Using Creative Edge Effects

One of the hottest trends in print competitions these days is submitting photographs that have irregular, ragged, and artistic edges. Even National Geographic magazine used soft-edged photographs to illustrate their story on cartographer David Thompson. I’ve found that it’s easy to produce these kinds of effects by using digital imaging software such as OnOne Software’s PhotoFrame.

In case you’re wondering why you might want to add creative edges to your photographs in the first place, here are a few reasons you might consider:

By providing visual relief from straight-edged vertical and horizontal rectangular shapes, photographs that have irregular edges add variety to your portfolio images.

Images with white or light colored corners tend to have their edges disappear off the final print, but a creative frame adds a border—a decorative one—to the photograph while given the finished image a more clearly defined edge.

Instead of cropping to clean-up distracting elements on the sides of photograph, you can use creative edges to hide minor compositional flaws while adding a little panache to the image at the same time.

Creative edges can add an artistic touch to an image that you might feel might otherwise appear too literal.

Playing with creative edge effects is fun during the process and afterwards when you admire how the finished image looks. For me, it’s one of the more satisfying digital darkroom techniques and, gathering from viewer reactions, many other people like them as well.

Author: Joe Farace

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