How To Get The Most Out Of Adobe Creative Cloud
Join Terry White, Adobe’s Worldwide Design & Photography Evangelist, to learn how to Get The Most Out Of Adobe Creative Cloud. In this class Terry demystifies what it means to subscribe to the Creative Cloud, how to find and install Adobe applications, and how to take advantage of all the additional benefits of a Creative Cloud subscription. From online storage space to increased collaboration tools, and from access to online assets to a wealth of mobile apps there’s a lot more to a Creative Cloud subscription than just installing and updating Adobe applications. By the end of this class you’ll learn how to empower your workflow with new tools, ensure you are getting the most out of your subscription, and know how to take steps to maintain it into the future.
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On Being Discovered / Mentored by Icons
When I was a student, David Bowie phoned up, out of the blue. I’d just arrived back in NYC, exhausted from my commute from Princeton, in time to hear, “Some guy on the phone says he’s David Bowie.” A prank call, no doubt. Then, David’s charming voice: “I’ve been following your work for several years and I’m a fan.” I was shocked. Though I’d passionately pursued my photography for years, it was mainly published in underground magazines and I was majoring in cultural anthropology, uncertain of my direction in life.
Bowie became my mentor, launching both my careers: first as a photographer, with the album cover for “Heathen,” then a dozen years later, as a director for my first major music video for his “Valentine’s Day.”
Was it luck, divine intervention? Of course—as is every breath, every being we meet. It was also, without doubt, the result of years of experimentation, creating work that though overlooked by many, was worthy of being ‘discovered’ by an icon.
Indeed, my career was built on intensive collaborations and being discovered – not just by Bowie, but by fashion svengali Isabella Blow, who commissioned my first major fashion magazine covers; by mogul Iman who gave me my first book cover and ad campaigns; by Andy Warhol’s Interview editor Ingrid Sischy, who encouraged my digital experimentation. Later, as a director, I was discovered by fashion icon Daphne Guinness, who starred in my first short film, and by Hollywood producer Rick Schwartz (Black Swan, Gangs of New York) who produced my short film that won Best Film at the International Fashion Film Festival, among others.
These icons worked with the world’s most famous artists—why choose me, a shy, Indian, publicity-adverse nerd (early on) working with a former classical harpist Markus Klinko? It soon became clear that opportunities come with challenges that the usual experts can’t resolve.
Bowie’s first most daunting request: create a cover of the book he was art directing, “I am Iman.” You may ask, what could be easier than shooting Iman, a most extraordinary supermodel? Indeed, problem was, the book was a collection of the most stunning images taken over 3 decades by the world’s most famous photographers – and Bowie had rejected them all. For the cover, he wanted something stronger, more true to the incredible character and brilliance of his wife.
I turned to a discovery of my own: young stylist GK Reid, whose futuristic ideas, global explorations and original approaches inspired me. Together we raided comics, films and fashion archives, and studied Iman, creating a concept of part amazon warrior, part goddess, all woman. Working with Markus we created the images we dreamed of.
Pleased with the results, Bowie said we’d talk soon about his album. A year passed. Then a second unexpected call: David invited us to his studio and immersed us in his music. I was enthralled hearing him sing and being asked my thoughts as he was recording. Post-9/11 the mood was dark, we discussed ideas and his developing lyrics, and intriguing, layered views on the state of the world. Likewise, he studied the details of my images and my cutting-edge digital processes. Now he had a new challenge: “I love what you’re doing with these hyper-real colors and digital effects on these women. I’d like to see what you’d do with the opposite, black and white 20’s darkroom effects, on a man–on me.”
In our many discussions, life and death were always close at hand. Before the “Heathen” shoot, David referenced philosophers and artists from Neitzsche to Man Ray, relating to the fear of the death of God and of society as we knew it after 9/11. The character he portrayed was blind.
To me, a truly great portrait is an image that captures a glimpse of the divine spark that animates its subject. An artist, like a shaman, shares a slice of the connection they felt with the subject, a sliver of both souls, as it were. That’s why discovering and mentoring collaborators is key, to kindle new combinations of energies to inspire each other to creatively thrive.
A dozen years later, when I was a fledgling director wracked with doubt about whether to take time off from photography to fulfill my great passion for film, I was again at a pivotal juncture, when David called: “I’m sorry it’s been longer than I expected. I’ve been waiting for the right moment.” My short films had just begun winning awards. “I’d like you to direct my video, for my favorite song on the new album.” Markus and I again collaborated, GK creative directed.
Though Bowie wanted a stripped-down, simple video, to contrast all his previous works, for weeks we discussed ideas and experimented conceptually together. Our connection was more charged than before with a powerful intensity, exciting, awkward, playful, yet always channeled into the work. David was reserved yet caring, profoundly encouraging yet eager to push beyond my artistic comfort zone. And he let me push him, to perform with a fierce intensity, bringing to life a character so alien yet influentially traumatizing to our society today, from whose point of view he wrote the song: a mall shooter / terrorist / psychopath. He wanted us to try to understand the mind of such a man, to find solutions.
