Category Archives Photoshop

That’s right, we’re bringing my tour to Orlando, Florida in just 10-days from today (Friday, August 5th), and I really hope you can make it.

It’s just $99 for the full day (only $79 if you’re a NAPP member), and it’s 100% money back guaranteed if you’re not absolutely thrilled with the day.

Here’s the link for more details or to sign up. Hope to shake your hand in person in Orlando. :)

Hi Gang: I’m back from Banff, Calgary, Vancouver, and Saturday’s Grand Opening of Adobe’s “Photoshop & You” Pop-up Store in San Francisco. First, what is a “pop-up” store? Basically it’s a temporary store, like when a company takes over a retail space for a short period (think of a costume company who rents a vacant store in a mall a few weeks before Halloween to sell costumes, and when Halloween is over, they pack up the store). Photos by Brad Moore.

(Above: Here’s where you can buy Adobe logo stuff, t-shirts, books, prints, and other fun stuff).

Well, that’s what Adobe did at 550 Sutter Street in San Francisco when they created “Photoshop & You”—a brilliantly creative pop-up store in the heart of downtown. I thought it would be pretty cool because Adobe was doing it, but I gotta tell ya—Adobe did an absolutely amazing job with this store. Hands down one of the most creative, fun, and immersive things Adobe has done (outside of making the software itself, of course). Here’s a link to Adobe’s press release which explains the whole thing, and lists who’s speaking there, too!

Opening Day!
I was truly honored that Adobe asked me to be their presenter on opening day, and I did three sessions; two custom-designed Light it, Shoot it, Retouch It sessions, and then a live audience “Candid Frame” podcast interview with photography author and instructor Ibarionex Perello. I was thrilled to hear all three sessions were sold out in advance, and I had some really fantastic folks attend my sessions which really made it a lot of fun for me. So, today I wanted to share a few pictures and some stories from this exciting opening day:

(Above: We had a bride for our first shoot, complete with wedding gown and bouquet, and we looked at different one-light scenarios for shooting formal portraits using the newWestcott Spiderlite TD-6 continuous light).

Creating a Custom Version of My Tour
When Adobe asked me to do this, I wanted to come up with something special, and because it would be a more intimate setting, with seating for only 80 for each session, I wanted to use Westcott’s new Spiderlite TD-6s, which are continuous lights, which meant after I did my initial teaching, and shooting, I could then reset the lights and let the audience shoot the two live models we had so they could not only try the lights out themselves (without having to worry about tiggering flashes or 80 people trying to share a wireless transmitter), but then they would have the raw images to practice the retouching I was teaching.

(Above: Here we’re doing a profile silhouette and the audience gets a chance to shoot, too!)

Westcott won a lot of new fans that day, as people were totally digging the TD-6s. I had so many questions from people about the lights, which softboxes to get, how many, and so on. They were a huge hit.

(Above: for our second shoot, we did a lifestyle look, then we added a second light to do some compositing onto different backgrounds).

I structured the two-hour sessions so I would start with explaining the lighting, and how to use just one softbox for different looks, then we’d do the shoot, then I’d let the audience shoot, then I do the retouch on two huge LCD screens.

(Above: I reset the lights on a runway in front of the stage so the audience could shoot as well, and everybody did a great job of letting each other shoot from different angles).

Everybody had a ball, and the best part of it was—-Adobe picked up the tab for everybody—-all the sessions were free! Plus, Adobe gave away some truly amazing prizes to the crowd including iPads, copies of CS5, and even a Leica camera.

Interviewed in front of a live audience
Doing a podcast interview in front of a live audience is definitely different, but the host Ibarionex Perello asked really intriguing questions—-much different than the usual, “What’s your favorite lens” or “Which plug-in do you use the most” type of questions, which made the time just fly by. We talked a lot about the business side of things, and I got to talk about topics I normally don’t get to disucss, so it really was a lot of fun (even though my brain hurt when it was done). The Podcast will air in a few weeks, and I’ll be sure to share the link when it goes live).

(Above: They had a wall with these huge video screens showcasing the work of the presenters, and other Photoshop artists. People were mesmerized with this wall—-and with good reason).

The Store Itself
The store is only open for the next two weeks, but if you’re anywhere near San Francisco, you’ve got to make a trip it to see it. You walk in the front door, and you just go “Wow—this is cool!” They had work stations set-up with Lightroom and Photoshop, and they Russell Brown’s Extreme Imaging Lab in the back where you can could create custom t-shirts and other creative fun stuff; plus they had photography (and even a photo gear mini-museum) everywhere so you really felt like it was part gallery, part museum, and part store (they even sold cool Photoshop t-shirts, books, and even Photoshop itself).

(Above: it looks like a pano frame on the wall, but each of those images is displayed on an iPad. You could walk up to the frame, and flick through different images, pinch in to zoom, and so on. Really very clever, and people were loving it).

