Category Archives Photoshop


Happy Thursday everybody. I’m back from three-days in the Florida Keys as chaperone for my son’s school trip to “Sea Camp.” It was three solid days without my laptop, without meetings, without working. It was awesome!

OK, about this Thursday’s Embarrassing Photo: I really can’t explain it. I can’t explain our hair. Why we were dressed that way. Or how we got gigs, or dates, or paid our bills, etc. but somehow, we did. Hey, it was an 80s disco band. Not much was expected of us.

The band was called “7th Avenue,” named after Ybor City’s main drag–7th Ave. (From L to R: Drummer Randy Wheat, Bass Player Mark Southwick, Lead singer Chris Denham, Me [yes, I’m actually wearing a square-ended, knit tie from “Chess King.”], lead guitarist Tony Llanes [of Big Electric Cat fame], and lead vocalist and rhythm guitar player Jose Herrera). Now, once you stop giggling, we can move onto the news:

  • Tom Rocks The House!
    First, a big thanks to Tom Opasinski for his thought-provoking blog post yesterday, that had everybody talking. I thought his message was really insightful, and from reading your comments, you guys got a lot out of his article as well. Thanks for making him feel so at home here on the blog.
  • New Online Class from RC
    Kelby Training Online just released another online class from Web Guru RC Concepcion. This one’s called, “Dreamweaver CS4 for Beginners” and if you ever wanted to finally get up to speed with building Web sites from scratch, you definitely want to check out RC’s class. Here’s the link.

    Which Monitor Do You Use To Tether?
  • I have a question for you guys. You’ve probably heard about me shooting tethered directly into Lightroom on my laptop, but my question to you isn’t about shooting to a computer. Instead, this is for people who use a large TV or computer monitor in place of the LCD monitor on the back of their camera (so you’re taking a cable out of your camera, and going straight into the monitor itself—-not into a computer).
    My questions are:

    (a) Which monitor have you found works best
    How are you connecting your camera (RCA jack? HDMI cable? etc.) to the monitor.
    I want to try a different set-up for a change, and any advice you guys could share would be greatly appreciated.

  • Is it a photo, or a fake?
    AutoDesk (maker’s of 3D CAD software) has a very cool promo-site where they show you different images, and they have a little poll where they ask you to choose which images shown are real photos, and which are 3D computer generated (and both are really there—it’s not a trick). It’s kind of fun, and kind of amazing at the same time. Here’s the link.
  • Only Four-Spots Left For My Landscape Workshop in Savannah
    Remember the landscape workshop I mentioned on Friday, coming up in Savannah, Georgia? I just learned that there are only four-seats left, so if you were planning on being a part of it, I’d grab one of those seats today. Here’s the link to my post with the details. Hope I’ll see you in one of those four remaining spots.

That’s it for today, gang. I’m really beat (it was a nine hour bus-ride home last night), so I’m keepin’ it short today, but I’ll be back in full swing tomorrow! Have a kick-butt Thursday everybody (and stop snickering).


This weekend I flew up to Detroit to spend the weekend with my buddy Terry White, and to do a presentation for his Macintosh User Group, “MacGroup Detroit.” (There’s a funny story about the snacks you see above coming up in a moment).


They are just an absolutely fantastic group to present to, and I can’t imagine any group any where being more welcoming, fun, and gracious to a guest speaker than they are. It really spoils you (Photo above by Louis Levin). This year my presentation was on Retouching Portraits in Photoshop, and I had a full 90-minutes so I could really cover a lot of ground.

w-guest-prices1Of course, you can’t go up to Terry’s and not have a blast, because Terry really rolls out the red carpet, but this time was even more special because Terry had recently completed adding on a guest room suite at his house, and I was the first official house guest to stay there. The suite is awesome, (with a bathroom that would make the Westin jealous), but what really cracked me up was he had a basket of “mini bar” snacks just like in a hotel, and when I got there, sticking outside the basket was a card with a list of charges, just like in a hotel (of course, he did the thing as a gag, and I got Terry to give me the file he created—click on that thumbnail at the left to see it full size—it’ll crack you up! [Well, it cracked me up anyway]).

Anyway, we were doing totally fun stuff the whole time I was up there, and I really had a blast hanging with Terry in his totally tech’d out house. Thanks Terry for a wonderful weekend, and thanks Mac Group Detroit for such a warm welcome, and for the opportunity to share my latest photo retouching techniques.