After that shoot, David and I had many discussions of future projects, game-changing disruptive ideas we developed together that would have blown everyone’s minds. But he kept postponing scheduling, saying he’d get back to me soon, when he would have more time.
The afternoon of his death, I was giving a lecture to a large audience at Photo16 in Zurich. As I shared my work and stories, I found myself strangely lingering on David and his incredible importance to my life. Each time we worked together, we pushed each other beyond our comfort zones, to take our ideas to their extremes, to challenge ourselves and everyone else to their maximum and beyond. I will miss so much the excitement of knowing he was always working away at thrilling new projects, that he would call me about when I’d least expect it. I will miss dropping everything to rush to work with him for days or weeks to develop together new visions. And I will be forever grateful for his encouragement of my creativity and belief in my potential, at critical junctures of my life when I was uncertain of my way.
How To Build An Audience In Instagram with Scott Kelby
Take your Instagram presence to the next level! Join Scott Kelby as he shares everything he’s learned about creating an interesting and compelling Instagram account that encourages people to interact and follow you. This is an incredibly important time to be on Instagram since it is the only social media platform that is made specifically for photography. In this class Scott explains the advantages Instagram has over other social media outlets, how to work with your images before posting, the importance of captioning, why you need to use hashtags, and all kinds of tips and tricks to help you develop a strategy for growing your Instagram audience and have fun doing it. Keep an eye out for this class later today at KelbyOne.com!
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My first week as the photographer for the Dallas Stars was one of the craziest weeks in my professional career. In the span of 5 days, I became a new photographer.
This starts many weeks before the shoots with creative meetings. We were trying to figure out the new direction for the Dallas Stars for both the calendar which they hadn’t released the last couple of seasons because of lack of sales, and the media day photoshoot which they use for everything from billboards to programs to the commercial breaks during the broadcast of the games.
My creative direction for the calendar was easy. I knew exactly who the key demographic of this young and, according to my fiancee, “hot” team was. I had to make this team look sexy. The obvious answer there is something GQ. Let’s put these players in suits and the calendars will sell themselves. On top of that I had always wanted to do a Behind the Scenes of a movie set look. I pitched this idea to the Dallas Stars Foundation and they loved it immediately.
Over the next couple of weeks I built a set and gathered props to create the look for the calendar. In retrospect I wish I had hired a set designer because of the amount of time I put into building this set. Me being the hard headed control freak I am, I wanted full control of how this was going to look and I didn’t want any outside input.
Sunday is day one of two for the calendar shoot for the Stars. For the calendar, each month would be either an individual or duo from the team and then the cover was to be a shot of the crowd favorites. The only problem with that was that these players were split up over the two days. I think no problem, I’ll just set up a monopod and lock it down so we can composite each player together into the one image.
This wouldn’t have been a problem, but the next day we were shooting the calendar was three days later on Wednesday. Somewhere in that time, someone came into the studio and moved parts of the set. I don’t work out of a typical studio. I share a studio space with 60 other creatives in Dallas called WELD. I love this place, it is amazing. But this is where communal studio space becomes a problem!
Anyway, day one was a HUGE success and I couldn’t have been happier with how everything had gone. We had to wrap the shoot by 4pm because my crew and I had to be on a plane to Chicago for a two day photo shoot with Topgolf. We got into Chicago by midnight and into the hotel room by 1am, got a few hours of sleep and shot long, full days. That’s another story for another blog post though.
We flew back Wednesday morning at 6am to get back to the studio at 10am and started shooting the remainder of the calendar at 11am. THANK GOD we had everything set up and ready to go, because when we got back to the studio I think we all took a quick 30 minute power nap.
The second day of the calendar shoot went by without a hitch (other than the moved set). I chose to not let it bother me and just suck it up and accept the fact that I would have a little bit more post ahead of me. We wrapped around 4pm and immediately had to break everything down and get it loaded up into the van for the media day shoot the next morning – at 5am. Ouch!
My crew and I got up to the Dallas Stars training facility at 5am to start setting up. By this point, we had everything nailed down from multiple test shoots at the facility. I had everything mapped out, powers dialed in and we knocked out the set up in about an hour. The fun thing about media day is that I get roughly 5 minutes with each player in which I have to get 4-5 different looks.
I had three stations set up in which I would get at least two separate looks at each station by getting the player to face different directions and toggling lights on and off to give it a new look. The last station was the “action” station in which I would have the player skate at full speed and do a few different variations of shooting, stopping and skating.
INSERT HUGE PROBLEM. With all of the tests I had done, I had never had a problem with my lens fogging over. And wouldn’t you know it, the first player skates up to have his picture taken and my lens is completely fogged over. AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! DEAR GOD WHY!? Growing up in Texas, I have never had much experience with my lenses fogging over due to cold weather, so the first thing I do is stick the camera in my jacket to warm it up. This fixes it momentarily, but keeps fogging up every couple of minutes.
It ended up working out and I got images that myself and the Dallas Stars were both proud of. I know I wouldn’t have been able to knock out these shoots without the help and support of my amazing crew that week, and of course my fiancee who kept me from breaking out into tears on multiple occasions.
