Wednesday
Aug
2014
27

It’s Guest Blog Wednesday featuring Jeremy Cowart!

by Brad Moore  |  11 Comments

For years now, I’ve always preached the importance and value of personal projects or personal work. The million dollar question that I always get asked is any variation of “How do I get work? How do I get to where you are? How do I make a living as a photographer?”

Well, the best answer is personal work. The path to nearly every success story with famous photographers is personal work… some project that they started on their own that got discovered by an art director, then another, and so on.

See, it’s not enough anymore to just take nice photos. Nearly anyone these days can learn how to take good a nice photo. But it’s rare that you see that combined with a unique passion project (unique being the key word there).

All that being said, I try to walk the talk and do my own personal projects. I’ve done projects in Haiti, Africa and in the states as well. My latest is a project called PortraitQA and the premise is simple. Photograph someone and have them ask a question that the next subject answers. Then they ask a question that the next person answers and on and on and on. It’s an endless cultural dialogue of strangers. Sometimes the subjects know each other but it’s mostly stranger to stranger.

Here are some favorites thus far:


Bradley Spitzer – 33 – Art Director/Photographer
My question to Bradley:
What do you fear?
Bradley’s answer: I fear I will be alone for the rest of my life, as my wife and I will soon be divorced. I worry that the stain of a failed marriage negates the possibility of having a healthy, loving relationship in the future. And even beyond those, I fear that I won’t learn from my mistakes and bad decisions.
Bradley’s question for the next subject: What do you regret?


Andres Martinez - @ondrace - 28 – Photographer
Answer: What do I regret? Well, a lot. One of my biggest regrets is letting fear run so much of my life. When I think back on how many times I didn’t seize a moment or an opportunity that’s presented itself due to being fearful of failure or a less than comfortable outcome, my heart breaks a little bit. What could simply saying “yes” instead of a hesitant “maybe…” have done for me so many times before? What makes taking that first small step so difficult sometimes? Every situation that’s be tough has ultimately made me stronger. Why can’t I learn that lesson? So here’s to taking some risks, making some mistakes and being better.


Reese Cowart - 12 - 6th Grader (I had Reese hold up her IPhone with the flashlight on. I had no idea the lens flare would do this.)
Previous question: With technology expanding at such a rapid rate, how do you see yourself living 25 years from now?
Reese’s answer: I see myself living in the future with flying cars! In the future I hope that I will be able to carry myself around on Aerial Silks! When I am 37 I will be able to have a robot to do all chores for me!
Reese’s question for the next subject: I lost my Daddy this year. How do you deal with the loss of a loved one?


Jason Brown - @jasonbrown0 - 34 - CEO of Aroluxe Marketing
Jason’s answer: Reese, first off I’m very sorry for your loss. Second, I know how you feel. I lost my dad 35 days ago today in a freak accident, and I miss him so much. “How do you deal with the loss of a loved one?” For me, my answer has been a single word: “God.” I’m extremely weak in a lot of areas, including understanding what’s best for the world. So I chose to do it with God, because without God death is the end, but with God death is the beginning of something that God tells me is glorious for my dad. Without God, a burial is a permanent rest below, but with God a burial is temporary until my dad is raised up again. Without God, I don’t get to see my dad again, but with God, I get to see and hug and talk and kiss him again one day – so I chose with God. I wasn’t built to “deal” with death or loss, so God does it for me. He wraps up the confusion, the emptiness, and the heartache in perfect wisdom, love, and understanding and he hands it to me in every situation – when I’m strong and want to do everything that I think my dad would want me to accomplish and when I’m alone in my car, and a song that reminds me of him comes on and I break down and cry, God gives me exactly what I need at that moment. That doesn’t mean that it’s easier or hurts any less, it just means that I’m not alone and I know that I don’t have to deal with the “loss”, because it’s not a loss, it’s just a temporary separation.


Gaylon Wilcox – 62 – Retired Construction Worker
Previous question: They say smell is the sense that is tied most to memory. What is your top memory associated with your favorite smell?
Gaylons answer: My favorite smell and best memories was when we poured Italian dressing over the brisket and it would drip down onto the charcoal below. We used to enter cooking contests and we would cook everything that could crawl… alligator, raccoon, you name it. We had such a blast.


Lenisa Ann Careaga – @misslenisalove - 26 – Dance instructor, Nutritionist, Nanny, College student
Previous question: What to do you want to do? Get married? Stay single? Go into the army? You’ve got the rest of your life ahead of you.
Lenisa’s Answer: My favorite quote is, “Dance as if nobody’s watching, Love like you’ve never been hurt, Sing like nobody’s listening, Live like its heaven on earth.” My dream is to be able to inspire women from around the world that have been through domestic violence. I plan to use nutrition and art therapy to help them heal from their harsh experiences. Exercise and eating healthy are powerful tools that ease the pain created from their emotional struggles. Art therapy, such as painting, dancing, journaling, etc… build confidence, compliments the healing process, and helps women explore who they are. I would love to get married and have children in the future but I definitely want to never lose sight my dream, while helping spread self-love to other people.


