Not Sure How to Add Depth and Wow to Flat, Boring Photos? Here’s How

Do you sometimes look at your images and think there's something missing? Something you can't quite put your finger on, but instinctively know? Very often your images are flat and lack depth. Here's exactly how to fix that issue and add real pop and life to your photos.

We all have our own particular workflows and styles for editing images. Some of you might start at the Basics panel in Lightroom and work your way down one by one. Others may open an image directly in Photoshop and then do some basic work with the Camera Raw Filter before getting into the myriad tools Photoshop provides. Others yet may do something entirely different. But it's very often the case that when we reach the end of our first stage of editing, we take a few moments to appraise our work, and we realize that something's not quite right. A very little something is missing, but we can't quite identify what it is.

And that very issue brings us to this great video by Adam Gibbs, in which he uses some images that his followers have provided in order to show what they're lacking and, most importantly, how to fix them. I'm not talking about obvious issues like a crooked horizon or unnecessary elements in the frame, such as ugly distractions. It's at that stage where your image is fundamentally sound but just lacks that wow factor that really makes you think you're onto a winner. The culprit is very often a lack of depth, and in this video, Gibbs runs you through exactly how to add depth to your images so you can feel confident in taking the necessary steps to turn your shots from good to great. Give it a look, and let me know your thoughts.

Iain Stanley's picture

Iain Stanley is an Associate Professor teaching photography and composition in Japan. He has presented at conferences globally and written for numerous international publications. To learn more about his work, his life in Japan, or how he plans to semi-retire at 64, check out his writing on Medium by clicking the website link above.

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This guy's Photoshop layout is jarring

I always get a little irritated when you decide to follow a tutorial, only to find the guy utilising a paid plugin right away. Say so in the title and don't waste my time.