One Light, Two Light with Joe McNally in Philadelphia & Tampa The magical unicorn of lighting, Joe McNally, is going to be in Philadelphia tomorrow, November 2, and Tampa on November 5 with his One Light, Two Light seminar! Whether you’re using small flash or studio lighting, Joe shows the amazing results you can get using just one or two lights. It’s not to late to sign up for these seminars, or you can leave a comment for a chance to win a free ticket! I’ll choose a winner for each this afternoon, so don’t wait to leave a comment.
Photoshop for Photographers with Scott Kelby in Boston The miniature pony of Photoshop, Scott Kelby, is going to be in Boston on November 7 with his Photoshop for Photographers seminar! Scott shows photographers his famed 7-Point System for Camera Raw, 10 Portrait Retouching Techniques Every Photographer Needs To Know, Down & Dirty Tricks, Killer Tips, and ends the day showing how he finishes an image beginning to end.
If you want to know how to make your images look great quickly, sign up right here! Leave a comment for your chance to win a free ticket.
Conquering Midday Light with Lindsay Adler Doing an on-location portrait shoot, and the only time your subject is available is the middle of the day? That’s every photographer’s worst nightmare. Well, thanks to Lindsay Adler’s latest class on Kelby Training, it doesn’t have to be anymore. In Conquering Midday Light, Lindsay shows you how to create great images even in the harshest of light. With just a couple of accessories and available light, you can still get images that you and your subject will both love.
Shortcut Sumo Scott told you all about this on Tuesday, but it’s a free app and today is Free Stuff Thursday, so I’m mentioning it again! :-) Shortcut Sumo was designed to help you find all the shortcuts available in Adobe Camera Raw, Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, along with some of The Photoshop Guys’ favorite shortcuts in a short video for each program.
[And, of course, they couldn't just do something like "Hi, I'm Matt, and my favorite Lightroom shortcut is pressing D to switch to the Develop module." because that would be lame and boring. So, let's just say they decided to have fun with the videos :-)]
Right now, the Adobe Camera Raw module is available for free, the Photoshop module is available for $2.99, and Lightroom, Illustrator, and InDesign are on the way!
My name is Frank Doorhof, and I’m based in the Netherlands where I run a photostudio together with my wife Annewiek. We shoot mainly fashion, artists, celebrities and some family work.
Where most people will probably know me from is the workshops and the videos you can find on Kelby Training. You probably already read a lot from me about why you should use a light meter, calibrate your monitor and use a color checker…. So when I’m asked for a guest post on Scott’s blog I decided to do it a bit differently this time.
One of the things I always hear during the workshops I teach can be boiled down to two main topics:
Creativity and getting your name known.
Let’s look at these two for todays guestblog.
Creativity When I do portfolio reviews I see a lot of nice work, but very often I see work that I think could be improved A LOT by adding some simple things in the image. In other words, the light is great, the posing of the model is okay, the location is great but… Well, let’s start at the beginning.
We all know how we started out right?
A model with jeans and a tanktop. Now this is great as an outfit for outside, don’t get me wrong. I love jeans and a tanktop (although you will never see me wearing them :D) However when we do a photo shoot it’s often much more interesting to add something extra to the image and this is were the problems start…. Styling costs money right?
Well yes and no.
What a lot of photographers forget is that you don’t really need a stylist per se. A stylist is a great addition to your shoot, but there is a lot you can do yourself just by being “creative.” Most of all, learn to see possibilities with materials and props you would normally probably not see fit for photoshoots.
I can write a lot of text, but let’s look at some examples and you can see how material that actually did not cost anything (or very little) can make some really interesting images.
The material in this first image is actually bubble plastic. A lot of companies have big rolls of this in the packing department, and with a bit of creativity, the model has a new dress. When lighting this material it gives an awesome look due to the structure of the bubbles and the slight reflective look.