Peter Court – @peterrcourt - 22 – Leading Initiatives for Q Ideas
Previous question: What’s the happiest part of your life right now?
Peter’s answer: Great question. It would have to be the people in my life. I recently relocated from New York City to Nashville just three weeks ago, huge change in basically every aspect of my life. The friendships and relationships I have already established here in a few short weeks have encouraged me like nothing else. Moving and leaving “comfortable” is always tough, but necessary for any type of growth to occur.


Fairlight Hubbard – @fairlight – 36 – Photographer/director
Previous question: If you were offered a million dollars, would you skip the next year of life? Why or why not?
Fairlight’s answer: The funny thing is, I just spent the last 3 months taking time away from my “life,” or at least the life I have built thus far. In that time, I revisited the life of my childhood living off grid, I remembered how I love to play in creeks… forgot why looking in the mirror seemed important… I lost touch with most everyone… but I got in touch with me. I remembered what I was made of… who I am. Although I don’t think money should be a catalyst for meaningful decisions, if a windfall allows one to break free from a routine that is no longer serving them, it is a gift that should not be passed over. Perhaps skipping life is when we don’t take this time…

You can follow this project on Instagram, OKDOTHIS, and Facebook, and see more of Jeremy’s work at JeremyCowart.com. You can also catch him live in person at Photoshop World in Las Vegas next week!

Tuesday
Aug
2014
26

Some Quick Tuesday Stuff

by Scott Kelby  |  2 Comments

Above: iPhone shot of Bruno Mars in concert.

Whew!!! What a busy travel week. On Saturday I snuck the wifey off to Vegas to see Bruno Mars in concert at the Chelsea in the Cosmopolitan Hotel (it was a surprise birthday present — her birthday was a few weeks ago), and we had an absolute blast! Bruno Mars’ show was just absolutely outstanding — one of the best concerts either of us had ever seen. Everything from the sound to the lights to the stage show was just spot on. What a talented guy!

Anyway, here’s what’s up:

Adobe Releases “Aperture to Lightroom Migration Guide”
They actually did this a few weeks ago, but I run into lots of folks who hadn’t heard it had been released. You can download the free guide (called “”Making the Switch from Aperture to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom”), in PDF format, right here. 

 

Heads up to Canon Pro Shooters
This past week Canon launched a brand new Twitter page for pro Canon shooters here in the United States. You can follow them right here: @canonusapro

Worldwide Photo Walk Update:
We’re up to over 675 walks so far in cities all around the world, and we’re almost to 6,000 photo walkers! (Whoo hoo!). My thanks to everybody who has donated $1 to the orphanage (much love!). New cities include: Ludwigshafen, Germany; Bronx, NY, USA; Springfield, IL, USA; Embu das Artes, Brasil; Oviedo, Spain; Worcester, Worcester UK; Szeged, Hungary; and Auckland, New Zealand. Come join the walk near you: (link).

I’m in St. Louis today — Kansas City on Thursday!
I’m teaching my full-day seminar here in St. Louis today, and on Thursday in Kansas City. Looking forward to meeting a whole bunch of you in person. http://kel.by/SM_SLAPtour 

Photoshop World is just one week away!
It’s not to late to register and join us for the full conference in Las Vegas. Here’s the link. Also, if you can’t make the full conference, but want a free pass to the Expo floor, here’s the link for a free expo-only pass. Lots of cool stuff to see!

OK, gang — that’s it for this Tuesdays. I hope if you’re here in St. Louis and you read my blog, you’ll come up and say ‘hi.” :)

All my best,

-Scott

Monday
Aug
2014
25

I’m Bringing My “Shoot Like a Pro” Seminar to Swingin’ London Baby, Yeah!

by Scott Kelby  |  4 Comments

Greetings from the Airport (well, I’m already on the plane, so “greetings from the Tarmac — I’m on my way to New York to shoot the US Open Tennis Tournament, which kicks off today. But first….I’m heading to London!!!

When: Friday, 10, October
Where: Conference Centre Westminster
Tickets: Only 99£ at http://kelbyone.com/live/uk/
Earlybird Discount: Use the code Live10″ you save £10 — enough to buy me a pint.
Why: Because I love Swingin’ London baby, yeah!

PLUS: If you sign up now, you get my “Light it, Shoot it, Retouch it” full tour (recorded live on location as it happened) as a digital download.

For more details, or to sign up (seating is limited), click right here:http://kelbyone.com/live/uk/ – If you’re reading this from the UK, could you help us spread the word over there? Much appreciated.

