Posts By Scott Kelby

It's here: the Photoshop World Conference & Expo kicks off today with the pre-conference workshops; the parties start tonight, and tomorrow we're live-streaming Adobe's keynote (here’s the link to watch live), so "it's on."

If you’re joining us in Vegas, here’s a few quick things to help you get the most of your experience:

Check in for registered participants will begin at 10:00am at the Registration Counter in the North Convention Center.

Workshop Details:

  • If you received your conference letter with badge, please bring it with you, plus any tickets you received at the time of registration.
  • Check in for your workshop also covers your official conference check in.
  • You will not be able to store any personal belongings in the workshop rooms.
  • Offsite workshop attendees can keep items on the bus at your own risk.
  • Some In-Depth Workshops require/suggest specific equipment. View your specific workshop times, instructor and details blow.

If this is your first time at Photoshop World, we have a special crash course just for you. Hosted by Larry Becker, this orientation is designed to make sure you get the most out of your experience. Free and open to all attendees.

If you received your conference letter with badge, please bring it with you, plus any tickets you received at the time of registration to help expedite your check in!

Badge Holder/Show Materials Check In:
There will be a separate check in for all attendees who received their letter/badge in the mail. Here you will have your badge scanned, receive your workbook* and show guide, plus additional conference materials.

Registration Counter:
If you did not receive your letter/badge in the mail, you'll need to check in at the registration counter. Here you'll be issued your badge, along with your workbook*, show guide and additional conference materials.

*Instructions for digital download of your workbook will be available at check in.

Get in on the action outside the classroom. At Photoshop World, you'll never be without somewhere to be, someone to meet and someplace to have fun.

Tuesday, August 11 | 9:00am-10:30am | Shorelines A
Featuring Scott Kelby and the Photoshop Guys, along with special guests from Adobe, this is the place to get the scoop on special announcements, presentations, news and so much more. Pro Pass and 5+ Alumni get advance entry, so be on the lookout for signs outside the room.

Thursday, August 13 2:30pm-3:30pm South Pacific E
Complete your Photoshop World experience with a final farewell filled with video highlights, last minute wisdoms, Guru Award and Hall of Fame winners, and a ton of cool giveaways and prizes from our sponsors and vendors.

Wednesday, August 12 10:00pm - 12:00am
Midnight Madness has become legendary. If you're one of the lucky ones to grab a free ticket, you're in for a spirited night full of surprises, laughter and fun. Tickets will be available at 7:30am on Wednesday in front of South Pacific D,F.

Wednesday, August 12 11:00am-4:00pm
New this year are four, live shooting opportunities. Build your portfolio with photo ops in Food Setup, Model Photography, Macro Station and a Wedding Shoot.

Tuesday, August 11 | 8:00pm-11:00pm | Shorelines A
After a jammed-packed first day, be sure to unwind with us at the official After Hours party! Your night will begin with dinner and dancing, then get ready to rock out live with Rebel Soul! Tickets are still available for purchase for this must-attend event.

There’s plenty of opportunity to make the most of your time at Photoshop World. Network amongst like-minded people, take advantage of beneficial services, and immerse yourself in all things creative.

EVENING PHOTO WALK: Monday | August 10 8:00pm

THE “MEET UP:” Monday August 10 | 9:00pm-11:00pm (in the lounge in the center of the Casino)


BIRDS OF A FEATHER NETWORKING: Tuesday, August 11 | 7:30pm

THE ART OF DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY panel: Wednesday, August 12 7:30pm-9:30pm

PORTFOLIO REVIEWS: Tuesday, August 11 | 1:30pm-4:30pm

The place to be for the latest product demos, bonus training, photo shoots and so much more from big industry players like Adobe, Canon, SmugMug, Westcott and more!

Expo Hall Hours:
Tuesday, August 11th | 12:00pm - 6:00pm
Wednesday, August 12th | 11:00 am- 5:00pm
Thursday, August 13th | 9:00am - 1:00pm

You'll never be without the information you need with our official conference app! Be sure to download to help keep you in the know for all conference activities.

