Hey, y’all! I’ve been getting questions on how I edit my Instagram photos for a while now (you’ll find me at @LonestarSouthern) so I figured I’d put together a short and sweet post walking you through my three favorite, can’t-live-without, use-every-day photo editing apps!
I wish I could tell you there was a specific formula or pattern I follow… but every photo is different. Different lighting (like whether I take the photo in harsh lunch-time light or soft evening light), backgrounds and colors all factor into the editing process I eventually use, so no image really is the same.
BUT, there are a few tried-and-true features in the apps listed below that I usually factor in at some capacity or another.
Since I love bright, colorful and crisp images, you’ll find that a lot of these techniques really cater to that aesthetic. I encourage you to play around with these different apps, and perfect your summer Instagram filter routine! :) Read below for all the deets! I’ll be using this image to test out filters so you can get a first-hand look yourself:
blue dress (in Azure) // pink pom pom necklace // colorful tassel tote // strappy wedges
1. Camera +
Typically, the first app I will pull an image into is Camera+. My friend Molly McConn showed it to me my sophomore year of college, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Favorite features?
This setting gives a soft, bright look to otherwise-dark images. I usually sharpen an image a bit after using this filter, though, as I find it tends to blur!
– iphone filters
Another reason I adore this app? It hosts all the filters you find come with your iPhone, but makes them adjustable! For example, you can add 10% Chrome to your image if you please, instead of the full-blown, pre-set filter.
Snapseed is my favorite app for getting to the nitty gritty of a photo. It does an exceptional job of isolating details and making them tweak-able! What do I mean, exactly?
Within Snapseed, you are able to choose specific portions of an image to adjust in terms of brightness, contrast and saturation. Have a dark wall you’d like to make lighter? This tool lets you select the wall without the rest of the photo (in most cases) and adjust it accordingly. I don’t know what I’d do without it!
Snapseed also comes with a nifty little tool called “ambiance.” In essence, I’ve found this adjustment allows you to bring out lost detail in photos in a very natural, organic looking way. This example below is a bit of an exaggeration to show you what this tool can really do…
3. A Color Story
My absolute favorite of all editing apps, I was introduced to this magic-worker via an Instagram-ad, of all things! It makes the bright, poppy, color-lovin’ heart in me beat a little quicker. So. Good.
I went ahead and paid the eight something dollars to download the entire arsenal of filters, and have found it to be worth every penny. My absolute favorite?
This effect makes photos bright and sharp, immediately! A consistent filter, for me.
– color fog
While I personally haven’t used this in many photos, I love that you’re given the option of adding a pop of color to your images! A unique setting, for sure.
There ya have it, folks. My three must-have photo editing apps! Now it’s your turn… what are your go-tos? Any Instagram tips and tricks you’ve picked up on that have changed the game for you? I’d love for you to leave your input in the comments, and collectively we can learn from each other!
Love from Texas,