My friend Steve emailed a photo he took this weekend as four of his grandchildren walked though a museum. It’s a classically beautiful shot which I hope he enlarges and prints. It’s one of his best shots ever–very evocative.
We traded emails back-and-forth talking about it and what to do with it. The secret of 21st Century photography is it’s not finished when you press the shutter. There’s lots that can still be done.
I decided to add my touch this evening. My idea was to make the children more dominant. To that end I converted the photo to monochrome boosted the luminance a little and isolated the four kids from everything else. Then I blurred the background slightly while increasing the contrast on his subject.
Whether I am right or wrong in changing his image is almost inconsequential, because it’s really all a matter of taste. There is no right or wrong way to make a pleasing shot. It’s all subjective.