Wedding photography is such a niche market of photography, and everybody has something to say about how someone should edit photos. I personally feel like heavy editing in photoshop doesn't have much place in wedding photography EXCEPT when it comes to removing distracting objects/items from photos.
To be honest, I get pretty uncomfortable when a bride asks me to make them thinner or do heavy body modifications in my editing, but I will oblige as needed. I mean, there is a time and a place. I have been known to slyly remove a cut/bruise or a pimple on wedding photos but really try my hardest not to do any larger body alterations outside of that.
Here is a great example of what I mean. Sarah recently got married in a beautiful ceremony at her and her (now) husband's home here in Portland, and we got a chance to walk around the neighborhood before the festivities. In our quick portraits, I took some great photos of Sarah in her wedding outfit.
Beautiful, right? To make this photo in all of it's glory I did the standard lighting and tone correcting and adding, but I also did a little teensy bit of heavy lifting in Photoshop. Obviously I wanted this photo to focus solely on Sarah, so I did what I needed to do just that.
- The truck and the street sign had to go. They pulled focus from Sarah, and made the photo feel less formal.
- The lens I was shooting with was a wider 24-105 that only goes down to a F4, so I didn't have that depth of field I really wanted for this shot. to remedy, I used a hint of a gaussian blur to pull the focus in a little deeper on just Sarah. it's important to be careful with using an unnatural blur because it can so easily start making your photo look over edited.
And here we are!