Inspirational Interview with Mark Rodriguez
Join Mia McCormick as she sits down with multi-talented artist Mark Rodriguez, who recently took the Best in Show award at Photoshop World. Marks’s background is in graphic design, and he is a successful animator and illustrator in his day job, but his unique and creative images are what have captured the attention of everyone at KelbyOne. Over the course of an hour Mia and Mark discuss what drives his creativity, how his family gets involved in his art, how important it is to Mark for his images to tell a story, the thought process behind every image, and so much more!
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8 Tips For Getting The Most Out Of A Point And Shoot Camera
1. Read The Manual This seems obvious, but the best way to get the most out of your point & shoot is to just READ THE MANUAL. This is the quickest way to get a general idea of all of your camera’s features and get familiar with settings and menu options.
Nowadays, with all the information on the Internet, it’s also likely there are some video tutorials on using your specific camera that I am certain would be useful.
2. Not All Point & Shoots Shoot Raw Some models will shoot RAW. If yours does then without a doubt, shoot in RAW. Shooting in RAW will capture all the visual data (unlike a compressed JPG) and allow you far more control when it comes to post-processing.
If your camera does not shoot in RAW, then shoot in the highest quality JPG possible. Keep in mind that, when it comes time to do your post-processing work, JPGs cannot be pushed nearly as much as RAW images.
3. Get Familiar with the Settings
If you are new to photography, chances are you’re not familiar with the different shooting modes. Here’s an exercise you should do right away: take a series of shots of the same subject using the different modes and adjust the settings between shots.
For example, in aperture priority mode, change the aperture between shots so that you can see what difference the aperture can make on a shot with regarding the depth of field. Then learn how to use exposure compensation to underexpose or overexpose a shot, and take a series of shots adjusting this.
It’s often easier to understand the difference these settings make when you can actually see that difference.
You’ll learn many lessons this way. For example: because it can be difficult to get a narrow depth of field with a point & shoot camera, you’ll find it helps to use a long focal length, get close to your subject, AND use a large aperture.
Also, get familiar with some of the additional features such as the macro setting. I have found this setting to be very useful when shooting portraits close-ups.
Don’t limit yourself. The best way to get familiar with the camera is to try each setting and get a feel for how it works. This will help you get comfortable with the camera and help you to develop your own unique shooting style.
4. White Balance
Your camera’s white balance settings will affect the overall color tint of your images. If your camera has white balance settings, it will probably let you shift between daylight, shade, cloudy, tungsten, fluorescent, auto, and custom.
Either set your white balance to auto or to the correct lighting that you are shooting in so that your images don’t end up too yellow or blue. If, however, you inadvertently change the white balance to the wrong setting, don’t panic. It can be corrected in post-processing, especially if you’re shooting RAW.
5. Learn the Basic Rules of Photography Sure, rules are meant to be broken, but one that you can’t get away from is composition- learn it! Whether you are using an expensive DSLR or a simple point & shoot, practice composition. Get familiar with where to place subjects and how to fill the frame. Study the rule of thirds, leading lines, symmetry, repetition etc.
6. When to Use Your Flash
Most point & shoots have an on-camera flash that is pretty convenient, but knowing when to use it is crucial.
Generally, most would tell you never to use your pop-up flash and opt for natural lighting—and for the most part I cannot argue that theory. The problem with pop-up flashes (even on DSLRs) is that they can be harsh and unflattering. This is because they are pointed directly at your subject and on the same plane as the lens, providing harsh light.
On the other hand, there are some good uses for flash, such as using it as a fill light. If a scene has a high dynamic range with really bright areas and darker spots, then one of two things can happen 1) Either your highlights will be blown out and your shadows will be exposed correctly or 2) Your highlights will be exposed correctly and your shadows will be black.
Using your flash can help balance the light in the scene and give a more even exposure throughout. By exposing for the highlights, you can ensure that they will not be blown out. You can then use your flash as a “fill” to provide additional light and exposure the darker areas of the scene correctly.
I often make use of this technique when shooting property interiors to ensure windows are not blown out and the interior has a nice even exposure with no shadows—this gives me a good, even exposure of the complete scene.
7. Avoiding Flash When Natural Light Is Limited Indirect, softer lighting is always better than harsh, direct lighting. When shooting an indoor portrait, try placing your subject near a window and use all the available natural, softer light that you can.
When natural light is limited, desk lamps, LED lights etc. make a great alternative. Just place them away from the camera and not too close to the subject for softer, more flattering light. You can also soften the light more by holding a white plastic bag in front of the light to diffuse it.
8. Zoom, Zoom, Zoom
The best thing about many point & shoot cameras is the zoom capability without needing additional lenses. The Canon PowerShot I use boasts 35x optical zoom. With patience and a steady hand, you can get some really awesome shots:
Don’t be afraid to experiment with the zoom. Go wide angle and low down for a more dramatic feel, put your camera on a tripod, use a slow shutter speed, and zoom the lens as you take the shot.