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Of all the edits you can make to an image in Adobe Photoshop CC, cropping could potentially be the most transformative. A tighter crop can elevate a photo to another level. It can help to remove distractions around the edges, create an unusual aspect ratio or lead to a stronger composition. Here, a cinematic aspect ratio of 16:9 lets us come in tighter to our subject, enhance the mood and remove extraneous details around the edges.
Cropping can also be functional. We might need to straighten a wonky horizon, correct sloppy framing or prepare an image for printing at a certain size. With so many uses – both creative and practical – it pays to know the ins and outs of the Crop tool. It may come as a surprise to learn that it can do a more than just cleave off parts of the photo.
Of course, the best time to crop is in-camera when framing the shot. But with handy visual aids like overlays, we might be able to improve the composition after the fact. There are also times when things happen too quickly for proper framing, or the lens doesn’t have the reach. At times like this, a good crop can make all the difference between an average image or a head-turner...
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