We love when you share! Plus you could win some awesome prizes. Make sure you follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook! Don't forget to use #PSW2015

Tomorrow here on the blog we'll be sharing Photoshop World photos, the Live Keynote stream links (you can register now – it’s free), and other conference fun stuff, so check back here to stay on top of the action. :)

Cheers everybody and Viva Las Vegas!


If I had a cool technique to show you, but it has a lot of steps, would you do it if:

(a) You kew up front that it’s super easy to do. Anyone can do this.
(b) You’ll learn some really helpful stuff, and shortcuts, just by doing it even once.

OK, are you in?
Remember â” it’s not hard at all. It’s simple. It just takes a bunch of steps, but I promise you’ll enjoy it (and it’ll be worth it).

OK, so I’m in the Atlanta airport a few weeks ago and I keep seeing this ad campaign for Microsoft Cloud, so I snapped this pic of it (above).  While my photo of it is kinda lame (snapped at the last minute on a moving escalator with my cell phone), I think the effect is pretty cool, and it’s pretty simple to do in Photoshop. It does take a few steps, but they’re all super-easy, so I thought today I’d make it my “Photoshop Down & Dirty Trick” to inspire you into the weekend (and to inspire the thousands of folks heading out to the Photoshop World Conference & Expo in Vegas next week). Here goes:

If you look at the airport sign image at the top, you see it’s one large main image surrounded by around 20 or so smaller images, so the first step is to gather 20 or so images (here I’ve grabbed 20 random shots from a trip a few years ago), and then them in a folder. Then create a new blank document at the size you want for your effect (I made mine 14″x10″ at 300ppi but you can choose any size you’d like). 

Now, go under the File menu, under Scripts and choose “Load Files into Stack.” This will let you choose all 20 images, and it will automatically bring them into your document, each on its own separate layer. When you choose “Load Files into Stack” it asks you which files you want to load; choose that folder of 20 or so images; select all 20 photos inside it, and click OK.

Now all your images will appear as layers in your document, but chances are they’ll be pretty large (in my case, they filled the entire screen). So, to get them much smaller in size (and to have them all the same small size), go to Layers panel; hold the Command-key (PC: Ctrl-key) and select all the layers. Now press Command-T (PC: Ctrl-T) to bring up the Free Transform control handles. Hold the Shift key (so it scales down in size proportionally); then grab a corner and drag inward to scale all 20 layers down at the same time, as if they were one unit (and as seen here). When it’s down to a similar size to what you see above, press the Return key (PC: Enter key) to lock in your transformation.


Now we’re going to arrange our 20 layers into kind of an oval shape (like you see above). You do this by getting the Move tool (press the letter “v”) holding the Command-key (PC: Ctrl-key), and then clicking on the image you see on screen. By holding the Command-key like this, it automatically selects that layer. Now just drag it into position around your imaginary oval. Then do the same thing to the next image down in the bottom left corner. It selects that layer, and then drag it into position. It’ll only take you about minute to do all 20 layers using this “point and click on the image to make its layer active” technique. When you’re done, it should pretty much look like what you see above.

In the Layers panel, scroll down to the bottom layer in your layer stack and click on the bottom layer to select it. Now hold the Command-key (PC: Ctrl-key), and click on the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel (as shown here), and it creates a new blank layer directly beneath your current layer (that’s what holding the Command-key does â” otherwise it would have created a new layer above your current layer). Now press the letter “d” on your keyboard to set your Foreground color to black. Now, to fill this new layer with black, press Option-Delete (PC: Alt-Backspace), so your image should look like it does here, with a black layer on the bottom, and all 20 image layers above.  OK, it’s taken a few steps to get there, but this is easy stuff, right? Right!

We’re going to make all that 20 layers black and white, all at once. First, in the Layers panel scroll to the top of the Layers stack and click on the top layer. Then go to the Adjustment Layer menu at the bottom of the Layers panel (it’s the fourth icon from the left â” it’s icon looks like half white/half gray circle), and choose Black & White. When you do this, it adds a Black & White Adjustment layer on top, and all the layers below it instantly turn black and white (as seen here).

