Posts By Brad Moore

Hello every one! My name is Regina Pagles, aka ‘shineylewis’ and I am a hobbyist photographer living in Springdale, Utah.

I am honored to be writing a post for this blog. Thank you Scott Kelby and Brad Moore for providing me this opportunity. Dreams really do come true!

It was roughly 20 years ago that my dad purchased the first version of Photoshop and installed it on his Apple 2e computer. We had no idea how to use the software and it was clearly above our skill level. In spite of this, we managed to figure out how to place my dad’s head onto Arnold Schwarzenegger’s body. To this day, I remember our laughter!

I was fascinated with the program, but never found the time to devote to learning all of it’s intricacies. I always said to myself, “One day…”

Fast forward 20 years: that day has come. I am obsessed with learning Photoshop and have finally decided in earnest to master the program to the best of my ability.

I considered myself primarily a landscape photographer until I was first introduced to studio lighting and portraiture at Photoshop World 2010. Westcott had a ‘Shoot Out’ booth on the Expo floor with professional lighting, sets and models. I was instantly hooked and spent hours taking hundreds of photographs. Upon returning home, I entered Westcott’s Flickr Photoshop World Shoot Out contest and amazingly, won first place. Shortly after, a truck pulled up to my front door and delivered a bunch of lighting equipment. Luckily, my husband and I had the space and we set up a small 400 sq. ft. studio. I can’t imagine ever going back to landscapes!

Even though it has been 2 years, studio lighting is still a mystery to me. I approach each photo shoot as an experiment. Sometimes the experiment goes well and sometimes not as well as I had hoped – but it’s all a learning experience. It's the same when it comes to retouching. Some images are winners and quite a few end up in the trash can. I need to constantly remind myself: “Every shot does not have to be a masterpiece.”

I would like to make it clear that I am not a naturally gifted artist or photographer. In fact, I consider myself to be quite a hack. My theory is that if you throw enough mud against the wall, some of it is bound to stick. I just persevere.

A huge inspiration of mine is Joel Grimes, and my favorite quote from him is that “Hard work will out perform talent any day of the week.” That quote resonates with me because I am just a rather boring and realtively unimaginative person with a lot of patience and drive.

Early on, I worried about what others thought about my style of processing. Will THEY like it? I didn’t even know who THEY were, but their opinions were very, very important to me. Thankfully, I stopped caring and that’s when I started improving. The only approval I seek now is my own.

I realize that my style of retouching is not for everyone. It is not important to me that my images remain ‘natural.’ I view the face of the person that I am photographing as a blank canvas, and I have no idea what the result will look like in the end. Sometimes the resemblance to the subject is similar in the finished version, sometimes they don’t look anything like themselves. I don’t like blemishes, wrinkles, uneven skin tones or defects on myself and I have a tendency to obliterate them on any portrait I retouch. Up until very recently, I would apologize for this fact, however now I have decided to make it a disclaimer.

Photography and retouching are just a hobby and I do not accept paid assignments. I made a promise to myself not to turn my passion into a career and I am proud to consider myself an amateur. It is and always will be just a hobby, albeit one that I eat, breath, sleep and dream about. It is liberating to pursue something just for the sheer love of it. For me, it doesn't always have to be about money.

This is a subject that I feel very strongly about and have actually gotten into serious arguments over. It amazes me how many people that I come across who feel that if a person doesn’t charge money, then their work or art has no value. Worse still, some feel that I devalue their work because I ‘work for free’. I have ruined many hobbies in the past, turning them into jobs. It may sound silly and possibly extreme, but I am of the opinion that once a person hands you money, they own your creative vision. It becomes all about the clients’ wants and needs and I want it to be all about me! I am perfectly fine with no deadlines, no do-overs, no unsatisfied clients and no stress!

