Overexposing Photography

I love sharing photography tutorials…lots of simple to understand camera tutorials and photography tips can be found under the photo tab above.  Today, I have a special treat…April, from house by hoff is going to share Overexposing Photography, aka lightening and brightening your imagesNormally, overexposing yourself in a picture wouldn’t a good thing…but today, it is!  I don’t claim to be a professional photographer, but I’ve been asked a time or two about how I take such pretty pictures…especially of my favorite little subject, Miss L.  I want to tell you about a recent discovery on my camera (I use a Canon RebelT1i), and how I can make a picture go from something that looks like this:

to a lighter, brighter, prettier this:
Here’s how it works…

First Secret:  Over Exposing Your Photos

A. I shot both of these pictures in the “P” or “Program AE” mode.

B. In the first photo my Exposure Level Indicator was set on “0”, meaning the camera was automatically adjusting my exposure (or, for you fancy folks, Shutter Speed + Aperture).

C.  When I manually adjusted my Exposure to “1”, it let in more light and slightly “over exposed” my shot, giving me a lighter brighter photo.  This is especially useful when the light source is behind the subject (like above).

Second Secret:  Cross Process Your Photos

I edit ALL of my photos using picmonkey.com.  This site has so many effects and editing tools for people who don’t have professional photography training, but know they want pretty photos that look professional (like me!!!!).  I used the “Cross Process” effect at 50% to achieve the look I wanted of Miss L eating her apple.  I used the same techniques described above during this little impromptu photo shoot:

 Light. Bright. Beautiful (if I do say so myself).
“Buuutttt, April”, you’re saying, “I use a Nikon”.
No problem!  Use the cheat sheet below from Esther Beazure Photography :
Thanks for reading!  I hope you stop by my blog and visit often! – April housebyhoff.blogspot.com.  My blog is more than just photography!  If you’re into home decor, crafts, or party planning, you might enjoy some of my favorite posts:
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  1. Excellent post! I love how you shared a cheat sheet! Very informative and insightful! Thanks for sharing!

  2. April says:

    I have a Canon camera and all my sports shots are blurry. Any suggestions? Thanks

  3. Liz Taylor says:

    Your tips & tutes have been so helpful to me using my new Canon camera.I hope you dont mind but can I put a linky link on my blog to yours to spread the word ? Thanks for showing us all your work.xx

  4. Kyla says:

    Just bought the Nikon D3200 yesterday and I went through every tutorial you’ve done today. I feel like I know my camera pretty well now. That’s for sharing your steps and tips with us. I learned so much!! Definitely sharing your blog with all of my friends!!!

  5. Kara says:

    Thank you so much again Aimee for the tips. They always help me take a better photo!!

  6. R. Joyce says:

    Thanks for this great tip. I am in the process of shooting a home office with very little light. I am so new at photography and there is so much information. So simple tips that make a big impact is my starting ground.

  7. Thank you for all the tips. I’m still no where with learning all my camera does, I need to start getting on the ball with it. I’ve bookmarked your page so I can refer to it when I have time to practice.
    I saw you sharing with Transformation Thursday
    Debbie 🙂

  8. Lyuba @willcookforsmiles says:


  9. Lyuba @willcookforsmiles says:

    Thank you for the tips 🙂 I just love that own shot 🙂

  10. Sherry says:

    Aimee, I got a new Canon Rebel for Christmas and I have been referring to your photography tutorials. Thanks so much for the info and for sharing this at the Open House party.
    xx, Sherry

  11. jennifer says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!! Just got a new Canon Rebel for Christmas and was having problems with getting bright pictures. This is perfect!

  12. Christina @ Floridays Mom says:

    What great tips. I am for sure going to give it a try with my Nikon.

  13. This is so helpful, thank you – just got the Cannon from Santa ; )

  14. Linda says:

    Thanks for the tips. All help with photography is appreciated! Happy new Year. Linda

  15. Wow, that was so easy even I could do it! Thanks for the tips and for the peek at such lovely photographs.

  16. Joani says:

    This was really helpful. Thank you for sharing. Have a great week.

  17. Thank you for posting this information! I am so new to cameras and I surely need to learn now that I’m constantly taking pictures for my blog. I hope this improves my work!

  18. Bonnie @ Uncommon says:

    Great tips!! Just got a DSLR for Christmas!!

  19. I have been told many times that I do not take a good photo but hell at least I keep trying and I use Picmonkey all the time to fix up photos and to copyright them before posting them on my blog and Facebook…………

  20. April Hoff says:

    In my opinion, Picmonkey is well worth the $60 a year for it’s user-friendly format. I was annoyed that they started charging, but it’s worth it to me to pay for it. Just my opinion! 🙂

  21. my camera is not as “fancy”…but definitely something to remember for future reference

  22. I Love Picmonkey! I use it ALL the time. I have Photoelements but I am to intimidated to use it.. So Picmonkey is my FOREVER friend. 🙂

  23. Azia says:

    Thanks so much for the little cheat sheet! I just bought my Nikon D3100 not long ago (but I did a lot of photography studying before the purchase), and although I am advancing rather quickly, I’m still getting numbers flip flopped. I cannot wait until I get my new lense to allow for a lower fstop! Your tutorials have been an immense help along the way!

  24. Rebecca says:

    Thank you for the tips. I am relatively new to the DSLR world. This is a tip I understand.

    I’m curious. How do you feel about picmonkey chargig for some of their features? I’m disappointed, as I was just learning how to use them. But, at $60.00 a year, shouldn’t I just make the plunge and buy photoshop? I would love to know your opinion and the opinion of your readers.


    • Hi Rebecca…I totally wish it was still free or at least the price wasn’t so steep, but I’ve been splurging despite. I have photoshop, but the ease of picmonkey definitely makes it my favorite option.

      Friends…Do you have any other thoughts on picmonkey!?!?

  25. Jill Flory says:

    I do the exact same thing with my Nikon! I knew exactly where you were going when I started reading! I’ve been experimenting with my A (aperature) setting too. You can set your white balance and it is a HUGE help! I’m having fun!

  26. Diana says:

    I’m terrible with the camera I’m going to try this. Yea, I know practice makes perfect!