Posts By Scott Kelby

Today is Labor Day in the United States, and our offices are closed, so we’re taking today off here at the blog but I’ll be back on here tomorrow.

By the way: I looked up Labor Day in WikiPedia, and here are a few interesting tidbits about this American Holiday:

Traditionally, Labor Day is celebrated by most Americans as the symbolic end of the summer. The holiday is often regarded as a day of rest and parties.

The first Labor Day in the United States was celebrated on September 5, 1882 in New York City.

In U.S. sports, Labor Day marks the beginning of the NFL and College football seasons.

(NOTE: My football shooting season has already started, as I shot the Bucs vs. Bengals and the Bucs vs. Browns NFL Preseason games already. Here’s some thumbnails from the Browns game, below).

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Have a great Labor Day today. Don’t forget to rest and party! :-)

Best,

-Scott

P.S. We have right around 650 Photo Walks organized around the world as part of my Worldwide Photo Walk. If you’re relaxing this Labor Day, why not click this link; type in the name of your city, and see if there’s a walk near you that you can join on Saturday, Oct. 3rd?

OK, you’ve gotta try this one, even if you don’t do type effects a lot, because it unlocks a little known Photoshop CC feature that is just awesome! Here goes:

STEP ONE: Start by choosing an Open Type font (here I’m using the Open Type font Bickham Script Pro, but you can use other Open Type fonts (look for the “O” symbol in front of the font’s name in the Font pop-down menu). So why the Open type fonts? Because they have really cool hidden stuff (more on that in the next stuff). For now, just type Pizzeria

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STEP TWO: To find the cool hidden stuff, go under the Type menu, under Panels, and choose Glyphs Panel (as shown here).

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Above: Here’s what the panel looks like — it shows you all the font’s symbols, special characters, and specially-designed beautiful extra versions of your capital letters and lower case letters, and you can use these to create instant logos that really have a unique look.

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Above: At the top of the panel is a list of all the different sets of characters that come with this particular font (and you can see there’s a bunch of ’em, like a whole set for Currency symbols, like the British Pound, The Euro, The Japanese Zen, etc.). But we’re going to use a special set of capital letters.

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STEP THREE: Highlight the “P” in Pizzeria (as shown here) and then choose Swash from the pop-up list of characters in the Glyphs panel (as seen here). You can see a preview of the some of the beautifully-designed alternate capital letters you can use. Now, take a look at the capital “P” that is the default “P”. It’s “OK” but it could be fantastic by choosing some of these Swash version (TIP: there’s a slider at the bottom of the panel that lets you choose the size of the thumbnail previews).

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STEP FOUR: Scroll down alphabetically to the letter “P” and double-click on the preview and it replaces your boring old capital P with the much fancier P you see here. Admittedly, I’m not crazy about this particular fancy “P” but luckily, it’s not are only choice.

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STEP FIVE: There’s another set of beautiful capital letters that take things up a notch. Highlight that capital P again; then from the pop-up menu at the top of the Glyphs panel, choose Stylistic Alternates; scroll down alphabetically to the letter “P” and double-click on the “P” there to get the gorgeous “P” you see here. How about that bad boy? Beautiful, right? Oh, but there’s more — let’s make the last letter in Pizzeria — the boring “a” into a more interesting “a.”

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STEP SIX: Highlight that ‘a’ at the end, and then scroll up to the Stylistic Alternate “a” and double-click on it. Look at that nice a now! (stop snickering). ;-)

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STEP SEVEN: We’re not done (still more cool stuff we haven’t uncovered), but let’s add a 2nd line of text; change your font to Trajan Pro (this font comes with Photoshop, too!) and type in the word Italiano. Change the color of Italiano to red; change the color of Pizzeria to green (highlight the text and choose the new color from the color swatch up in the Option bar at the top of the screen). OK, time for more fun stuff.

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STEP EIGHT: One of my favorite features of Open Type fonts is that many of them has a set of decorative ornaments, and Bickham Script Pro is no exception — choose Ornaments from the Glyphs panel’s pop-up menu; click the Type tool somewhere away from where your other text is located; then double-click on any one of the ornaments and it appears on screen. Here I clicked on a nice ornamental “swooshy thing” and then I dragged it up under the letter “P” like you see here. I clicked on a few different ones until I came up with this one that I thought fit pretty well, but there were LOTS of choices of different styles and shapes. OK, we’re almost done.

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STEP NINE: You’re about to learn a very handy selection trick, but to make a selection of just part of a Type layer, you have to convert it from a Type layer to a regular ol’ pixel layer. You do that by Right-clicking on the layer in the  Layers panel and from the pop-up menu that appears, choose Rasterize Type (as shown here). Now, you could grab the Eraser tool and just start erasing any part of that word Pizzeria you’d like (but don’t do that, because you’d miss the really handy selection tip I’m about to share.

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STEP 10: We’re going to make the dots in the dotted “i’s” red. Get the Rectangular Marquee tool; drag a selection around the dot over one of the eyes (as shown here).