I know that there will probably be quite a few photographers reading this that support themselves and their families with the income that they derive from providing photographic services. It is not my intent to diminish what they do or suggest in any way that they pursue photography just for money. I have chosen to keep photography and retouching a hobby and not a career.

Retouching Info:
Many have asked if HDR is involved, but I do not incorporate HDR into my portraits. The dynamic range is brought out many ways, but the ‘Tonal Contrast’ filter in the Color Efex bundle by Nik Software does a great job. I also use Perfect Photo Effects by onOne Software and on every photo I process. I will experiment with a variety of their filters. Finally, I love the filters from Topaz and don't know what I'd do without them!

I get a few inquiries on how I retouch skin. First, I remove the imperfections with the healing brush. Then I will dodge the darker areas and pores and burn the lighter areas. Recently, I have begun experimenting with Imagenomics â˜Portraiture' plug-in for skin. With the right settings, I am able to get decent results, while still retaining the pore structure. But my "go-to" skin retouching technique comes from retoucher Natalia Taffarel. On average, a portrait takes me about 10 hours to complete, but a lot of that time is devoted to trying out new techniques and experimenting. I work at a high resolution, but because I only display my images on the web and have never printed any, a lot of that detail is wasted.

I wish there was an easy answer to the questions I receive regarding my retouching techniques. Learning Photoshop for me has been painfully difficult and tedious to say the least. I want to throw in the towel on a regular basis (almost every photo). Unfortunately, there is no magic button. But with hard work, patience and perseverance, it is possible to realize your personal or professional goals.

The most important piece of advice I can offer is to impress yourself and stay true to your own vision. Don't worry what THEY think!

I have a long way to go in defining my style and still rely heavily on my heroes for inspiration. Here are some links that I hope you will find useful:


Calvin Hollywood – German digital artist and photographer
I first discovered Calvin when he appeared as a guest poster on Scott Kelby’s Blog.
His English DVD training ‘Calvinize’ is amazing and I credit a lot of my techniques to him. He includes the skin retouching technique learned from Natalia Taffarel in this â˜Calvinize' training. You can also find his classes offered on Kelby Training as well as his YouTube Channel. Most of his videos on YouTube are in German, but there are some in English as well, and they are worth seeking out!

â˜Calvinize'

Guest Blog Post on Scott Kelby's â˜Photoshop Insider'

Calvin Hollywood Photoshop Tutorial Part 1 (YouTube)

Calvin Hollywood Photoshop Tutorial Part 2 (YouTube)

Calvin Hollywood Photoshop Tutorial Part 3 (YouTube)

Calvin Hollywood Photoshop Tutorial Part 4 (YouTube)


Joel Grimes
I love Joel Grimes. I devour every word that comes from his mouth. He is such an inspiration and is so generous with his knowledge. [Framed] Network teamed up with Joel and aired weekly videos on the lighting set ups Joel uses to attain his images. There is so much information packed into those 20 minute videos. Joel also has classes offered on Kelby Training and amazing videos on YouTube.

â˜Lit Up' on the [Framed Network]

Joel Grimes – BEHIND THE SCENES – Dorion

Joel Grimes – BEHIND THE SCENES – Hope Solo

Joel Grimes – BEHIND THE SCENES – Lauren

Joel Grimes – BEHIND THE SCENES – Aimee


Peter Hurley
You have to experience Peter in action to truly appreciate him and what he has to offer. He will drill home the importance of interacting with the person in front of your camera and he is a true master, so you learn from the best. I love this guy and you will, too!

â˜Art Behind The Headshot' Trailer

Guest Blog Post on Scott Kelby's â˜Photoshop Insider'


Natalia Taffarel – High end digital retoucher from Argentina
A real pro. I have her DVD, it's 11.5 hours of advanced beauty retouching techniques. A little over my head, but worth it for the stuff that's not. This is where I learned how to retouch skin. Her technique is awesome, especially at retaining pore structure.