On June 24-28, thirty photographers will join me, along with landscape photography legend Bill Fortney, and fine art photographer Joanne Wells, for a photography and digital imaging workshop in the beautiful surroundings of Savannah, Georgia that will change how you shoot and process your images forever. You’re invited to be one of those thirty photographers.

This workshop, produced by the wonderful folks over at the “Great American Photography Workshops,” will combine on-location shoots each day, with classroom time focused on one topic; how to create stunning landscape images.

We start each day with a dawn photo shoot at some of the most beautiful shooting locales in the entire South. Then, after we break for a yummy breakfast, we’re in the classroom where you’ll learn about digital photography, about processing your images in Photoshop, and about how to combine the two to create really captivating images.

After lunch, we’re back in the classroom for more learning, and then as the beautiful light descends upon Savannah, we’re back on location shooting landscapes. After our shoot, we break for dinner to unwind and talk about the day’s experiences.

Now, I have to tell you, this will be the third landscape workshop I’ve done with Bill Fortney, and Bill really knows how to make these workshops an awful lot of fun. You’ll learn a bunch, you’ll laugh a bunch, and you’ll come away with some images that not only will wind up in your portfolio, you’ll definitely be framing and hanging some of these on the wall.

Because of my schedule, this is the only landscape workshop I’ll be teaching this year, and as someone that reads my blog, I hope you’ll be able to come to spend these five-days with me, Bill, and Joanne shooting, laughing and learning in the beautiful scenery of Savannah.

It’s $795 for the workshop, and obviously, space is very limited (both of our previous workshops were sold out well in advance), so if you want to go, here’s a link to more details and where to register. I really hope I’ll see you there, because this is a workshop you’ll never forget!


I know I kind of mentioned this in passing a few weeks back, but last week we officially announced the launch of my brand new Photoshop Down & Dirty Tricks Tour, which is kicking off in Washington, DC on Friday, May 8th at the Washington Convention Center.

If you’re thinking of coming, I would definitely sign up now, because since we announced it last Thursday, this has been the fastest filling seminar in our 16-year history, and I want you to come spend the day with me (especially if you’re a reader of this blog).

This tour is all about Photoshop special effects, and creating the same looks you see in magazines, on TV, in Hollywood and on the Web, so I’m not going to be doing the standard stuff (like teaching color correction, or sharpening, or Camera Raw); instead this totally a day of eye-popping, jaw-dropping, way cool special effects—the kind of stuff that clients just love and I hope you’ll join me for this very special live seminar in DC. It’s $99 for the full day event (only $79 if you’re a NAPP member).  Here’s the link with all the details. Hope I see you there!


OK gang, as promised, here’s the cool secret thing: Today I’m releasing a free custom Photoshop CS4 panel that lets you get the RSS feed for this blog, “The Photoshop Insider” right inside Photoshop CS4 in its own separate panel (so it’s just like any other panel [formerly known as palettes], inside Photoshop).

If you click on the graphic above, you’ll see the Photoshop Insider panel is right there alongside the Layers panel, Channels, Paths, etc. and you’ll see the headlines from my posts, along with the RSS feed of the beginning of each post. If you see one that interests you, just click on Read More…..

The ability to add your own custom panels to Photoshop is new in CS4, and it came in the form of a free utility called “The Configurator” which lets you customize and extend Photoshop in some amazing ways. In fact, at Photoshop World in Boston next week, we have a special “Extensibility Track” featuring in-depth classes on how to create panels and extend Photoshop (taught by Adobe’s own John Nack, Tom Ruark, and Jeff Tranberry from the Photoshop team). If you’re into this stuff, make sure you check out their sessions (open to all Photoshop World attendees).

Here’s the link to the download the free panel. Once you download it, just double-click on it, and the CS4 Extension Manger will automatically install it where it’s supposed to go, then all you have to do is Restart Photoshop, then go under the Window menu, under Extensions, and choose PS_Insider.

A big thanks to Jeff Tranberry and our friends on the Photoshop team for their advice and suggestions in helping us develop this panel.

We’ve been getting a lot of frantic calls and emails about our Photoshop for Photographers seminar next week in Houston with Ben Willmore, because a few days ago it sold out.

The good news is; we were able to expand the ballroom in the Convention Center to accomodate more people (so everyone on the cancellation waiting list will be now able to attend), and if you weren’t already signed up—now you can (although there are already less than 40 seats left, so if you’re thinking of going—-I’d sign up now. Here’s the link.