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Traveling is one of the very few life experiences we like to share with the world through the lens of our camera. Be it a mobile phone or a digital camera, capturing moments and editing travel photos that move souls is easy nowadays. 

However, sometimes, the pictures are not ‘ready’ to publish. They need a few changes to adjust colors and add meaning to your photos. 

In this article, I’m sharing some valuable tips and tricks to do your travel photography right and the five best travel editing photos to spruce up your experience. Scroll down if you’re just looking for the best travel photo editing apps out there!

Editing travel photos right: 5 Tips and Tricks

#1 Straighten the crooked photos

Sometimes, travel photos are not aligned with the horizon or a vertical line in the frame. Such crooked photos look really bad and needs to be fixed right away. 

The ruler tool is responsible for straightening images. I suggest Photoshop for minor edits and tweaks to your photos. But, other software do the job pretty well. In fact, your average iPhone is capable of straightening tools, when you head to edit and scroll to ‘straighten’.

I recommend cropping the photo before making adjustments.

#2 Control exposure and readjust the levels

Travel photos often have high contrast. Most of the images end up underexposed with dark shadows. While some of them are extremely overexposed. And this is when proper knowledge on editing travel photos comes in handy. 

The first rule of travel photography is to avoid high contrast. But sometimes, it’s not possible. Therefore, adjusting the level of your images is the best bet. 

To increase the contrast level of your photos, darken the shadows and brighten the highlights. 

#3 Make the colors stand out

Make the colors pop, by increasing the saturation level of your photos. I recommend only making small shifts in saturation, as highly saturated photos look super unnatural and noisy. 

The number one tip to master editing travel photos is to increase the brightness and saturation in moderation for realistic pictures.

#4 Sharpen up and bring your pictures to life

Sharpening up your travel photos makes them crystal clear and undoes the appearance of blurry lines. This feature improves the quality of your photos by enhancing contrast along the edges.

You can sharpen certain areas of your photos to look crispier with whatever app you use. However, always have a light hand on sharpening levels while editing travel photos as too much can be overwhelming.

#5 Get adventurous with greyscale images

While editing travel photos, the use of color photos can feel mainstream. So, I recommend grayscale images, as mono is awesome to grab instant attention.

Three things are essential to creating stunning black and white photographs. 

  1. Light and tone
  2. Shape and form
  3. Texture

Following these points will add more meaning to your photos. Also, go for presets that show excellent contrasts without losing shadows or highlights.

5 of the best travel photo editing apps you can try right now

Now that we’re done with the basic tips and tricks, it’s time to dive into the best travel photo editing apps.

Out of a myriad of software, I have shortlisted 5 of my favorite photo editing apps that are simple and easy to use.

#1 Snapseed

Snapseed travel photo editing app

If you don’t want to turn on your PC every time you need to edit your photos, Snapseed is your go-to app. The fact that it has all the basic tools like Photoshop had me sold.

Also, the interface is simple and easy to use, unlike many photo editing apps. 

Snapseed offers:

  1. Image tuning and adjustments
  2. Healing tool for removing objects from your images
  3. Frames, texts, and curves
  4. Filters, Vignette, black and white, HDR.

#2 Canva

Top travel photo editing apps contender Canva

From adding watermarks to your images to making adjustments and creating captivating collages, what is it that Canva doesn’t offer?

Not just the best travel photo editing app, Canva is an all-in-one tool available on Playstore and on the App Store.

Using Canva is easy as a breeze, and starts with setting up your profile. There’s also a premium version available for Canva to personalize your pictures a little more professionally.

Pro tip: If you’re a travel blogger, you can also add watermarks to your images that align with your blog.

Canva offers

  1. Free and paid templates
  2. Graphics, fonts, animations
  3. Photo effects, filters, and adjustments.

#3 Ribbet

Ribbet photo editing app

Similar to Snapseed, Ribbet is less well-known, but none-the-less, one of the best travel photo editing apps. The interface is pretty straightforward and convenient, with impressive filters.

Also, the retouching tool on Ribbet is so advanced that it allows making all necessary adjustments without disrupting the pixels.

#4 TouchRetouch

Taking perfect travel photos is a daunting task… What if an unwanted object or person pops suddenly?

Luckily, apps like TouchRetouch allow you to clean up your photos with just a single touch. Though nothing beats Photoshop in removing tricky objects, TouchRetouch works just fine for minor adjustments.

Not only you can remove unwanted objects or persons from your photos, but you can get a little creative with this tool as well. For example, making the objects hover in a scene to give it a dramatic effect.

Available on the App Store and Google Play.

#5 Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

Adobe lightroom travel photo editing apps

When it comes to editing photos, Adobe Photoshop needs no introduction. However, for people more active on mobile phones, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is nothing short of a blessing. 

There are endless features and tools with amazing downloadable presets for your travel photography, that too, for free. 