Finally, we get to the fun stuff! Add a new blank layer at the top of the Layers stack (as seen above), and then switch to the Gradient Tool. When you have the Gradient tool, go up to the Options bar across the top and click on the tiny down-facing arrow to the right of the current gradient preview (near the top left of the bar). This brings up the Gradient Picker (seen here). Click on the Gradient that looks like a rainbow with red on either end (it’s called “Spectrum” as seen above).

Up in the Options Bar there are five gradient types. Click on the center one of the five (it’s called the “Angle Gradient); then click it in the center of your oval circle of photos and drag over to the left of your screen (as seen here) to add a spectrum gradient to your layer.

Now, at the top left of the Layers panel, change the Layer Blend mode from “Normal” to “Color” (as seen above), and now the color spectrum appears over your black & white images, but not the solid fill. That’s what I love about color mode â” you get all the color, but none of the fill. See you learned something handy to know right there.

STEP 10: 
We’re getting close but something’s still something missing â” the shadows around each photo. This is quick and easy.   Go to the fx menu at the bottom of the Layers panel (it’s the 2nd icon from the left), and from the list of Layers styles that appears, choose Outer Glow. When the Outer Glow window appears (a close-up is shown above), just change these settings: (1) Change the Blend mode to Normal. Set the Opacity of the glow to 75%. Click on the color swatch and choose Black as your glow color. Lastly, increase the size to around 100 pixels, and you’re done.

Above: see those building on the left. I applied the black outer glow to that photo. It looks like a drop shadow, but it’s on all sides, instead of just down and to the right like a standard drop shadow. 

STEP 11:
Now we’re going to copy that Outer Glow Layer Style from that layer, with those exact settings, and paste it onto all the other layers at once. Here’s how: start by right-clicking directly on the words “Outer Glow” that now appear just below your layers name, and the pop-up menu you see above appears. Choose Copy Layer Style (as shown here). Next, in the Layers panel; hold the Command-key (PC: Ctrl-key) and click on all the other layers to select them. Now right-click on any layer and from the pop-up menu that appears, choose “Paste Layer Style” to paste that Outer Glow effect to all 19 of your selected layers, all at once.

Above: Here’s what it should look like once you paste that Outer Glow Layer Style to all the other layers. OK, now we’re really close! 

STEP 12:
The final step is to open the image you want as your image image in the center (in this case, it’s a guitarist with a cigarette tucked into the headstock of his guitar), and copy and paste it into your document, and use Free Transform to size it down (as seen here). You’ll also want to copy and paste that Outer Glow Layer Style onto this layer, too (a shortcut is to hold the Option key on Mac / the Alt key on PC, and over in the Layers panel click on any one of the Outer Glow Layer Styles you’ve added and literally drag and drop a copy onto your new layer (holding the Option/Alt key like that makes a copy of what you drag). Lastly, to finish off this image, I went to the color gradient layer and lowered the opacity to 65% so the colors weren’t so vibrant.

OK, that’ it â” you did it. You made it. It took a few minutes, but it was all super easy, right? And, you hopefully picked up some cool techniques along the way (if you already knew all the techniques, that’s OK too â” you just learned a new special effect. One cool enough that Microsoft paid somebody do it over and over again in a whole series of ads).

Corey does this type of stuff all the time!
If you’re a KelbyOne member, you probably already know there’s a “Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks” column in each issue of Photoshop User magazine (the KelbyOne members’s print and/or digital magazine created just for members), and our own Corey Barker is always coming up with really cool stuff in that column, so make sure you check it out when you get your next issue.

I’m off to Photoshop World Vegas!
I’ve got a fashion shoot on a dry lake bed on Sunday in the 115-degree desert heat (it’s part of a class I’m doing on using the Elinchrom ELB 400 Pro Head Kit battery pack strobe kit on location), and then it’s PSW time! Hope to meet a whole bunch of you there!

Have a great weekend everybody!



P.S. If you’re going to Photoshop World Vegas, remember Canon is still running that special where if you buy a Canon DSLR (like a 7D Mark II, or a 5D Mark III, or a 6D), you get a year of the Adobe Creative Cloud Photographers Bundle (Lightroom cc and Photoshop CC), and a year of a bunch of our training on how to learn it all. Canon will be at the Expo, so stop by their booth, or go to this link with more details. See you there!


