I'm Not A Photographer. I'm A Photoshopographer.


Before I started delving into photography, I was a graphic designer. Even as a teenager I was creating websites and altering photographs taken by other people just for fun in my free time. I thoroughly enjoy working in Photoshop so a few years back when I began taking an interest in photography, Photoshop became my most important tool for making every photo look vibrant, professional and full of emotion.

Even now, when I take professional portraits or action shots I confess I know very little about how to work the intricate functions of my Canon T1i SLR digital camera. I usually just set the camera on auto and think only about basic lighting and composition. The real process of making my photos look professional takes place after the photo shoot, when I touch-up the photos in Photoshop. Because of this, I consider myself a photoshopographer rather than a photographer.

I've heard many photographers talk about how much they hate using Photoshop. Most photographers have very little graphic design experience so they will charge extra to make any changes to a photo, even if it's just changing a colored photo to black & white. For a photoshopographer it's quite the opposite. My favorite part of any kind of photoshoot is touching up the photos afterward. I have complete control over lighting, intensity, removing unwanted objects in the background; I can even change the entire mood of photo by altering the colors or make a smeared, blurry photo look artistic.

I've learned there are some who believe that altering photography in Photoshop is something to avoid because it can make photos look inauthentic or fake. I believe photoshopography is a beautiful new art form that allows a photographer to combine their own artistic ideas with real images.

To me, Photoshop isn't just for touching-up photos, it's a magical tool which gives me the ability to turn an boring gray photo into a vibrant work of art. Learning how to use Photoshop to enhance photos is an art form all it's own and it can take many years to master how to accurately use the program, let alone develop your own personal style. I love being a photoshopographer and don't plan to change my methods for creating professional photos anytime soon. The photos speak for themselves.

Article written by Shelly Allen.
Photos by Shelly Allen Photography

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