â˜Beauty and Hair Retouching High End Techniques' DVD


Sue Bryce
What can I say about Sue Bryce. Watch her on CreativeLIVE and see for yourself. A master at posing, she transforms average Janes into supermodels before your eyes, with just a simple pose. If only I could remember to apply a fraction of the advice I've learned from her…

â˜Glamour Photography' Course on CreativeLIVE

â˜Inside The Glamour Studio' Course on CreativeLIVE


Amy Dresser
An amazing digital retoucher, famous for her retouching on images by Jill Greenberg. I learned quite a bit from watching her â˜Pointy Man' tutorial on RetouchPRO. Worth the $15.00 if you have 2.5 hrs. to spend in front of the computer. You only have 3 days to watch it before it expires. Covers her â˜Carve' technique that is a big part of her style.

Amy Dresser Rentals Page on RetouchPro
Amy Dresser's retouching on Jill Greenbergs' images


Scott Kelby, whom I have learned so much from over the years. He has generously offered so much of his knowledge, in the form of books, tutorials, workshops, seminars, etc. If you've never been to Photoshop World, I can't recommend it highly enough. It was there that I won that contest, sponsored by Westcott, that got me started in Portraiture.

Thank you, Scott!


My sincerest thanks to all those who have generously offered their time and energy to assist me in my endeavor to improve my skills, especially my husband, Fred.

You can see more of Regina’s work and follow her here:

Flickr
Portfolio Website
500px
Google+
NAPP
Pinterest

15% Off Kelby Training Books and DVDs
Starting today, you can get 15% off all books and DVDs at the Kelby Training Store! All you have to do is use the promo code 15KTB for books or 15KTD for DVDs when you check out. And if you’re buying a book/DVD bundle, either code will work.

This sale goes till January 1, so start your holiday shopping early to make sure your favorite people get that book or DVD they’ve had their eye on :-)

We’re giving away a free book and DVD of your choice, so leave a comment for your chance to win!

50% Off Kelby Training Apps
Not only are our books and DVDs on sale, but so are our apps! For a limited time, you can grab Kelby Training Apps for 50% off. That’s a full class from one of your favorite instructors for just $4.99!

We have two free download codes each for the Lightroom 4 Crash Course and Photoshop CS6 Crash Course apps. Leave a comment for your chance to win!

Kelby Training Live
Photoshop CS6 for Photographers
10/19 - Chicago, IL (with RC Concepcion)
10/29 - Washington, DC (with Scott Kelby)

One Light, Two Light with Joe McNally
11/2 - Philadelphia, PA
11/5 - Tampa, FL

Leave a comment for your chance to win a ticket to one of these seminars!

Worldwide Photo Walk
Just a reminder for everyone who participated in the Worldwide Photo Walk this past Saturday… The last day to submit your best photo to the competition is Monday, October 22. If you haven’t already submitted your photo, make sure you do it soon! All you have to do is go to WorldwidePhotoWalk.com, log in, go to your Photo Walk page, and upload your photo. RC Concepcion even put together a quick video showing how to do it.

And why wouldn’t you submit a photo? You have nothing to lose, but a chance to win some really cool prizes!

Mpix Tap To Print App
Our friends over at Mpix have just released their FREE Tap To Print iOS app! With this app, you can order 4×6 and 5×7 prints from Mpix straight from your iPhone or iPad! You know all those pictures on your phone are just screaming to get out and be put on display for all to see. So take a few minutes to download the app and get prints of those works of art :-)

Food Photography & Secrets of Great Portrait Photography
Our friends over at New Riders Publishing have just released two great new books: Food Photography & Lighting from Teri Campbell, and Secrets of Great Portrait Photography from Brian Smith!

Lucky for you, we have one copy of each to give away, so leave a comment for your chance to win.

Winners
One Light, Two Light Seminar
- Dee Francis

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers Seminar
– Mike Barber

That’s it for today. Have a great Thursday!