OK, I survived the Wedding shoot Saturday, but just barely thanks to all the record-breaking flooding we’re having here in Tampa. It kept us trapped indoors for the entire day (and all my bridal portraits were scheduled for outdoors. Ack!).

The event coordinator let us in an empty meeting room, and when I had the bride open the drapes, it faced directly into a rental car agency and a multi-level parking garage (see image below). LOL!

Solution? Over-expose by 3 stops!
That was what’s outside the window just completely blows out and turns to solid white. I’m not sure if I’ve ever shot 3-stops over-exposed (well, not on purpose, anyway).

Hero of the day? Auto ISO!
To take sure I never had to worry about my blurry pictures, I turned on Auto ISO and set my minimum shutter speed to 1/125 of a second (as seen above). That way, no matter what the lighting situation was where I was shooting that day (or night), my shutter speed would never fall below 1/125 of a second (it just raises the ISO until you get that shutter speed, which is why it’s important to have a camera that has low noise at high ISOs, and I brought my Canon 1D-x for that very reason.

> By the way, in a unrelated, but still kinda related thing since I just mentioned it â” I saw yesterday that B&H Photo had the lowest price I’ve ever seen on a 1Dx â” they had a $700 instant rebate bringing it down to $4,599. It’s not cheap, but I think it’s the best DSLR ever made. More details here (and now back to our story).

It especially works great at the reception where light is changing constantly, but even more than that, at just 1/125 of a second when you shoot people dancing you still get some movement from some of the dancers (some people are sharp, and some have motion blur all in the same shot, which makes it look like they’re dancing, rather than being just frozen in awkward positions).

More to share soon
I have a few more things to share from the day coming up, so stay tuned. In the meantime, I hope you’ll catch us on The Grid tomorrow at 4:00 pm ET (it’s our live weekly talk show for photographers) at this link. 



P.S. I’ll be in Vegas next week at the Photoshop World Conference & Expo. Did you know you can snag a FREE Expo-only pass (a $40 value, but thanks to our friends at B&H it’s free) so you can see all the latest gear direct from the vendors themselves, and catch some free classes in the expo floor theater and the Peachpit theater? Here’s the link to snag your free Expo-only pass for either next Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. See you there!

When I mentioned on Facebook I was shooting a wedding on Saturday, Jose Rodriguez (who follows me on FB and who had been to my original “Shoot like a Pro” seminar) wrote, “Don’t forget an iPad to take pictures of the rings” which brought a flurry of follow-up questions from photographers asking why.

Here’s why â” it makes a great surface to create reflections of the rings if a glossy black piano (my first choice) isn’t available. This is a trick I shared in my original Shoot Like a Pro seminar, and it was my wife Kalebra who came up with the idea when we were doing a shoot last year at the reception hall and couldn’t find a black piano.

Above: That’s me shooting a 100mm Macro using natural light to light the rings. By the way â” the iPad mini (shown here) is turned off to give a solid black background. 

So, the day after I post this tip on my Facebook page it’s Saturday and we’re in the middle of our wedding shoot, and it’s time to shoot the rings, and I realize that I left my iPad downstairs with all the gear (we’re up in the Bridal Suite), so I went with “Plan B” – I pulled out my iPhone 6+ and shot them right on its screen to get the reflection of the rings. It worked pretty darn well, but in the middle of the shoot my phone suddenly woke to a twitter notification (see the third pic below). LOL! :)

Above: here’s the rings from Saturday – I love the design of the groom’s ring. 

Above: The wireless trigger is still on there from shooting earlier – this was just window light.

If you’re wondering if I did thatâ¦
â¦classic shot where you lay the ring flat between the pages of a open bible and then fire a flash behind it at an angle so it makes heart shape shadow⦠wellâ¦yesâ¦yes I did! (and the bride absolutely loved it!). She liked it so much, in fact, I was tempted to do a selective color effect (but I restrained myself).