This really has nothing to do with anything, but afterward our buddy Mike Wiacek and his lovely wife Sarah took Brad and I out to the best pizza I have ever had. A up-scale restaurant called  “Tony’s Pizza Napoletana” in the North Beach area, owned by a friend of Mike’s who is a famous pizza chef, and it was just out-of-this-world. Never had anything like it!

The iPhone photo above is the pizza that Brad ordered (not realizing it was for three or four people), and it was so large I had to have Mike put his head in the shot so I’d have a frame of reference (we already had three other small pizzas before this one arrived). Needless to say, Brad took most of it home in a to-go box which every TSA agent at SFO wanted to confiscate for “further testing.” ;-)

You’ve Gotta Get To The Store
There are free presentations every day at the Photoshop & You Store (here’s the schedule), and they have presentations from people like Photoshop Hall of Famer Bert Monroy (who’s back-lit Photoshop-created illustration of Times Square  is on display there), to our buddy and prolific photography book author Jeff Revell.

(Above: Here’s a shot of Bert’s famous “Time’s Square” backlit illustration. The store was packed all day, and you could always find people looking up close at all the amazing detail in this huge pano).

I hope we see Adobe “popping up” more of these stores in different cities around the world, because I think it connects people with the artistic and photographic side of Photoshop in a very unique and creative way. Plus, I think it’s just a very cool thing for Adobe to do to connect with their users, as they had Photoshop team members, engineers, and product managers there answering questions, doing demos, and just meeting the people they do it all for, and I thought that was particularly cool.

(Above: A look into the Amazing Dr. Brown’s world. Russell always comes up with such creative ways to use Photoshop, and his lab continues that tradition in a big way. I also got to meet Russell’s 16-year-old son, who was working in the lab, and he was a truly delightful young man, and Russell has every reason to be as proud a dad as he is). :)

Where to Next?
Thanks to Adobe for having me there—it truly was a blast, and thanks to everyone who came out for my first “hands-on”Light it, Shoot It, Retouching It, mini-workshop. I’ll be doing the full-day version of this workshop this Friday at Dave Cross’s studio in Tampa (here’s the link if you want one of the last few seats), and I’ll be in San Francisco live doing my full “Light It, Shoot It, Retouch It” Tour on Monday, November 14th (you can sign up for that right here).

P.S. My Video of the Store
I shot a short video walk-through of the store with my iPhone, but I need to add some narration, so I’ll run that tomorrow here on the blog, so check back then to give it a look. Have a great Monday everybody!

Adobe is doing something very creative and fun; for two solid weeks they’re taking over a store at 550 Sutter Street in downtown San Francisco to create a really unique, immersive, and imaginative Photoshop experience. It’s a place where you interact, create, experiment and learn each day from a collection of authors, artists and instructors, and I’m very honored to be one of ones kicking off the opening weekend.

in the planning stages, the folks at Adobe asked me what I wanted do, and I said I wanted to keep with their theme and do a special custom class based upon (but the not the same as) my “Light It, Shoot It, Retouch It” seminar. But to take things up a notch, I wanted to use continuous lighting for the class, so that after I set up the shoot, I could have the audience shoot our live models too.

One Call Does it All!
After a call from Adobe to our friends at FJ Westcott (so I could get to use some of their spiffy new SpiderLite TD-6s and a softbox or two), we’ve got my special two-hour class all set-up and best of all—-the classes are FREE!!!! (though of course seating is limited).

Two Lighing/Retouching Sessions This Saturday
I’m doing two identical sessions this coming Saturday:

(1) 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

(2) 3:00 to 5:00 pm

(3) I’m doing a live interview in the Photoshop Store on “The Candid Frame” (a podcast about photography and photographers) with host Ibarionex Perello

I am just super excited to be even a small part of Adobe’s very creative and fun community event.

For more details, visit Adobe’s Photoshop Pop-Up Store page right here (they’re planning a on-going live in-store lab, various Photo Walks, and lots of cool stuff throughout the two week run). I hope we’ll get to learn and shoot together on Saturday in Downtown San Francisco (did I mention it’s free? Well, it is).

Also, if you can’t make my sessions, they’ll be having different presenters for the entire two-weeks, so make sure you check out the full schedule.

Hope I see you there! :)

Hey everyone, Matt Kloskowski here again. Thanks once again to Scott, for giving me his blog for the day. I’ve had a topic I’ve been wanting to write about for a while, so here goes: How Photoshop changed my Photography. It’s not what you think though. I’ve heard plenty of stories of how Photoshop is a game changer because of the ways that we can now enhance our photos so quickly. We can make blue skies bluer, green grass greener, remove blemishes, clone out wires, etc… But my photography-life-changing experience is a little different.

