Posted by Justin Benson
Updated: December 13, 2023

How to Cull Photos Like a Pro: 2023 Edition

In this article, we'll explain why culling is important and show you how to cull in the most efficient way ever!

You want to produce images that wow your clients when you're a photographer. But getting an image perfect usually involves taking multiple shots to get it right.

This is why photo culling is such an important part of your workflow.

You might be shooting a moving target, like a little kid dancing at a fast-paced recital or a wedding couple dancing to their first dance. There may be instances where you might be bracketing for exposure or the right depth of field.

All this means is you end up with many images, but only a few of them have that moment that brings it all together and makes your client say WOW when they see the photo.

Showing your clients too many photos dilutes the impact of those really awesome photos you want to feature.

Here are some other important reasons to cull your photos

Culling removes duplicate images

You may shoot several or even dozens of images of one scene, and culling helps you hone in on that scene's best.

It's important to remember that you're looking for the technically perfect image and the one with the best composition, lighting, and feeling.

Similar images can easily be identified, and the best choice can be made to keep them in or out of the final images delivered.

How to cull with Aftershoot

Culling removes blurred images or shooting mistakes

Photography is an art, and it's a science! As a photographer, you're always making creative choices to come up with fresh and innovative ways to showcase your art.

Sometimes those choices work, and sometimes the images teach you something but don't cut.

Photo culling allows you to eliminate images with poor composition, poor lighting, or that are just blurry.

How to cull with Aftershoot and get rid of blurry images quickly

Culling helps you avoid over-processing your photos

If you have 100 images of one scene and you try to edit all of them, chances are you're going to start to get burnt out before you even finish!

By culling your photos down to the best ones, you can spend more time editing each individual photo and really perfecting it, rather than just quickly processing a large batch of photos.

Culling images improves your workflow

The whole point of photo culling is to save you time in the long run!

By taking the time to cull your photos now, you'll be able to edit more efficiently and quickly in the future. You'll also be able to find specific images much more quickly when you need them.

Culling can help you see your images with a fresh pair of eyes

When you take a break from looking at your photos for a little while, you'll come back to them with fresh eyes.

This can help you see things you might have missed before and make different creative decisions the next time you shoot. 

Culling really does allow you to edit and improve your work!

Aftershoot CULL duplicate detection

It saves photo editing time

When the culling process is done, and you begin the job of fine-tuning or editing your photos, you'll find that less is more.

Fewer photos mean you have more time to give them that signature look clients are looking for!

Culling images saves storage space

Culling also declutters your hard drive and saves you valuable storage space.

With the average RAW photo file taking up around 25 MB, those photos can add up quickly! You'll eventually run out of space if you're constantly shooting and never deleting anything.

Second-guessing while culling is the #1 time-waster in workflows

You've probably been there yourself, manually flipping back and forth between images trying to choose the "best one."

This process can be really tiresome, not to mention it can make you feel like your photography skills are lacking.

That's where Aftershoot comes swooping in to save the day. Read on to learn how to cull with Aftershoot.

How to cull photos

Since we've covered why photographers need to cull photos, let's go over how to cull your images efficiently.

Culling photos manually is tedious and time-consuming

The first step in culling your photos is to go through all of your images and select the best ones. This can be a very time-consuming process, especially if you have a lot of photos to go through.

This is precisely why we created Aftershoot, a revolutionary culling software that tremendously speeds up your culling process using the power of artificial intelligence.

Check out this video for a quick rundown of how to cull with Aftershoot:

Ingest and Aftershoot will do the rest!

With Aftershoot, all you have to do is ingest your photos and let the software do the rest.

It will automatically select the best images for you based on several factors, including blur, duplicates, closed eyes, and composition.

You control the settings on Aftershoot, telling it whether you want to cull RAW or JPEG images and how strict you want it to be when looking at sharpness, emotion, etc.

Speaking of control, you can opt to use the culling in or culling out methods in Aftershoot by using the My Selections feature if you prefer culling in.

You can also opt not to have Aftershoot's AI make selections for you by choosing from two culling types:

  1. AI-Assisted Culling
  2. Automated AI Culling

With AI-Assisted Culling, you're in total control. Our AI will only assist you in grouping duplicates and showing you Key Faces.

With Automated AI Culling, Aftershoot will make suggested selections for you based on your culling preferences, which you can then review.

Once you've ingested your images, chosen your culling type, and set your culling preferences, simply hit "Start Culling" and let Aftershoot take care of business while you enjoy your free time.

When you make changes to the cull, Aftershoot learns

Each time you give Aftershoot feedback on an image, it learns and becomes more accurate the next time around.

This means that over time, Aftershoot will get better and better at selecting the photos you want.

When your final images are ready, Aftershoot will send you an email

If you're a wedding photographer who has been manually culling images, imagine how great it would be to come home after a wedding and wake up the next day to have all of your best photos chosen for you.

In a matter of hours, you could be going through all the images and selecting your final photos to edit in a fraction of the time.

Aftershoot makes your culling process faster, allows you to add star ratings, and ensures you're ready to begin the editing process with only the best photos from the shoot.

When your photo cull is done, you're still the boss

You can then quickly go through the Aftershoot-selected images and make any final adjustments yourself.

This process is much faster and more efficient than culling photos manually, and it frees up your time to focus on other aspects of your photography business.

AI-powered culling software is the way to go!

Aftershoot is the world's first photo-culling software that uses artificial intelligence to cull photos for you.

We've trained our AI engine on over 1 million images to learn what makes a great photo. Every day, thousands of photographers use Aftershoot to cull their photos and get on with their lives with less stress and more free time for creativity.

Aftershoot has been rated 5 stars on Trustpilot with over 650 reviews and counting. But don't just take our word for it...

Aftershoot is the best photo culling software on the market because we help select those high-quality photos you want your clients to see.

Professional photographers have called us a "game-changer" because we help them slay their workflow!

We make the whole process so easy; from downloading our free trial to navigating through the user interface, we're here for you.

Get your life back!

If you're ready to take back your time and get your life back, sign up for a free trial of Aftershoot today.

We know you'll love how much time it saves you from the monotonous job of photo culling!

In just a few minutes, you'll be up and running and ready for Aftershoot to start culling photos and giving you back precious time to market, grow your business, or spend time with friends and family.

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