I wanted to share this with you all this morningâ¦
â¦in case you don’t follow me on Facebook or missed it there (the two posts really struck a chord with folks, getting 7,200 likes (that’s a LOT for my Facebook page), and 358 comments. I read every single comment, but what’s been really cool is how many people who literally tried the technique this weekend on their Wedding shoots, or they just tried it with their wedding rings now and posted examples. Some really great stuff, including my favorite taken outdoors, under a tree, on the hood of a Camaro by photographer Laura Beth Robinson. Lots of really great shots!

Anyway, hope you found it helpful, and here’s wishing you all a great Monday! :)



Some are calling it our best episode ever. I was getting texts during the first 20 minutes or so saying the same thing, but I have to tell you, the first 20 minutes area, well, I’m not sure what it was, but there was a lot of laughing (and dating tips). I think it must have been something in the water (or in Brad’s beard) that kind of took the train off the tracks for a while, but we eventually pulled it together and Roberto shared some really great stuff â” he was really awesome.

Our topic was based on my blog post from Monday called “If you were only allowed 10 pieces of photographic gear, what would it be?” (here’s the link), but when you watch “The Grid” (above), it’s helpful to know that eventually we do get to that topic, but there are lots ofâ¦umâ¦moments along the way. That’s all I’m sayin’. Hope you enjoy it.

Never fear!
While this episode won’t be entered into any competitions for educational content, Roberto was at our studios taping an inspirational class, and we’re working on some other projects coming up, so there’s lot of meaningful education happening under our roof, and of course, he’ll be with us at Photoshop World teaching live in just a few weeks.

Hope you all have a great weekend!



P.S. My wife Kalebra has been sharing some wonderful images and personal stories from our trip to Paris over on her blog. I particularly love her shot from the top of the Arc de Triomphe (wish I had taken it) and the one of our son you’ll see on her blog. Here’s the link if you’ve got a sec.

Hi Gang: The video above kind of explains what the book is about, but I thought I'd take 30-seconds to define both, so you know which one is for you (and, of course, I'm hoping one of them is for you. And your friends. And family. And strangers you meet on the street. Etc.).

My existing Lightroom Book for Digital Photographers
It's designed to teach you Lightroom from the ground up, and its focus is on workflow, and teaching you all the awesome stuff that Lightroom does so you can fall in love with it like about a bazillion photographers around the world already have. Here are the links to it on Barnes & Noble, Amazon, or from us at KelbyOne.

My New Lightroom Book
This one is a reference guide for people already up and running in Lightroom. You don't read it cover-to-cover (like the other book); instead, you just keep this one nearby and when you see something you don't know how to do (or wonder if Lightroom can even do it), you turn to the right chapter, and there's a quick, no-nonsense, straight-to-the-point description of how to do just that one thing. Here are the links to it on Barnes & Noble, Amazon, KelbyOne, or from Rocky Nook (this is my first book with them. I hope I don't blow it with the risky idea I'm about to unleash below).

On August 13th, we're trying something we've never done beforeâ¦
On that date, we're putting the entire book online (all 250+ pages), for free, with each page on its own page (just like the book), for a limited time. Why are we doing this? Because we're hoping you'll find it so useful, that you'll buy either the print book or the eBook. This is either going to work brilliantly, or it's going to be the shortest experiment in the history of book publishing. But we're going all-in on it, so we'll see what happens.

If you're a member of KelbyOne, you can download the eBook today for just $10. Ten bucks! That's insanely cheap (but that deal is only for KelbyOne members)! For everybody else, it's $235.00. Okay, it's not quite that expensive (but it certainly should be). ;-)  Here's the link for the member deal, and here’s the coupon code for non-members: Lightroomkelby.

Anyway, could you please take just a moment and watch the video where I explain it above (it's only around one minute long), and then go order the heck out of it (and if you could help me spread the word about this new book, and new concept, that would be especially helpful (and many thanks from me and the book team in advance).

Thanks for taking a moment to check this out, and I hope you all have a better than average Tuesday!


P.S. I'll be signing the print version at the Photoshop World Conference coming up in just a few weeks in Vegas. Hope I get to sign yours there.