the brush, you can see what the paint is, and I've got this to be a nice white picture. If you are looking through any images on the Internet or social media, you're going to be a lot more drawn to this image versus this dark image. This was a pretty simple edit. You can see the before and after really makes a huge difference. I'm going to move into this image now. This one I wanted to showcase my brushes along with the Daniel Smith palette that I have with them. It's pretty dark, I've got this dark corner down here. That's where my desk was, and I cut that off because I was trying to play with angles. This is when I was too lazy to move some things. I have that cast shadow. Again, it's pretty dark even though it's under a window, so I do need to enhance that. To do that, you can see I brought that to life. I've got everything nice and bright. I got rid of that corner, and I got rid of this shadow. The before and after really makes a difference here too. Next, I have something super simple, but it's going to show you how you can get ride of, I have cat hair here, I've got some little spots on my desk from just creating art, and then overall, I've got some darker corners, then this grayness, and I want that to be nice, bright white. This how I was able to redo that. I got rid of that cat hair and I've got a nice bright picture. As you can see, it's going to make a huge difference on what your eye is drawn to on the before and after. That's another just simple example. The next one I go into, however, is going to be pretty lazy of me. You can see I've got my iPad peeking in here, I've got my mouse pad. I've got the corner that cuts off, my desk is right here, and then I've got the abyss of blackness down here, stuff I didn't want to move here. I've got a pretty dark shadow here because I wasn't thinking about rotating the piece so that my hand didn't cast such a dark shadow. These are all things that I had to take into account when editing. Don't worry, I'm going to walk you through my process. This will not seem so daunting. Because you know that we all have this issue. This is what that ended up looking like. I was able to get rid of all this noise, I was able to lighten this up a bit so that my focus is a lot more on the leaves, and then I left my palette in here because you can see I'm working with watercolor. Before and after, huge difference on this, and you can see. Then I have what brings us to this class, the image I'm going to use as an example is one of those chaotic ones in the sense this is a super dark shadow. I'm going to be showing you an image that's going to be a lot more difficult than your typical edit, and that's because I want to problem solve with you guys so that you can see my process, which should help you as well. I've also got this bottom corner here, and then I've got this random object here. Overall, this is pretty dark. I took this early in the morning, so the light wasn't ideal. Then my brushes, I want to enhance too. I was able to create this out of that, and we will be going over this in the class. This is my before and after, it makes a huge difference. Those are things that we will be covering in this class. There are also these objects to watch for as you are moving through your edits, and also if you can't help it before you actually snap the picture, but you know how we get. Let's move on into the next video. 3. The Apps: So there are three apps that you are going to need to download to follow along with me in this class. Tat is ColorStory, Retouch and Snapseed. These are the only three that we're going to be using and you will be able to accomplish what we are doing without spending a dollar. So, don't fret. This seems like a lot to have, to use, to edit. But once you develop a rhythm, I promise you this is such a fast process. Make sure to download those three, ColorStory, Retouch, and Snapseed in the App Store. I will meet you in the next video when we begin with ColorStory. 4. Enhance Your Photos: So the first app that I'm going to show you, a lot of you may already know about this, but I will take you through my process and exactly how I kind of figure this out. I have my photo folder and then inside, I know we'll have way too many apps. I know. I don't use many of these often, but the top three that I do use, all the time, are at the top here. So I've color story retouched and snap seed. Right now I'm going to open color story. I have a subscription to color story because I like to see what their new filters are going to be and it's a low price per year. They have a ton, ton, ton of filters and you can favorite them. So I'm going to go to my albums and just select a photo. As you can see, the top photos here I just took and they are super dark, a little too cool. These are things that I could edit individually, but nice thing about colors stories, I have found that I am able to totally take these in just like one-click and be happy with the results. So that's why I love it. The other thing I like about this app is that you are able to select more than one photo at once, and that's just by selecting the select right up there on the right corner and then you can select the ones that you want. This is kind of tricky sometimes because you know, it will apply the exact same edits to everything and that might not always be the best. If you don't have the exact same lighting situation, so these four do, but just for the sake of this video, I'm just going to show you this image because of the dark areas that I want to remove and because I want to brighten it as a whole. I'm going to click continue and now I've got this loaded and you can see I can go to filters on the bottom and it's got all of these categories and some of these are downloaded after the fact. So you can see that these I don't have, but I could get them because I have that subscription, but I think that you can get them individually to for a couple bucks, but you can add your favorites. To do that, let's say you really really like lipstick and you like how that looks. If you click this little heart, then it'll save it to your favorites. I'm going to undo that, go back to my favorite. You can also, which I should do right now