I Started with Landscape and Travel Photography
See, I started with landscape and travel photography. That was my favorite. Landscape and travel is what got me excited about taking my camera out of my bag. I sound like a total dork, but I’d have a hard time sleeping the night before I was going someplace cool to shoot. I steadily picked off some must-see places that I had always wanted to photograph. To this day, I still love landscapes. They don’t talk back, I love the peaceful feeling I get when I’m standing in front of a beautiful place like Mesa Arch, Moraine Lake, or Multnomah Falls and soaking it all in.

While teaching in Dubai, I spent some time at the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. Words can’t describe what a beautiful, pristine, quiet and inspiring place this was to photograph.

Switching to Portraits
I slowly started to make the move to portraits. A friend asked if I’d take some photos of his family. Then a friend of his friend asked the same thing when they saw the photos. And it grew. Before long, I found myself shooting a number of family portraits. To this day, I still love to capture family moments.

I also found I really enjoyed it. Especially when kids were involved. The kid in me really liked the challenge of getting them to smile and laugh. And I guess (because of the age that I must act), I really seemed to make a connection with the kids I was photographing :-) That eventually led to me doing some studio and lighting work too. But something was missing for me. Believe it or not, it was the art of post processing. I’m a Photoshop Guy and I’ve chosen this as my career because that’s what I love to do. I realized that the deeper I got into portrait photography (while artistic in it’s own way), the further away I got from being artistic with Photoshop.

Something Changed
A couple of years ago I saw a cool ad for Mountain Dew. It incorporated a skateboarder with motion graphics. I thought it looked so cool so I sat down one night and created this composite. I was hooked.

It hit me like a bag of bricks. Bam! I immediately realized, compositing is what I want to do more of. But that was just the beginning. I knew right away that this would change the Photoshop side of my life. But what I didn’t realize, is how it would change the photography side of my life.

Will You Get to the “How” Already?!
See, as I got more and more into compositing, the entire world became fair game for compositing/photography opportunities. The more Photoshop work I did, the more I realized that sure, I can create smoke in Photoshop, but it never looks as real as the real thing. Not to mention, it’s too time consuming. So I’d rather shoot a photo of smoke and drop it in. Sure, I can create dramatic clouds in Photoshop with brushes and filters and all, but it’s much easier to photograph dramatic clouds. Then I simply make a “Clouds” folder and put those photos in it, so I can find them when I need ’em.

Take Your Camera Everywhere!
I’ve often heard people say this. Honestly though, I was a total light snob. If the light wasn’t great, if I wasn’t in a studio, or if there wasn’t some kick ass scenery right in front of me, I didn’t bring my camera. I was so used to only pulling out my camera for beautiful landscapes or in the studio, that I let everything else pass me by. But now, anything is fair game. Alleys, fences, brick walls, empty parking garages, city skylines on bla hazy overcast days, garage doors, dogs, water fountains (because you never know when you need water coming out of a water gun), you name it.

Heck, I even take photos of cracks in the street because you never know where you’ll use them :)

My artistic side in Photoshop has caused a place for an entirely new world of photography opportunities to open up to me. I’d never put my tripod down in the middle of a tunnel to take a photo. I mean, why? It’s only a tunnel right? And it wasn’t even a good looking one to begin with. But when you add a motorcycle (that was lit in only the way you could light it in the studio) to the tunnel, now we’ve got something.

Now I get to put my passion for photography, my desire to create something, and my passion for Photoshop together. Not just sharpening and color correction. But really sitting down and being artistic, as I put a composite together. The light sources, the shadows, special effects, all that stuff. Things that we need to know about in photography I can now work with in Photoshop too. I love it!

So, have I stopped shooting landscapes?
Absolutely not! I still love shooting travel and landscape photos. In fact, if you walk through my house, that’s what I have on my walls. Personally, no matter what composites I create, no matter what portraits I’ve taken and no matter how much I may like the lighting on on one of my subjects, I’d have a hard time putting a photo of a person (who’s not closely related to me) on my walls at home. That’s just me though. But if it’s on my wall, it is either a spectacular place I’ve visited or a photo of my family. So landscapes will always hold a close place in my photography portfolio. But now, because of Photoshop, my camera gets used so much more.

Thanks again to Scott and everyone here for giving me a few minutes of your time today. I’m so passionate about this stuff that I actually just wrote a book called Photoshop Compositing Secrets (Amazon (link) | Barnes & Noble (link) | Kelby Training (link)). If any of this stuff sounds interesting to you, I hope you’ll check it out. Have a great weekend! :)

That’s right, baby! I’m going from up north to way down south, as my “Light it, Shoot it, Retouch it” live seminar tour comes to Orlando, Florida. Here’s the info:

  • Who: Me.
  • When: Friday, August 5th, 2011
  • Where: The Orange County Convention Center
  • Why: Why not? You’re 100% guaranteed to love it, or your money back.

It’s only $99 for the full-day workshop (Just $79 if you’re a NAPP member), and it comes with a detailed step-by-step workbook that follows right along with what I’m teaching during the day. It’s gonna be an awesome day of learning and fun, and I hope you’re there to be a part of it. See you in Orlando! (here’s the link).