art of the photography crop by dallas portrait photographer, jason ulsrud

The Art of the Crop

Since the beginning, Photography has always fascinated me, and with the Digital Age of Photography, it fascinates me even more.

I see so many amazing images, and think, “I wonder what that amazing image started out looking like?”

Every photograph taken has it’s birth in either an old school negative, or a new school RAW file, which rarely ever gets seen.

As Photographers, we only want to share our best work.

Well, I want to open up my creative process and share where some of my favorite images come from in a new series I’m calling the “Art of the Crop”.

All about the Crop

Rarely does a photographer ever produce a final piece of work, free from some sort of manipulations such as burning, dodging, colorization, and cropping.

These simple edits will either make or break a photographic image.

In my humble opinion, mastering the edit is as much of an art as the actual photographic process, and maybe even more.

And nothing speaks more to this truth than how a photographer chooses to “Crop” their image.

From Photography Masters such as Ansel Adams and his amazing landscapes, to Arnold Newman’s portrait of Igor Stravinsky, the “Art of the Crop” has been used to create amazing compositions.

An Artist understands and appreciates the power of the Crop.

The Art of MY Crop

I want to emphasize once again, “What you do after the Photographic process is complete, is as much of an Art as the Photographic process itself.”

With a good understanding of the “Art of the Crop”, an average image can be made Great.

That is, with the right aperture, shutter speed, ISO, lighting, and all the other fancy things we do as Photographers, I believe every image can be made better with the “Art of the Crop”.

Here are a couple of my image Croppings.

the crop of my editorial portrait of josh from davis street tattoo

the crop of my editorial portrait of ryan from brass tacks barber shop

the crop of my pet portrait of titan the great dane

That’s a Bunch of Crop

You might be thinking, “A good photographer doesn’t need to rely on such post-processing to create a great image!”

Well, I humbly disagree.

While there may be a select few photographers processing images with NO post-processing, I bet 99.9% of photographers are manipulating their images in some way before presentation.

For me, Lightroom and Photoshop, are as much a part of my photographic tool bag as my Canon 5d Mark 2, or my Einstein strobe.

Oh, and don’t forget to comment below, and tell me I’m full of Crop!

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