A Great Good Mornin’ To Ya From Photoshop World Las Vegas! (photo above by Pete Collins taken during yesterday’s Concert Photography Pre-Conference Workshop – I sat in for a few songs with the band Rebel Soul).

Streaming LIVE Keynote
Our opening keynote, and Adobe’s keynote presentation, are being streamed LIVE this morning (well, depending on where you are it may not be morning, but it’s a warm, sunny morning here in Vegas!).

Here’s the link to register (it’s free), and once you register it emails you the link to the broadcast.

Hope you can join us – it’s at 12:00 noon East Coast (NYC) time or 9:00 am Pacific Time (LA time).

Can’t wait to meet everybody today – we are super-psyched! :)

Best,

-Scott

P.S. Peter Hurley’s new book debuts here at the show today, as does the print version of my new “How do I do that in Lightroom” book. Whoo Hoo!
 

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.

OPENING KEYNOTE:
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.

AWARDS CELEBRATION & CONFERENCE WRAP UP:
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.

MIDNIGHT MADNESS:
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.

LIVE NATURAL LIGHTING SHOOTS:
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.

ROCK N’ ROLL AFTER PARTY WITH REBEL SOUL:
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)

FREE CANON AND NIKON SENSOR CLEANING: August 11-13 | times vary

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

https://twitter.com/PhotoshopWorld_
https://www.facebook.com/MyPhotoshopWorld

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!

-Scott

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:

STEP ONE:
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). 

STEP TWO:
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.

STEP THREE:
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.

 

STEP FOUR:
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.

STEP FIVE:
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!

STEP SIX:
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).

STEP SEVEN:
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).

STEP EIGHT:
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.

STEP NINE: 
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!

Best,

-Scott

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!

 

It's time to start making great photos at the level you never thought was possible with Joe McNally's newest tour. As one of the world's top photographers, Joe will help you achieve that "ah-ha" moment in photography. This one-day seminar tour will not only teach you the start to finish process of what it takes to pull off a successful shoot, it will also inspire and challenge you in new ways.

Your day will break down every step involved in picking a subject and assessing locations, then drive you straight into live shooting and all the important factors to consider. In just one day, you'll finally arrive at the perfect moment when everything suddenly makes sense - that "moment it clicks."

It’s coming to Orlando on August 21, and Miami on August 24! Leave a comment for your chance to win a FREE TICKET to one of these tour stops.

Last Week’s Winners
How Do I Do That In Lightroom? by Scott Kelby eBook
– Alexander Epelbaum
– Michael Preisman
– Alan Norfleet

The Headshot by Peter Hurley eBook
– Peter Lawton
– Micah Peterson
– John Griffin

KelbyOne Live Ticket
– Mike Harvey

If any of these is you, we’ll be in touch soon. Have a great Thursday!

Hi, I'm a guy from Arkansas.

People pay me to take pictures sometimes, and sometimes they don't. Today is a day where no one is paying me to take pictures, so I'm writing this blog post because Brad Moore asked me to, and he seems like a nice guy (on the internet).

I've been shooting pictures for the last seven years as my only source of income, but that doesn't necessarily mean I shoot "full time" – some months are slow, and some months I can barely keep up, and most months are somewhere in the middle. Photography feeds my family, pays my mortgage, and sometimes I get to buy beer, which is quite honestly everything I could have ever hoped for in life.

I shoot for the New York Times, Reuters, Getty, AP, various magazines, blah blah blah, who cares⦠I have a camera and some gear and I'll point it at pretty much anything I'm paid to point it at.

I know quite a few photographers, and the ones who are successful year after year are the ones who shoot to earn a living and pay their bills, while the ones who want to be cute and vintage and Instagram-famous usually end up becoming real estate agents.

So if you're afraid you might be getting dangerously close to listing your first home, here's one of the more important things I've learned in my career as a photographer:

If your pictures are boring, try making them way more complicated.

Most people will tell you to keep it simple, stupid – but in my opinion, its actually really difficult to make a simple photo interesting enough to build a career on. These days, everyone has a camera and maybe even a light or two, and the internet is flooded with simple photos that really aren't that memorable.

The only way to get anyone's attention in the current photography market is to try things that are complicated, difficult, and a gigantic hassle – but when its done right, it pays off. By going the extra mile to try something crazy, you are telling your client (and more importantly, your future clients) that you'll stop at nothing to give them exactly what they want, and much more.

Get in the water. Use a dozen lights. Wake up at dawn. Contact whoever you have to contact to get a permit. Spend an entire week diagraming and outlining your setup, and your backup setup, and your backup to your backup. Pre-light it. Rent gear if you don't own it. Hire models that know what they're doing. Take your time. Make photos that no one in their right mind would go to the trouble to make. If your models aren't working, get new ones. If your location sucks, change it.

Most photographers don't get into this business to get their hands dirty, and sweat, and spend twelve hours pre-lighting a shoot, but that's what it takes these days. Getting everything to work right is obviously much harder when you complicate it, but in the end, that's what makes you better, and that's what separates you from the pack.

The biggest hindrance to your career as a photographer is not the limits placed on you by everyone else, it's the limits you place on yourself.

Don't dumb yourself down to match the attitude of everyone around you, and don't shoot crap photos just because it's a crap paycheck.

Treat every shoot like it's the cover of Vanity Fair, and your entire career is riding on getting this one shot right, and trust me – your business will grow like never before.

Now, since this is a photography blog, here's a few of my pictures…

You can see more of Jacob’s work at JacobSlaton.com, and follow him on Instagram and Twitter.

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).
Bethany2lr1sm

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. 

Best,

Scott

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!

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