5 Edits that Take Less than 2 Minutes per Picture

When I was a teenager, my dad had Adobe Photoshop on his computer, and I could spend hours on that program trying things out. I would change lips to blue and turn the picture into a painting. But I don’t have the luxury of spending hours upon hours on the computer to edit pictures anymore. Time is precious and I have to spend it where it makes the most sense. That’s why if I need a picture edited, I almost always just go for the bare minimum because if I start playing around, each picture could take 15-30 minutes to edit and before I know it all my precious time is gone. Poof!

Most pictures only need these 5 quick edits. Find out what they are and how to do them in PicMonkey so you can use more of your pictures for photo projects!When I am uploading my pictures to the computer, I should really take the time to a) delete bad ones, b) organize the rest, c) edit the best ones, and then d) rename and tag those edited ones. This way, I wouldn’t have so many pictures to sort through and work on when it comes time to do a project.

Editing the best ones should really not take much time if I stick to a process.

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5 Quick Edits in PicMonkey

I’ve found that most pictures only need 5 adjustments, or edits, to look a whole lot better. I’ll walk you through a PicMonkey tutorial to show you what I’m talking about.

I actually timed how long it takes to edit a picture on PicMonkey by just making these 5 adjustments and it was a whopping 1 minute and 25 seconds (some even took less time). You can round that up to two minutes per picture just to be safe, and you could easily edit 30 pictures in an hour if you had a process down. Yes, I know you can do batch edits in Photoshop, but not everyone has access to it. This is basically if you just want to use PicMonkey.

Upload Picture

Click Edit on PicMonkey homepageGo to PicMonkey* and upload a picture using the edit button.

Stay on the Basic Edits tabStay on the default tab, “Basic Edits,” so you can do the first four adjustments to your picture.


Click on Rotate and straighten the pictureThe first edit you will want to do is Rotate. All you have to do is move the little lever one way or the other to straighten the picture. This particular picture only needed a little tweaking.


Click on Exposure and then Auto Adjust and see if you like thatNow click on “Exposure” and then “Auto Adjust.” If you like what it does to your picture you can leave it, but I never like it.

Custom adjust the exposure if the auto adjust doesn't work for youI always adjust the exposure settings myself. Most pictures are too dark, so I increase the brightness. But this particular picture was too bright, so I decreased the brightness a bit. Just be careful not to overdo it on any one adjustment. Contrast will probably not need too much adjusting (at least that’s what I have noticed for my own pictures).


Click on Colors and adjust saturation and temperatureNow move on to “Colors” and play around with both saturation and temperature. You can also use “auto adjust” here, but I don’t ever use that. I tend to increase both saturation and temperature for my own pictures, but only by a tiny amount. I don’t want the picture to look fake.


Use the sharpen tool if it's just a tad blurrySharpness can be tricky. If a picture looks just a tad blurry, I like to sharpen it just a little bit. I don’t want to overdo this edit either because it can make the picture look grainy and overdone. I usually just do a sharpness of below 14 and clarity around 9-12%.


Click on the effects tabNow click on the “Effects” tab on the very left side of the screen. This is where you will find the last adjustment you should make to help your picture stand out more.

Click on Boost and notice the default setting makes the picture look terribleIt’s called “Boost,” and you will notice as soon as you click it that it makes your picture look terrible.

Adjust the lever on boost to one that looks much better

Just be sure to move the lever all the way to the left where it says 0% and then slowly move it up from there until you like how your picture looks. If your picture looks weird with just 1% boost, then you don’t need to use that edit. I just find that it helps bring out the colors even more and just completes the picture.And that's it!

This is the final picture. Do you want to see the before?

Original Picture

I definitely like the edited picture much better!

Now I’ll show you another picture that I edited with these 5 quick edits in under 2 minutes.

Most pictures only need these 5 quick edits. Find out what they are and how to do them in PicMonkey so you can use more of your pictures for photo projects!  Most pictures only need these 5 quick edits. Find out what they are and how to do them in PicMonkey so you can use more of your pictures for photo projects!

See the difference?!

So as you can see, it really doesn’t take much time and effort to edit the best pictures that you upload to your computer. If you get in the habit of editing pictures on a regular basis, you’ll have more time to work on photo projects instead of spending the time editing every picture!

Do you edit your pictures when you upload them to your computer?

Would you like to organize your pictures on your computer? Here are my other posts in this series:

Organizing Pictures into Monthly Folders
Deleting Pictures
Renaming and Tagging Pictures
Quick Edits for All Your Pictures

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  1. […] the pictures ready to go (as in, they’ve been edited already; you can use my handy post on the 5 edits every picture needs to get started if you’re not sure). It will also be helpful if you know exactly the color scheme […]

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