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Insider Tips with Sam Mak: Editing Composites

My name is Sam Mak and I am a passionate, amateur photographer. My passion for

photography started in 2013 using a smartphone and my life changed ever since. In 2014, I

moved from India to Canada where I spent a lot of time taking photos and creating sketches while working on my engineering program.


Eventually, I moved to Edmonton, Alberta and I was able to invest in a camera. February 2017 is when I bought my very first camera and it was the happiest day of my life. Having very little knowledge about cameras, it took me about 2 months of playing around to get a hold of manual settings. So far anything that I have learned about photography and editing is self-taught. I am never completely satisfied with my work because I believe there is always room for improvement.


Always know your tools for editing, nothing can go wrong testing out new tools for editing - you can always restart. I have personally failed using certain tools but I keep resetting and trying over and over until I see it working.


1. Creative mind.

Have a vision for the photos you take at a location, how you will use your surroundings to your advantage and what will look good for editing. For example, if I look at a building but the sky is dull and grey, I take that as my advantage so I can completely remove the sky and replace it. Being creative is the key to successful art.





2. Take your time before you start editing.

It is always a good idea to give yourself a break before you get into editing - this will help you think clearly and give more new ideas for editing.





3. Edit and restart.

Even when editing with vision, energy, creativity (and caffeine) things won’t always work out. I have spent hours and when it doesn’t work out, I push myself more in the hope that it will work out the way I want it to work. In the end, I could end up losing hours of work but will give it a fresh start some other day.





4. Final edit.

Make sure you have all your work in layers and named correctly. A neat workflow keeps your thoughts clean and makes it easy to edit. Always observe other content creators photos and try to understand how and what they changed, then try it yourself and learn new edits. Look for small details which can make a big difference at the end.





5. Get another perspective.

Check with a close friend about your idea and try to understand their perspective on your final edit. Then if you think there is a need for a change try it on a new layer and if it doesn’t work out you can remove it and save as it was.


There will be times when you would want to give up on all your hard work - don’t give up and don’t feel left out. We have a beautiful community to support each other.


See more of Sam's work on Instagram!

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