Hope to meet you in person in London!

Cheers,

-Scott

P.S. Tomorrow I’m teaching this seminar in St. Louis and on Thursday in Kansas City. If you want to come out and spend the day with me, it’s not too late: http://kel.by/SM_SLAPtour 

 

Friday
Aug
2014
22

OK, Are You Ready for a Really Cool Contest?

by Scott Kelby  |  9 Comments

It’s called “Expose Yourself With Scott Kelby” (I didn’t name it. I would have named it “Get nudie-nude naked and naughty with DJ Scott-Scotty K and the fully clothed nudists” but they voted it down).

Anyway, if you are picked as the winner, you win a Sony RX-100 Camera, so if you can get past the whole thing of having nothing on, this is awesome.

The contest is for photographers who want to share what they’ve learned with other photographer through a blog post, article, photo submission, etc. on InMyBag.net —-(in their words: “InMyBag.net is now a fully fledged photography magazine. In addition to featuring awesome photographers and their kit, we put a strong emphasis on including additional value – it could be a tip, a mini tutorial or general advice. Essentially, we’re asking photographers to SHOW & TELL). “ 

Anyway, this month the folks at InMyBag.net are letting me pick my “favorite submission from the 10 most popular posts submitted and published between 1st July and 31st August 2014″ (so get to writing — you could win!).

Here’s a link with all the details — I wish you the best of luck — hope you win the camera, and maybe even some clothes (hey, it could happen). ;-)

Thursday
Aug
2014
21

It’s Free Stuff Thursday!

by Brad Moore  |  8 Comments

Free Expo Pass for Photoshop World Las Vegas
If you can’t attend the full three-day training conference, you can still take part in the Free Expo that’s headed for Las Vegas in a couple of weeks. Check out the show floor, packed with free classes, product demos, and exclusive show specials from the hottest names in the industry. The Expo hits Vegas September 3-5 at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. Register now for your free pass!

 

Photographing Motion Indoors with Joe McNally
This class is all about different ways of capturing motion with a still camera in an indoor setting. Join Joe McNally for a series of on-location shoots as he demonstrates different techniques for revealing people and objects in motion. From capturing an aerial dancer on a flowing silk to showing the motion of flowing fabric and hair, Joe steps you through the process of pulling all of the pieces together and then modifying them on the fly to meet the real world conditions you will encounter. Joe uses a combination of ambient light, speedlights, continuous hot lights, and strobe to create different effects that can be used to show blur or stop all motion in its tracks.

KelbyOne Live
Want to spend a day with Scott Kelby, Joe McNally, Corey Barker, Matt Kloskowski, or Ben Willmore? Check out these seminar tours!

Shoot Like A Pro with Scott Kelby
Aug 26 – St. Louis, MO
Aug 28 – Kansas City, MO
Sept 26 – Houston, TX

The Power of One Flash with Joe McNally
Sept 24 – Cleveland, OH

Photoshop Down & Dirty Master FX with Corey Barker
Oct 3 – New Orleans, LA

The Lightroom LIVE Tour with Matt Kloskowski
Sept 29 – Livonia, MI

The Photoshop Creativity Tour with Ben Willmore
Sept 22 – Arlington, TX

You can check out the full schedule for seminars through August, and we’ll be updating it with more dates soon! Leave a comment for your chance to win a ticket to one of these events!

Last Week’s Winners
KelbyOne Rentals
- Marijke
- Ross S

KelbyOne Live Ticket
- Terry Gardner

If you’re one of the lucky winners, we’ll be in touch soon. Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday
Aug
2014
20

It’s Guest Blog Wednesday featuring Jason Groupp!

by Brad Moore  |  4 Comments


Photos by Peter Hurley

Howdy folks! I hope you’re having a great summer! Here in NYC I feel like we’ve had a bit more rain than in the past, but all in all it’s been a very pleasant season, albeit a fast one! I feel like we were just celebrating Memorial Day, and now I’m suddenly busy preparing for Photoshop World in just a few weeks! Yikes! If you come see me speak, I promise to fill your head with loads of information about OCF (Off Camera Flash) geekiness, but today I’m going to talk to you about that moving target we call the work/life balance. So if you’re here today to learn about the difference between an f/stop, and the bus stop you should move directly to this class. ;-)

….you’re still here?! GREAT! Let’s talk about that work/life balance. Come in a little closer, I’m going to let you in on a secret…closer, closer. Sorry kids, whomever told you can have a wonderful life filled with happy, joyous days with your family AND run a fruitful, cash $$ money business while you skip and run into the distance riding a unicorn over the rainbow is either a lunatic or has just figured out the right pharmaceutical medley to keep them happy while they’re most likely screaming on the inside.