If lugging a PC with you on the move is not an option, you can get your images sorted from anywhere you are. Just transfer the image to your phone and enjoy the perks.

You can adjust exposure, colors, brightness, and contrast to add dimension to your travel photos. Also, the built-in presets allow you to fine-tune your selfies and make your portraits pop.

What are your favorite travel photo editing apps?

In short, there’s just so much you can do with 5 of these best travel photo editing apps at your fingertips. What are your favorite apps for editing on the move?

Up next…

Taking the perfect family portrait yourself is HARD – so hard we’ve had to dedicate a two part series to the subject. But it’s absolutely doable if you go about it right… So here’s how to achieve a photo worthy of being shared with the relatives – without having to make an appointment with a professional.

In Part I of ‘Take the Family Portrait Into Your Own Hands‘ we learned about what to be aware of in terms of planning, technology and the necessary challenges which are a part of it.

Now we’re going to answer all the questions that’ll come up during the photo shoot itself. But no worries, proper planning is half the battle. 🙂

Not sure exactly what to use your family portrait for, even if you DO end up creating the perfect one? We have 10 DIY photo gift ideas to get you feeling inspired.

Natural poses for a family portrait

Glückliche Familie posiert im Park
Photo source: Shutterstock.com / Monkey Business Images

Sure, it seems like this should be easy, but oddly, this topics is at the top of many people’s minds: Creating a natural pose for the camera. Photographers as well as models are often stumped on this. But no worries, a few tricks can solve the problem without too much trouble.

Rule number one: If everyone in the family is enjoying themselves then they won’t just be having more fun, but also increasing the chance of an authentic family portrait. As the photographer, you also have the responsibility to create a relaxed atmosphere.

Another trick for making the photo shoot as natural as possible – instead of directing and demanding different poses, the models could interact with the location, walking though the scenery together, hugging each other or even playing a game (a great solution if you’re doing a photo shoot involving small children).

The aim should be taking ‘real’ photos! Because then it’s not just a really nice end-result, but also a day which the family will remember as a great day spent together!

Searching for a guide on cool and aesthetic poses? Say no more! Here, you’ll find some great on ideas and examples which are easy to copy.

Give clear instructions during the family portrait shoot

Glückliche Familie durch den Park spazierend

Hang on… a second ago you said I shouldn’t go all Master of Ceremonies on them? True, but clear instructions are still important – particularly for your models and in turn to create the best family portrait possible.

Clear the way for a relaxed atmosphere, have fun and, as you casually take your photos, give some clear instructions on what people should do: someone should move slightly? Show them with your body language. Someone’s clothes needs patting down? Say it. There could be a few more smiles on faces? Not a problem, lead with your tone.

Straight away you’ll notice that your instructions can be easily be misunderstood. Something like ‘a little more to the left’ is the opposite for your model. Use your body language and turn yourself in the right direction instead to stay efficient. Objects in the setting can also be used to help; “look to the sea” or “turn towards the tree”…

And at the same time keep in mind the smaller details, like the hand positions of your models, how they’re holding their head and if their clothes are sitting nicely. Don’t worry, with time these things will strike you immediately.

Take loads of photos

Zwei Kinder Kissenschlacht spielend

Now that we’re done with how to communicate during the photo shoot, we can forge ahead with another topic. How many photos you should be taking…

Of course, there’s no exact number, but our tip goes like this: don’t be stingy with your photos. There’s no downside. A lot of photographers out there are familiar with that sinking feeling that comes when they’ve done a group portrait only to realize afterwards that someone in the photo has their eyes half closed, or someone’s in the middle of speaking.

Taking lots of photos increases the chance that everyone looks picture-perfect in at least one of the photos.

One way to deal with this is by setting up your camera so that it takes a series of shots automatically. Make sure you think about the exposure time too, so that you avoid getting any unwanted blurry spots if someone moves. A good starting point is 1/250 seconds.

Be open to new family portrait ideas

Perfektes Familienfoto: Vater und Kinder spielend am Strand im Sonnenuntergang

This is especially true if you’re working with kids. If you have ideas already in mind before the shoot – well, great! But if your family isn’t really convinced by them or the kids are excited to try something else, roll with it.

It’s always a better result if you manage to take a nice, unplanned – but perfect family portrait showing a happy family.

Speaking kids, here’s some great ideas on capturing the little ones’ personalities on camera

Keep it simple

The idea of a perfect family portrait is that is has earned its place on the wall for a while to come. They should be photos which you still want to show off in 10 years time, or even show to the grandkids.

If you’re trying for a timeless look, then avoid wearing trendy edits or accessories (unless a kind of decade snapshot is what you’re going for!) – because they might look very weird to you in 20 years time.

If something does catch you as plain wrong, well thankfully there’s such a nifty thing as photo editing… Find out the best online tools here.