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5 Tips for Creating Vintage Wedding Photos

A Guest Post by Gemma Taylor.

In my experience, wedding photos edited to create a vintage-feel are becoming increasingly popular with couples, so dabbling in some vintage action can provide you with an attractive addition to your wedding package.

So here are my tips for using some subtle post-production to create an instant timeless feel. Literally at the click of a button, you can give a whole different feel to a photo, which is why my first tip is:

1. Don’t overdo it

By this I mean don’t give every picture from a wedding shoot a retro-touch, not all photos suit this kind of treatment. Transforming every shot for the sake of it can look gimmicky – instead be selective.

2. Recognizing the shots

So how do you select the right shots? Some you’ll just know. A bride’s 50’s frock, VW campers, cup cakes; anything with an inherent touch of vintage clearly lends itself to some nostalgic styling.

Other shots that can zing with a little clever post-production include portraits; people love seeing themselves edited this way. Also shots with lots of warm, natural light transform well, and all the better if you’ve caught any sunbeams or flare. At the other end of the spectrum, if you have a shot that’s on the dark side, some vintage action can brighten it up in instances when levels or curves alone just won’t cut it.


3. How to achieve the look

If you’re nifty with Photoshop there’s plenty of easy to find online tutorials that give you the guiding principles, which you can then intuitively adapt for each picture.

If you’re not as adept or want to save time the good news is that you can also find free actions to download, so all you have to do is open the image and hit play under your action tab in Photoshop.

An off-the-shelf action will have a different effect depending on the original image, but at Deviant Art, for example, you can download packs of actions (created and shared by users) so you can create a small library of actions, making it easy to experiment to find the desired result.



4. Be retrospective

We all know that if we sit editing pics for too long it gets difficult to tell what’s right and what’s not anymore, this becomes even more so when you’re making potentially quite drastic alterations.
Drastic results may be your intention, but either way allow time to go back and review your edits; if you’re not sure if you’ve gone too far you probably have.

5. Keep the originals

Which is all the more reason for keeping the originals, but not the primary reason I do. Even if a couple loves the vintage version now, trends can date and tastes change. Providing both versions is the best way to make sure their wedding pictures really are timeless.


Gemma Taylor is a wedding photographer based in Brighton, UK. You can find her at www.betticonfetti.com or by emailing hello@betticonfetti.com

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