I am a teacher at heart, and being that is who I am, it's time for a little before and after. When I look through my lens I see many possibilities. I tend to see the RAW image first, but then as I focus, I see how I will be able to enhance an image with Photoshop. The image above is a perfect example of this. On the morning I shot Hannah's senior pictures, we had beautifully overcast weather. When I saw how the orange chairs popped against the green grass I knew this was an image I wanted to capture for my client, but it would take a little post production.
Here is the original image. My goal was to capture Hannah from head to toe and include the maximum amount of green. The image, of course, is far from perfect (What senior would want a bright blue matched set of Port-a-Potties in the background of her picture!), but the exposure, lighting and pose worked for me.
In this crop you'll notice the absence of the aforementioned potties, but now I have some leftover clutter that is distracting the viewer from Hannah's beautiful smile. Notice how your eye is distracted by the chairs in the top left of the photo, then gets caught by the light fixture hovering just to the right of Hannah's head. The leaf in the bottom right of the photo isn't so pretty either. All of this clutter needs to go! In my early days of Photoshop, I would have attempted to clone or heal away the distractions, but now one of my new favorite tools is the "Content-Aware Move Tool." Using "Content-Aware" and a little cloning it's like the clutter was never there. The really cool thing is that the image is not compromised in any way.
Hannah still looks great, and unless you see the original image, the viewer will never know there is anything missing in the shot.