How to Really Learn Video

Rob Adams – "Forget about audioâ¦."

Random Photographer - "Okay. Wait, what?"

Rob Adams - "You're not good enough for audio yet."

Random Photographer - *blinks*

I don't pull punches. This is what I tell every photographer venturing into the arena of HDSLR video for the first time. I also tell this to photographers who have been shooting (messing around) with their video functions for some time now. Why? Well, imagine WPPI, Imaging USA, After Dark, PDN and InFocus. These are all conventions dealing with photography, or nowadays imaging to be more precise.

Now imagine just about the same amount of conventions that are similar in size and attendance and that are geared towards only audio. That's why.

Audio is its own beast and it's the mitigating factor as to why I hear so many photographers say "I want to shoot video, but I just can't get the audio to sound any good. I just gave up on it."  This is not uncommon. It's a hurdle and it can suck the passion right out of you. It's not necessary to focus on audio when learning to shoot quality video. But you will get there.

You are image artists. Stick with that for now. Audio will come in time once you've mastered the basics of video. It will come when you are no longer staring at your 27" screen wondering why the heck your video looks so bad.

Want to start shooting video? Good video? Here's what you do:

Turn off the audio (for the time-being).

It's a distraction and will only frustrate you. If you can tell your story visually, you're on the right track.

Stabilize.

Do NOT try to hand hold your camera like a news cameraman. It may look cool in Breaking Bad, but shaky footage is not professional when trying to please your wedding or portrait clients. They expect your photos to look clean and polished and so should your video. Get this monopod.

Yes, that one exactly.  It's industry standard and the best in the world use it. You won't find a better one cheaper and the more expensive ones are just not necessary. This is perfect for shooting high-quality, steady video. It comes with a quick release plate that you keep on your camera for fast, easy mounting.

Shoot SHORT clips.

Rolling on something for more than 10 seconds is only going to frustrate you in the editing process. If you are trying to capture an entire wedding ceremony, you are probably biting off more than you can chew at this stage in your video education. That's also a common problem. Trying to take on too much too soon.

When you first started photographing did you immediately start shooting weddings by yourself without watching someone do it first? Perhaps you were a second shooter or an apprentice for a while. If you answered "yes," I'm pretty certain you made some big mistakes and lost some sleep or hair over it. Maybe both. Keep your clips short and simple. Period.

For goodness sake, don't zoom.

Let me ask you this: When was the last time your eye zoomed? It doesn't. It's not natural. Zooming is for 90's wedding video (although I see it far too often today) and it is a telltale sign of amateur video. It's the equivalent of using a pop-up flash for professional portraits. You just don't do it. When you see the camera moving towards or away from something in a movie it's called a "truck." It's when the camera and the lens move together relative to a subject on a Z-axis. It mimics the natural movement of your body in any one direction. Your eyeball doesn't have glass elements that magnify light to make an object appear closer and with video, the lens should mimic the eye.

Don't move the camera, yet.

Random Photographer – "But Rob, isn't that what shooting video is all about?  Movement?"

Rob - "No.  It's about storytelling"

Watch movies. Unless it's some wild chase, a fight scene or some dialogue where the director is intentionally trying to impart a sense of drama on the viewer, camera movements are almost ALWAYS purposeful and controlled. Those camera operators on shows like Breaking Bad and The Wire didn't shake because they were bad shooters. They meant to do that. This observation is especially prevalent in many romantic movies or romantic comedies. These types of films tend to be what our wedding films mimic the most.

Study the way the camera moves the next time you watch a chick-flick. From establishing shots to over-the-shoulder dialogue, street walking and car-scenes the camera doesn't move unless it's stabilized on some sort of motion control device. I just ruined movie watching for you forever. Welcome to my world.

Let the subjects be your "motion."