because I've been wanting to do this. I keep adding to my favorites and it adds it in the beginning, but the ones that I really use, I'm going to drag, so I'm going to hold it, drag it, and then put it back in the front, because I use these the most. Then everything that I want all the time is just right there. So these are the three that I use the most often and sometimes I'll use other ones just for fun effect. But as far as like lightening things up, fixing their temperature, and maybe increasing saturation a little bit. The three filters that I use are April, sugar and Jelly Bean. I can tell you right now Jelly Bean is under the category candy minimal. But I don't right off the top of my head know exactly where April and sugar live. But you'll find what you like the most. If he did a quick Google search, I would tell you but and so I click on one of them and I see how that's going to affect it and then I click the other one, see how that's going to lag and then click the other one, see how that's going to look. Sometimes I might not be happy with that and then I'll look at my other ones and it shows a small preview on the bottom. So I can click one of those and see what it does. These are all the ones that I have found. As a quick reference. [inaudible] is January quite a bit. Then of course you can always go into other ones. Fresh is my favorite category as far as brightening things up because all of them do a pretty good job doing that and maintaining the overall color without changing it too much or changing it like when you apply an actual filter. But I kind of like the way snow is looking, but it's a little too cool. I usually stick with April or Sugar. This one looks like April's going to give me more color. Sugar is going to be just kind of a brighter. Overall then I can slide the slider to see how much I actually want that effect to take place. I'm going to go all the way for Sugar, then I can apply another filter on top of that. You can also press undo, if I don't like that, so I'm going to click "Sugar" again and you can see it brightens even more. I'm going to click "April", so I can combine these and then just turn some of it down a little bit. That brightens it nice. Or I could go with Jelly Bean, which really enhances saturation. It does brighten it, but when I wanted to enhance saturation, that's my go-to. So I'm going to pick April and go about halfway. Then from there I feel like that's pretty good. If you want to compare it to the original photo. Just hold the image down with your finger and then release and you're going to see how that works. Okay, so I'm going to say review, just save. For my next edit, I'm going to open this up and reattach, and I'm going to get rid of those ugly areas that I accidentally put into the photo that I don't want in it. 5. Remove Unwanted Objects: All right. I'm going to open the next app here and that's just Retouch. The thing that I like about Retouch the most is it makes it so easy to remove unwanted objects from your images. I'm going to go to Albums and open exactly what I just edited in Color Story. I can do object removal, which will let me either lasso or brush, and then I can erase areas that I accidentally added in that I don't want added in, before I press the button for it to do its magic. Or, what I like to do because I like to keep things nice, simple, and fast, is select this Quick Repair on the bottom left, and when that's in, I can do my Quick Brush. You can see on the bottom left corner of my image, I've got this nasty little area that comes off the desk. I'm still holding with my finger. As soon as I release, it automatically does exactly what I want it to do. That's Quick Brush. It will immediately act after you lift your finger. Whatever you select, it's going to take away. This corner is going to be a little tricky because it's a shadow and it's coming in to this area more, so I'm going to be modest with my selection. See. Yeah. Sometimes, it'll grab that. That's not what we want so I'm going to undo that and I'll probably use Snapseed to clean that up. That is the next half I'm going to show you. That's just a really quick way to get rid of unwanted objects in your photos. It makes all the difference because before, it had those ugly corners and now it doesn't. This could be the same if you have like, for me, I don't use coasters as much as I should. I've got tea stains from my tea mugs on my desk, so I can get rid of that. I can get rid of ink marks or watercolor marks on the desk. I could get rid of cat hair. I could get rid of like an extra pen that shouldn't be in the shot, or thin achy corners. All right. Now, I'm going to save that. You can either modify the original one or you can save it as a copy. Saving it as a copy is always safe so I'm going to do that. It will maintain or it'll keep the original photo and then make a copy of what I just made. In the next app, I'm going to show you how to clean up just isolated areas like that top right corner I want to get rid of. 6. Adjust Isolated Areas: Lastly, I'm going to open snapseed and to open on your camera, you can tap anywhere and I'm going to select the image that I had just finished editing, so I've got the corner gone, I've got it nice and bright and now I just want to fix this upper corner. The first thing that I want to do, and usually I don't have this much warmth there but since I do, the one tool that I use on snapseed and I know it has so many edits, but I really only use it for one thing. If I go to tools on the bottom, it pulls up all of these options and I'm going to go to brush, which is in the center here. Now I have my brush panel open and you can see I've got dodge and burn, exposure, temperature and saturation, these guys here. When I select one, I also have the options, you see how it has a plus 10, I can go down plus five, eraser, minus five, and minus 10. You have options to change the strength, and sometimes this will be my dodge, which means that I am taking away the detail there whereas burn, if I go all the way down in the negatives, it's going to burn something into the image. This is the lingo that you would have if you are working in a dark room. But because it has so much