When taking a photo it's easy to get your framing wrong, especially if you are in a rush. Here's how to re-frame your shot to get a perfect picture using photo-editing software.

The best way to make sure your photo is correctly composed is to discipline yourself to have a really good look in the viewfinder first. Zoom in and out and be prepared to move your position until you like what you see. It's all too easy to make a mistake, though, especially if you're in a rush, and for some scenes it just isn't possible to achieve perfect framing. Fortunately, editing can help.

Select the Crop tab at the bottom of the editing screen. Although you don't have to preserve the original aspect ratio you'll often want to do that to give a group of photos a common look and feel.

Select 'Crop by Original Photo Ratio' from the pull-down menu. Now click and drag in the photo to select the area you want to preserve. You can then drag the selected area around or just click outside it to start again. You can also stretch the selected are but if you use the side, top and bottom buttons it'll change the aspect ratio.

When you're happy with the selection use the 'Save Cropped Area' option rather than Save. Cropping isn't only useful for fixing errors – it can also be used for artistic effect. If you're not bothered about it fitting in with a slide show, you could try cropping with a more extreme aspect ratio.

This article is part of our Fix your photos for free feature, and uses the free Photoscape image editor from www.photoscape.org. The principles apply to other image editing software, but the steps below explain how to achieve the fix in Photoscape.

Reframe editing in Photoscape

By reframing your shot it is possible to take a poorly framed photo...

Poorly framed photo

...and improve on it (a lot)

Well framed photo