The next image did raise some eyebrows when people heard during a seminar what the material was for these dresses… Believe it or not, but it’s all Christmas wrapping paper that was left from Christmas, so in fact it got a second life.
But you can also use props.
In the following shot I used an old window that I bought for less than $20 in a junk yard. The dress the model wears looks like a wedding dress with a twist, but it’s not a dress at all. The whole dress is made out of curtains (yeah the stuff that hangs in front of windows).
It’s big. It’s bad. It’s here — Shortcut Sumo, a brand-new ebook from “The Photoshop Guys” at the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP)[Matt, RC, Corey, Pete, and me] with quick, easy access to all the Mac and PC keyboard shortcuts for Adobe Camera Raw, Photoshop, Lightroom, InDesign and Illustrator and it’s available NOW for the iPad.
Here’s the Scoop: If there was ever an idea that works as an ebook, this is it because to do the book the way I envisioned it, you really couldn’t do it as a printed book — it would literally be thousands of pages; as thick as a phone book and nobody would ever buy it at the price you’d need to charge. That’s because I really felt this book would need to have two very specific features:
(1)I wanted just one shortcut per page. That’s right — just one, but with some bonuses, like a screen capture of what the shortcut is for, a full keyboard visually showing just that one the shortcut, and a brief sentence that explains the shortcut.
(2)If you use a Mac, you should only see Mac keyboards shortcuts. Same with a PC. So, when you first launch the App, you tap on Mac or PC, and from then on, you only see the shortcuts for the platform you chose (but you can change your mind, anytime). That means creating a separate page for every Mac shortcut, and another for every PC shortcut. Way too costly to do in print, but perfect for an eBook.
But today’s ebook format didn’t give me quite what we needed The standard ebook format (used by everyone from Apple’s iBooks store to Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes & Noble’s Nook, and so on), doesn’t allow you to type in a word and have it search through the book, and with a book of keyboard shortcuts, we felt it would be important to be able to search using a key word, so that was one of the reasons we decided to make the book an App, rather than a standard ePub book found in the iBook store.
A small kink in the plan It’s always something, right? In this case, it happens when you key word search — at this point in the development of the App, the search results bring up both the PC and Mac shortcuts (not just the shortcuts for the platform you chose at the beginning). So, as long as you’re looking through the contents pages to find the shortcut you’re looking for, it stays platform specific. If you type in a search term, you get both. Not a deal breaker, but it’s not exactly the way we wanted it to work, but it gives us something to work on going forward.
Since it’s an App, now we can add video, right? Right! We included a short video at the start of each program where we each share a few of our favorite tips. The tips are good, the presentation is…well…we very loosely kept with the theme [wink]. Check out RC in the screen cap above and you’ll see what I mean.
How much does it cost? The Shortcut Sumo App is FREE and comes with the shortcut module for Adobe Camera Raw. Additional Modules are $2.99 each, and the module for Photoshop CS6 is already available for download right from the App (we’re just finishing up other shortcut modules for Lightroom, InDesign, and Adobe illustrator, which when added to the Camera Raw and Photoshop, they form the “Biggest, Baddest Collection of Adobe keyboard shortcuts ever!” [insert gong sound here].
I hope you’ll check it out today (especially since the Camera Raw module is free). Here’s the link to Shortcut Sumo on the iTunes store, and of course you can just search for “Shortcut Sumo” on your iPad in the App Store. Hope you like and find it useful.
I wish I had better news about this one, but due to Sandy (the massive storm), most of DC and the surrounding areas are in a state of emergency and we had no choice but to postpone today’s event (my Photoshop for Photographers seminar).
We’re working with the Convention Center to reschedule a new date as soon as possible, and I’ll keep you informed as soon as we know the date. Of course, we’re very disappointed, and we know many of you are, too — thanks for understanding, and we’ll be back on a sunny day real soon.
If you are registered for the event, keep an eye on your email for more details. In the meantime, stay safe everyone and know that our prayers are with you.
(Above: iPhone shot of Nikon’s huge booth right at the front door of the expo hall).
