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Keep It Clean: How to Avoid an 'Editing' Rejection

If you’re a Shutterstock contributor, you may have received the following rejection reason for a submission:

Editing: Image and/or elements of image have been poorly isolated.

The "Editing" rejection is used for photos that exhibit symptoms of poor isolation techniques, including artifacts left over from an element that has been removed from the image, a thin line around the object, or small details being lost.

Below are some suggestions on how to avoid this rejection in the future.

Example of a poorly isolated object

Example of a poorly isolated object

Close-up at 100% view

Close-up at 100% view

View your image at 100% full resolution prior to submitting.

Our reviewers inspect each image at 100% full-resolution view, so it's crucial that you do the same inspection prior to submitting. Overlay a grid on your image, so you can be sure that you are looking at each area and not missing something that a reviewer will catch.

Always plan your shot in advance.

Think about your subject matter and composition prior to shooting. Continue to experiment with the placement of objects or backgrounds as you shoot, rather than relying on Photoshop to eliminate any unwanted objects or backgrounds. 

Use a light meter to ensure the right exposure.

Putting a model or subject on a white background is one of the most difficult tasks to accomplish in Photoshop. A light meter will ensure that the background is properly exposed during the shoot. If the background is overexposed, this could cause spill light, making the isolation process more difficult.

Example of a poorly isolated object on white

Example of a poorly isolated object on white

Close-up at 100% view

Close-up at 100% view

Become an expert with your editing tools.

Get to know the Pen, Quick Selection, Masking, and Refine Edges tools in Photoshop. The more time you spend learning and experimenting with the wide variety of isolation tools and techniques at your disposal, the better you will get. 

We hope these simple suggestions will help you reduce the number of rejections you receive and increase the number of images in your portfolio!

Top image: Closeup mid-section of a photo editor by wavebreakmedia

More articles in this series:

The Silent Treatment: How to Avoid a Visual 'Noise' Rejection

Light Advice: Avoid Rejection for 'Poor Lighting' or 'Lighting Problems'