So why go on this rant you ask? Why am I trying to crush your mellow? In the words of Lynn Cartia, “I’d like to take this moment to bring it WAAY down.”

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Jason Groupp, and I’m the Director of Education and Membership for WPPI/Rangefinder and PhotoPlus Expo/PDN (Oct 29 – Nov 1).  I am also a photographer of 25 plus years, mainly weddings with a smattering of commercial and editorial work over the years.  Going from my studio every day to an office has been one of the weirdest, most jarring experiences of my life and has forced me to make some lifestyle changes, while at the same time trying to manage the artist ego inside who needs to stay creative, and…oh yeah, I have a beautiful wife, and two nutty children ages 5 and 7. Managing three different lives at the same time, clocking nearly 55,000 miles on United this year, trying to be the best Dad in the world AND desperately trying to find the energy to be creative has proven to be a phenomenal challenge. Did I mention that I like to workout at least 4 days a week?

There’s a scene in Goodfellas where Ray Liotta is trying to manage all these errands, and still put on a face that he’s in complete control. He keeps complaining about this helicopter flying above him and this weird feeling like something is going to go wrong, and it does. Of course he’s crazed out on drugs, and that’s part of the problem, but at a certain point his work/life balance comes crashing down to a halt in epic proportions. He failed.

Okay, so I’m hoping most of you don’t have DEA agents flying over you watching your every move, but I’m sure most of you have felt like Ray (minus the drugs) at some point in your lives. We all have that moment when we think we can outsmart reality, and it all comes abrupt stop, and realize it’s time to change.

Now don’t beat yourself up! I’m here to tell you it’s okay. Wait, if I did I would then be that crazy person who tells you can have it all. You can’t. But that’s OK. I’m here to tell you it’s OK. ;-)

This past weekend I had one of those moments. My wife and I do a great job of  “dividing and conquering” as we like to call it. This includes general errands, dropping/picking up kids, play dates and stuff like that. A typical weekend includes early morning runs, followed by trips to the dry cleaner, supermarket, and some kind of kid-friendly activity to finish the day off. However, this past weekend there was quite a few more adult things that needed to be done, including calling several contractors, replacing tires on both cars, finding a new mechanic, and coordinating multiple birthday parties drop-offs, etc.  As we sat eating our breakfasts  my daughter says, “OMG, there’s a cat stuck in our tree.” She’s got a great imagination, so we laughed, but then she repeated, “No really, there’s a cat stuck in the tree!”

With that one sentence, I knew at an instance, this would be the thing that completely derailed our weekend. The next several hours included phone calls to the police, animal control, fire department, and of course visits from our neighbors, all offering advice that was completely unhelpful. I looked at my wife and said that we don’t have time for a cat stuck in the tree! “We have all of these errands to run, plus I have to write an article (this one!) for Kelby, plus I was going to edit some images later.” She smiled at me and said “Yes, but there’s a cat stuck in the tree.”

At that moment I realized the stress of trying to get it all in wasn’t going to happen, my plan had failed, and that was okay.

Here’s ten things I do to help keep my sanity, none of them get me to achieve a work/life balance, but helps maintain a large enough bucket to keep the water out of our sinking ship.

1 – Recognize the warning signs. At some point you know you can’t get it all done, and you have to let it go.

2 – You can’t be good at everything all the time, but you can be good at what you are doing right now. Focus! Focus is the key.

3 – The “Play like a champion today” Notre Dame football motto can apply to everything you do. Prioritize, and conquer. When you’re food shopping, do that, “I’m shopping like a champion today,” “I’m buying tires for my car like a champion today.”

4 – Be present for your family. This is the hardest one for me. You can still drag your kids around to do the errands, but make the time to look into your kids’ eyes and listen. Too often I find myself on a business trip missing my family feeling guilty about not spending enough quality time with them. The cat stuck in the tree really made me think about how our lives need to be more balanced.

5 – Call in sick once in a while! Do it!

6 – Throw something out! Or donate it to someone who wants it. Clearing out clutter is awesome.

7 – Call your Mom. Well that doesn’t achieve a work/life balance, but she wants to hear from you.

8 – Kill your television. There’s nothing good to watch on it, and you are wasting too much time looking at it.

9 – Go read a book. It will keep you sane, and it will keep your brain alive.

10 – Make some plans to do something fun. John Lennon said, “Life is what happens when you’re making plans.” GO MAKE SOME!

I’m not sure if this was a helpful article, but it was cathartic for me to write. Now and again there comes a time in your life when you get a cat stuck in the tree and I’m here to tell you it’s OK. You are not going to find the balance; all you can do is manage the fallout. Trick is to manage it like a champion. It’s OK!

You can see more of Jason’s work at JasonGroupp.com, follow him on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, and catch him live at Photoshop World Las Vegas!

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