So now that you have your camera steady and still the movement should come from what you are filming.  Filming people standing in front of a camera taking a portrait is boring.  Have them do something to make motion.  It's as simple as that.  Then creatively, the sky is the limit.   Sometimes the sky is no limit at all.  Take the Mars rover for example.  It shoots video.

Pre-Focus.

One of the hardest things to do while shooting video with a large format sensor camera like a DSLR is to follow-focus. This means trying to keep a subject in focus as they move around, especially if your aperture is set to f/2.0 or some other shallow depth-of-field. Sure, f/2.0 looks great, but it's going to take much practice and great damage to your vision trying to follow-focus on that tiny LCD screen. Instead, pre-focus. It's the same as capturing a bride walking down the aisle in the good old days of film. You'd expose at f/8.0 somewhere on the aisle and when the bride walked into that areaâ¦pop. Try that with video. It's actually pretty cool looking when something or someone moves into your focus range. Just make sure you are rolling before the subject hits the focused area.

Don't change exposure while filming.

This will create a great deal of frustration when editing. If your light changes and blows out a dress or a skin stop filming, change the exposure, and resume. Trying to edit around exposure clicks in video can be a real challenge for a beginner. It looks unprofessional and amateur if they are left in there too.

Keep your aperture deep, for now.

Shooting video will be far less frustrating when you look at it later and it's not completely out of focus. What you see on that 3" LCD screen is NOT representative of what you are actually filming focus-wise. You'll understand this the second you look at your video clip full-size on your monitor later on. Trying to shoot subjects far away at f/2.0 is not easy, or wise.  Especially when they are moving.

Keep your depth-of-field deep for long shots (f/8 or higher) and shallower (around f/4) for tighter, more intimate shots. I know that shallow apertures look amazing, but think of it like choosing the right golf club for the situation. Beginning video shooters shouldn't stop down below f/3.5â¦ever.  Trust me, it will build your confidence seeing shots that are in focus when viewed at full resolution and then you can build upon your shallow-depth-of-field shooting skill from there.

So turn off your audio and try these simple techniques. Practice makes better. Even the best cinematographers in the world have been chasing perfection for decades. Continued improvement is what keeps filmmaking fun.

Random Photographer - "So what can I do with video clips that don't have audio?"

Rob Adams - "Good question."

How about making a fusion slideshow? I bet there aren't many photographers in your market doing them. It will set you apart, especially when you get good at it. Using web-based Animoto makes it easy. Or, how about having your subject(s) talk for a bit "on mic" about something or each other (if it's a couple?). It doesn't take much to add that in with music after, but that's another article for a later time. With either of these you can also offer a "movie poster."  My clients freak over them and you can use one of your awesome photos with my pre-made movie poster template packs.

What you should know is that you already understand a great deal about being a good cinematographer. The lighting principles are basically the same, composition still rests on the rule-of-thirds and shutter speed relates directly to blur and crispness. They are all variables. It's how you equate them that will determine the desired look.

Below is one of the film trailers that I show to the many photographers that I teach. Notice the camera movements, the audio, and the storytelling. That's my goal when I shoot and edit. Polished=professional.  Before you watch it mute the audio. Can you still follow the story?  That's the idea.

http://vimeo.com/28694195
(You can watch full-screen HD here)

Rob Adams is a New York City area based wedding filmmaker with more than 15 years experience in the wedding industry.  Rob speaks all over the world on cinema techniques and holds workshops regularly.  Rob's next appearance will be at PDN in New York City on October 25th.  Rob is also holding a comprehensive wedding cinema workshop on November 6th in the New York City area.

To view more of Rob's short videos and trailers visit RobAdamsFilms.com

To purchase a DVD of Rob's full length feature wedding films click here.

Rob is holding a comprehensive Wedding Cinema Workshop on November 6th in the New York City area.