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STEP 11: Switch to the Move tool; then press the Up Arrow key on your keyboard once, and then press the Down Arrow key once. This snaps the selection to the dot (as seen here). This is such a handy tip because it picks up every pixel (it does a much better job than the magic wand would have done. In fact, this technique will even pick up stuff like soft drop shadows behind layers, and basically anything and everything in that area. It works like a charm!) Now; set Red as your Foreground color then press Option-Delete (Windows: Alt-Backspace) to fill the dot with red like you see above.

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STEP 12: Here’s the finished logo with the red-dotted “i’s”

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Hope you found that helpful. :)

-Scott

P.S. OK, this is a little off-topic, but if you’re into Landscape photography, make sure you check out the new online class from landscape photographer Richard Bernabe — his class on landscape composition is getting rave reviews from KelbyOne members. Here’s the trailer (it’ll make you really want to watch the class, so here’s the direct link to the class itself. You can watch it for $20, then watch all the rest of our classes for a full 30-days. Can’t beat it). 

 

 

 

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It’s a huge event, held once every five years in New YorkParis, Tokyo and Shanghai and not only is it my first time attending, I’m actually teaching a session in the conference track, and get this — it’s not Photoshop, Lightroom or Photography related.

Canon asked if I might do a business class this time around, so I’m really excited to be doing a class next Thursday (a week from this Thursday), called “How to Present Like a Pro” where I’ll share my favorites tips and techniques for making presentations that rock.

But besides my class…
Everybody I’ve talked to about this tells me how huge this Expo is, and it covers everything Canon does, from film-making to photography to copiers to…well, Canon makes a lot of products covering a wide range of stuff, and I can’t wait to see it all, and you can too. Here’s the details:

When: September 10-11, 2015
Where: Javits Convention Center, NYC

Here’s the link for details and to register (you need this ACCESS CODE to register because this is an invite-only event, but don’t worry — this access code is your invite: IGKB4PPT).

Check out this video (below) – I found it on YouTube and it’s from the 2010 Paris Canon Expo – I can’t imagine what the one in NYC is going to be like. That’s some crazy stuff!!!  Looks like it’s going to be a blast!

https://youtu.be/hTTIeyzxTeQ

Hope I’ll see you there in person next week. It’s going to be (wait for it…wait for it…) epic!

Best,

-Scott

If you’ve been following me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, you’ve probably seen me posting some shots from a class I’ve been working on about my location lighting set-up. I had four different location shoots planned for the class (we wrapped up taping last week), but the day before Photoshop World we did the first shoot out on a dry lake bed just outside Vegas.

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Here’s one of the shots from the shoot. It’s lit with just one flash and it’s the replacement for what has been my go-to kit for years now — the Elinchrom Ranger Quadra — the new model is the ELB 400, and it’s got a slew of new features over the old kit (I go over all that stuff in the class, but mostly the class is about lighting tips and techniques and ideas for location lighting. The ELB is pretty awesome, though!). The dress is from DreamShootRentals.com

The softbox was my go-to softbox (been using this for years); it’s my Elinchrom Rotalux 53″ Midi Octa. I just love that softbox (and it’s not too crazy expensive for being fairly big — it’s $329 at B&H Photo).

TIP: August may not be the ideal time to shoot in the desert
I knew I’d already be there; my video crew would already be there for Photoshop World starting the next day; and Kalebra would be there with me to do the Art Direction (she rocks!), so I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to pull off a shoot like this. Ya know, except for the whole shooting in the desert in the August heat thing.

One thing that made it a bit complex is that we were kinda out in the middle of nowhere. We were going to need a restroom on the scene, and a place for the model to get hair/makeup and to change outfits. We had a large crew:  our video crew and producer (this is part of a KelbyOne class), Brad, my assistant Lynn and a second photo assistant. We had a location scout, and Kalebra and I working on the direction and shooting, so we wound up renting this production trailer, which is what they would normally use on a movie or TV production, but it worked out really well (as long as we didn’t run all four air conditioners, which would blow a fuse). Check out the video below for more on the production trailer.

https://youtu.be/jRpoFkwoWTU

Above: Here’s a little iPhone BTS video we shot so you could see the set-up, and we went in the production trailer for a quick tour, too. It’s pretty short. Worth checking out. 

 

Above: Here’s a gallery of some behind the scenes shots. Click to see a larger version. 

I can’t wait until the whole class is done
I really was able to cover a lot of stuff — four different shoots and an entire section just about the gear to start it all off. I’ll let you know as soon as it’s ready.

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Above: Here’s some thumbnails from some of the other finals from that shoot. More to share in the class. 

Hope you all have an awesome Monday (well, we can only try, right?), and we’ll see ya back here tomorrow. :)

Best,

-Scott

OK, it’s official – I’m making every Friday here on my blog, “Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks Friday” where I’ll share a simple, hopefully helpful, and certainly fun Photoshop special effect — the type of effects you see in ads, on the Web, in banners, etc.