warmth before I go into my dodge tool, I'm going to go into my saturation. The thing that I like about this is that you have control over just an isolated section, so any of these edits that you create won't affect the entire image. It will actually only do exactly what you want it to do, and at exactly the area that you want it to affect. If I wanted to clean this up, this area right here up, on a different app, then it would have to take effect on the whole image. I mean, some of them have brush tools, but this is the one that I've found is most convenient to be able to do just from your phone. I'm going to turn down the saturation because I want to see just how dark this guy is. I'm in saturation, you can see my plus 10 and I'm going to press the arrow on the left to get all the way down to minus 10. I'll zoom in a little bit, and as you zoom you can see this center circle here, and that shows you how large your brush is going to be. I'm just going to start, all I'm doing is moving my finger around this area to get rid of that saturation and I'll just do that until I'm happy with the result. You can see that is pretty dang dark. This is going to be something that dodge can only do so much with, but exposure might also do the trick, so any area that is dark, know that in your brush panel, you've got exposure and you've got dodge. I'm going to dodge it first to show you how much it's actually going to do, and it's going to do a pretty good job. But you can see that it's not really taking the exposure and turning the exposure up as much as it's just dodging the area so it's still in there but not as much. That's not going to do exactly what I want, so I'm going to exit. When you exit before you press this check button on the bottom right, it's not going to save what you did, make sure that if you do want the edits to save, to press that check mark. I'm going to select exposure, so it's got it on 0.7, I'm going to turn it up to one. That's going to be the highest exposure it's going to give me. You can see it's getting light right away. Problem here is that it's also showing me that the rest of this area, like on the bottom right, on the left, that's not quite as bright as I would like it to be. If I want it to be bright white, then I can hover over those areas, but that's a little much so I can go to my eraser, get rid of that, and then I might edit the rest of that with my dodge tool. Because really it's just this dark area right here, that I want to fix. Knowing that I'm going to go in and I'm just going to hit the very darkest area here, and then I might go down to three.That's another thing about this app, if you go down to three and go over that area, it's going to adjust based up of that new setting, which is cool. You don't have to undo and redo. That's fine, I lightened that enough and now I'm going to go in with my dodge tool and do the dodge trick. Just a side note, this is a particularly tricky image and not all of them are going to be this difficult, I just picked this one so that we can do a little troubleshooting together. I'm going to go into my dodge tool and I'm going to bring that up to 10 and then go over that, and then it's going to lighten a lot more and have more of an even feel now. See I just lightened it up and it just makes things a little bit cleaner, now I'm going to do the same thing to the right side and then to the left side. Then you can see on my palette I've got a little shadow, I'm going to turn this dodge tool down to five, so its not going to be as intense and just hit that area a little bit and you can see it clean it right up. I might do the same thing to my hanhemuhle part here. Now that that's done, overall, you can see that this image is a lot cleaner than what we had at first, and I've got my nice white areas, everything looks a lot better. Then I'm just going to save that, so select the check mark on the bottom right, and then I'm going to click export on the bottom right, and I can say share or save and I'm going to save it. Then I can say modify, just real quick. I'll say modify it and that's modifying the image that I imported. If you don't want to do that and you want to save it as a copy, say export, save as copy. I always recommend doing that, I don't because I'm trying to get this done fast. But that will preserve your original photo, that's nice. You can see two of my greens here, their temperature's a little cool, so if you want to get nit-picky, you can go to tools, go to brush, and then go to temperature. The plus is the warmer temperature and then the minus is going to be a cooler temperature. I can come over here and just hover over and see how they're getting a lot warmer, and that's just me hovering. I actually do want to do that because I want these to show a truer color. When I warm up that cool area, what it's doing is neutralizing the color so that it's showing exactly how it should be,and that will be really beneficial in your artwork too if it's giving off the wrong color because of the lighting. Then I'm going to actually save this one instead, modify that. If I go to my photos, I'm going to show you the before and after here, so what I had before is right here and then after is right here. It makes a significant difference. 7. Whatcha got?: Thank you all so much for watching this class. I hope that you've found some great apps and techniques that you can take away and enhance your photos with ease. Trust me the more that you develop or experiment with these apps, the more you develop your own rhythm, and then it comes like second nature and you can tackle exactly what you need super quickly with all three or just one or two of the apps, you'll find exactly your favorite go-to. So that was my recipe and I would love to see what you guys create. Please upload your before and after pictures in the project tab. We would all love to see the way that you have been able to use these edits to really enhance your images. So, thank you again so very much. Be sure to check out my other classes by visiting my profile and please be sure to press that follow buttons so that you're able to get notifications when I have new classes. Thanks again and I will see you guys next time.