Tyler’s Tips Episode 24: Editing a Collection of Images


Welcome to Tyler’s Tips. Today, I’m going to be talking about the importance of editing a collection of photos. One of the universal truths of being a photographer is we want to show people too many photos. We do it all the time. We do a shoot or we put together a collection of images, vacation, whatever, of a party. In my case, I do a commercial shoot and I need to send the clients a selection of proofs and almost universally, we want to send too many images.

I want to talk today about why it’s so important to aggressively edit those photos down and the main reason is super simple. It’s because most people just don’t care as much as we do about our photos. They just don’t. So, we make the mistake of assuming that they’re going to feel what we feel when they see the photos. Often, I think that that sits in a place of human psychology where, as a photographer, when we shoot a photo and then later we look at the photo, it reminds us of that moment, the real moment. The photo just reminds us of what we saw and what we felt.

Sometimes, it’s very difficult as the photographer to distinguish the actual photo from the memory of the event. They become kind of conflated in our brains and as a result, we send photos to share with other people or send them to our clients that aren’t necessarily that good or aren’t different enough from the photo right next to it that people want to see it. What happens if we send too many photos is people get bored and they get saturated and they can’t look at anymore and they’re done and we’ve lost our audience at that point, right?

We’ve lost our engagement. So, I would argue and I argue with myself all the time about how important it is to bring that number of photos down as aggressively as possible. Showing somebody something like 20 or 30 images is a lot. Really in today’s world of saturation, the number of images we all look at and if you’re going to ask somebody to seriously sit down and look at 20 images or 30 images, they better all be good.

Even as I’m saying this, I’m thinking to myself, geez, I need to go back and reedit portfolios and make them better because it’s so easy to just include too many photos as simple as that. So, there you are. Tyler’s tip for today.

Next time you’re putting together a group of images to share with somebody or to give to someone, go back through and be super aggressive and get rid of any duplication, get rid of any images that aren’t awesome and the people that you send them to will love the collection more because it’s smaller. So there you are. I hope that’s a useful tip. As always, thank you for your time and if you have any ideas or questions that you’d like me to discuss in a future episode, drop me line and I’ll work it in. Until next time.