This one I’m showing you today I especially like because I’m showing how I created a perspective text effect for the Facebook promos I did for my last seminar tour (my “Shoot like a Pro Tour”), but I’m using the date of the next stop in my “all new” tour (my “Reloaded!” seminar), so it’s both a Photoshop trick, and a subtle plug of my upcoming Phoenix live seminar stop on Tuesday, September 22nd (like the way I worked that in there?).

Anyway, here’s how it goes (and it uses a filter a lot of folks haven’t tried, the Vanishing Point filter, which is designed to do the math for you on creating perspective effects).

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STEP ONE: Open the image you want to add a perspective text effect to in Photoshop, like the road sign shown here (it’s a stock image – you can get one like this to practice on for a buck at dollarphotoclub.com).

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STEP TWO: Get the Type tool and create your type. In this case, I’m trying to make it look like a road sign so I used Helvetica Bold, and I left lots of leading between the lines like they do in real road signs.

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STEP THREE: Go to the Layers panel; hold the Command key on Mac (the Ctrl key on Windows), and click directly on the “T” thumbnail icon to put a selection around your type (as seen above). Now press Command-C (Windows: Ctrl-C)  to copy that selected text into memory. Now you can delete that Type layer by dragging it into the Trash can at the bottom of the Layers panel. You’ll want your perspective text to appear on its own layer, so add a new black layer above your sign layer, and then press Command-D (Windows: Ctrl-D) to Deselect your text.

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STEP FOUR: Go under the Filter menu and choose Vanishing Point to bring up the Vanishing Point window, seen above. Click on the 2nd tool from the top (it’s called the “Create Plane” tool). You’re going to click it once just inside each corner of the sign (it works kinda like the Polygonal Lasso does, but with a rubber-band effect, dragging out a straight line as you move your cursor. It just takes four-clicks — one in each corner until you create the full four-cornered shape, and it applies a blue grid like you see here, to let you know the shape you created worked. NOTE: If you see a yellow grid instead, that’s a warning that’s it’s probably not exactly right, so you might want to futz with it a bit, moving your cursor slightly one way or the other until it turns blue. It the grid turns red, and the grid disappears, so you just see the outside border, that’s letting you know that you’re way off, and it’s not going to work. But never fear, this filter helps you out pretty well and chances are you won’t have a problem.

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STEP FIVE: Press Command-V (Windows: Ctrl-V) to Paste your copied text into Vanishing Point. It’ll appear just floating there doing nothing special, up in the left corner, as seen here.

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STEP SIX: Click your cursor inside your text and drag it down over your grid and all of a sudden it just snaps into the grid with the proper perspective automatically applied, (as seen here). The text here is a little too big for the sign (it’s cutting off the bottom of the letters in the bottom row), but we can fix that easy enough in the next step.

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STEP SEVEN: Switch to the sixth tool down in the toolbar on the right — that’s the Transform tool (shown selected here). It kind of works like Free Transform, so hold the Shift key (to keep things proportional); grab a corner point and drag inward until the text fits on the size without any problem, as seen here. You can reposition your text anywhere within that grid (moving it up/down/left/right) using that same tool.  When it looks good to you, click the OK button in the top right corner, and it applies the perspective effect to your text, and renders it on that blank layer you created right before you open the Vanishing Point window.

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STEP EIGHT: Now you can see the text added to the sign with the proper perspective effect (the letters are larger on the left and get smaller as they move to the right side of the sign proportionally, like they would in real life). Lastly, we want the letter to not look so “Added after the fact” and a great, simple trick for that is simply to lower this layer’s opacity a bit so the letters look more like they’re on the sign (in real life, those letters wouldn’t be 100% solid white — the ink would have bled into the sign, and been washed out a bit by the sun), so I always lowered the Opacity for these signs to 83% (as seen here).

Now that you know this technique, on some level doesn’t it make you subconsciously want to come spend the day with me in just about three weeks learning some really cool, really intriguing, and really inspirational photography stuff? It does? Great! Then just follow this link to sign up and we’ll spend the whole day together on that Tuesday (I wish all my effects worked this well as a seminar promo). ;-)

Hope you all have a great weekend. I’m shooting the Bucs/Browns game tomorrow night (sad to hear Johnny Manziel probably won’t be taking any snaps due to soreness in his arm — I was hoping to get some “Johnny Football” shots). It’ll still be a blast, even shooting in the Florida heat (and it’s crazy hot here right now), but it’s still football, so I’ll be there with a big smile and a long lens or two). :)

Best,

-Scott

P.S. We just released my “Retouching Brides” online training class. If you shoot weddings, I think you’ll really find it helpful. You can watch it right now, online for just $19.95 – here’s the link –  and after you’re done, you can watch all my other classes too, because that $19.95 gets you a full month of unlimited access to the entire library of all our online photography, Photoshop, and Lightroom classes (not just my classes – all of ’em!). Just sayin’- that’s a pretty awesome deal. :)

 

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