Rob and his wife (photographer Vanessa Joy) will also be holding a Photo/Video Fusion Workshop on November 7th in the New York City area.

http://youtu.be/me24UQd8nu0

Making Great Photos in Bad Weather
Coming very soon to KelbyTraining.com is the latest class from Joe McNally, Making Great Photos in Bad Weather! How often do you plan on doing a location shoot, only to look outside and realize how crappy the weather is? Luckily, Joe’s here to share his years of experience and wisdom with us so we can keep shooting and make great images anyway!

When I first started working with Joe, he created a picture that, to anyone who wasn’t there, looked like it was lit by the sun pouring in through a window just out of frame. Only thing was, it was pouring cats and dogs outside. That was the first time I realized how easy it really is to get the picture you want, despite the fact that mother nature isn’t cooperating.

So, keep an eye on KelbyTraining.com early next week to catch this class as soon as it goes up!

Worldwide Photo Walk
We’re just two days away from Scott Kelby’s Fifth Annual Worldwide Photo Walk! There are over 30,000 people signed up to be a part of this great experience that brings photographers around the world together on Saturday. We hope you’ll help us keep spreading the word to all your friends, family, and fellow photographers. You can still grab some graphics to use online right here, and look back at yesterday’s posts to get info on using Google+!

Kelby Training Live
Here are the upcoming dates for Kelby Training Live seminars: 

One Light, Two Light with Joe McNally
10/12 – Lansing, MI
11/2 - Philadelphia, PA
11/5 - Tampa, FL

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers
10/17 - Minneapolis, MN (with RC Concepcion)
10/19 - Chicago, IL (with RC Concepcion)
10/29 - Washington, DC (with Scott Kelby)

Leave a comment for your chance to win a ticket to one of these seminars!

The Grid
On yesterday’s episode of The Grid, RC Concepcion and Pete Collins discussed Conflict in Photography. They covered a lot of ground regarding dealing with clients, using contracts, getting payment, and plenty more. There were also a ton of great comments and pieces of advice from viewers!

The episode will be up sometime today on KelbyTV.com and YouTube, so check on those channels throughout the day!

Win OnOne’s Perfect Photo Suite from NAPP Member UK!
Dave Clayton over at NAPP Member UK is teaming up with OnOne Software to give away a copy of the OnOne Perfect Photo Suite 6, along with an upgrade to Suite 7 when it’s released! All the info on the prize and what you have to do for a chance to win are at NAPPMember.co.uk

Winners
1-Month Kelby Training Subscription
– Jeff Rease

One Light, Two Light Seminar
– Chris

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers Seminar
– Chance Hammock

We’ll be in touch soon regarding your prizes.

That’s it for today. Have a great week, and see you Saturday for the Worldwide Photo Walk!

Hey everyone, Brad Moore here with a couple of quick updates on the contest and social aspects of the Worldwide Photo Walk. A lot of people have asked about submitting photos to the contest and sharing them online. If you just want the deadline dates, you can see the full schedule here. If you want a bit more info on how everything is happening, here’s the rundown of how we’re doing everything this year…

Walker Photo Contest
Each walker will be able to submit their one best photo taken during the Photo Walk to the contest. After your walk on October 13, you’ll go to the Photo Walk website and log in, then go to your Walk Page. There you’ll see where you can upload your image to the contest. We recommend the photos be no larger than 1MB in size.

You’ll have until October 22 to submit your image to the contest. You are not required to submit anything to the contest if you don’t want to. But, if you do, you’ll have a shot at winning some pretty awesome prizes!

Leaders will then have until October 29 to pick the best photo from their walk. From all of those photos, Scott Kelby will choose the Top Ten Finalists and one Grand Prize winner to be announced on November 9 . Those photos will also be voted on from November 9 – November 16 for the People’s Choice Award!

If you have questions about copyright and usage rights, you can get the full skinny on all that right here. The short version is, you agree to let us use your image to help promote next year’s Photo Walk. We don’t sell the images or claim any ownership of them.

If you want info on using Google+ for the social aspect of the Photo Walk, keep reading on the next post!

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