This was a quick trip: up one day and right back home the next, but it was totally worth it (plus I got to do a session on “Photoshop for Travel Photographers” at B&H Photo the night before, and it went really great — thanks to everyone who came out, and to the awesome team at B&H Photo for the honor of letting me teach there. I had a wonderful crowd and met some really nice folks.
(Above: This was taken right before my class at B&H Photo started — photo by my buddy Dave with his iPhone).
I didn’t have any sessions at the show itself, (just a few meetings) so I got to do my two favorite things: (1) Check out all the latest gear from the vendors, and (2) watch some demos and presentations at some of the booths (that totally rocked — more on that in a minute).
I was loving the Nikon Theater Right when you walked in the door, Nikon had a theater where they featured presentations from a number of Nikon shooters and it was fantastic (by the way: Canon had a presentation stage as well, but their stage was more set up for training with live shoots, whereas Nikon’s was more for inspirational talks and teaching. Both were packed. Both were awesome).
I spent a lot of the day at the Nikon theater, first watching the adventure photography of Corey Rich. He chronicled his 14-day project in Mexico creating promo stills and a DSLR movie for Nikon’s launch of the D4. His presentation was really great in that his point was, “Look at this amazing video, just a few regular guys made, you can do this, too!” Of course, I wouldn’t repel down a waterfall to shoot a pro-kayaker going over waterfalls” but outside of that, he showed that it was just some guys with the D4 (and a lot of talent) can make something special (and his video and still both were awesome). Very good presentation all around (and his movie is below — you’ll dig it).
Later in the day I sat in on a Beauty/Fashion presentation from award-winning photographer Dixie Dixon and she was just terrific. She’s got really beautiful images, very cool behind-the-scenes videos (really well produced), and a very genuine, fun presentation style. She’s doing big work for big agencies and corporate clients, and creating some really wonderful images, and she’s just 22 years old. I picked up a few great ideas and tricks from her presentation, too! The crowd was totally with her the whole time (I already asked her to do a guest blog here, so you’ll hear more from her here soon). In the meantime, here’s one of her behind-the-scenes videos:
After that, two Nikon DSLR movie makers took the stage and brought up a slide showing that they created their movie using a crew of 120 people, and they had to close off like 8-blocks of a big city (and just how hard that was to do), and they listed all their expensive gear, and on and on. They basically took the opposite approach of Corey. Instead of saying, “Hey, you guys can do this!” they basically said “You’ll never be able to do this, so just sit back and soak in our awesomeness.” I’m sure their movie was amazing, but I left right then (Since I’ll never be able to do any of what they’re about to show, anyway).
(Above: Another iPhone shot — that’s Robert Beck in the Nikon Theater).
Lastly, I made it a point to come back and catch Sports Illustrated’s staff photographer Robert Beck and his presentation and it was terrific. He has some absolutely iconic sports images (it’s wild to see the image full screen first, and then in the next slide you see it on the cover of Sports Illustrated) and his stories and insights were awesome. Lots of great learning moments there, too (he said a few things that really resonated with me). Really glad I got to see him present.
All-in-all, I learned a ton in just those presentations and it was totally worth the trip up just for those.
The Gear Ahhhh, the gear. I wish I had had more time to visit booths and check out stuff, but I spent too time learning (LOL!!!). Here’s some cool stuff I did see:
(Above: It’s really exciting to come around a corner at the trade show and see one of your shots really big on the wall. This is the Elinchrom booth — iPhone photoby Matt Kloskowski).
Manfrotto (Elinchrom and Lastolite) I went by Elinchrom’s booth and they had the new updated strobes that are replacing my beloved BXRI 500′s (the new ones are just BXR 500) and they have a few nice new features and will be shipping next month if I remember right. Lastolite had some very clever new flash modifiers (snoots, brackets and stuff), and a very interesting gobo rig with drop-in patterns for creating interesting backgrounds. They also had some cool resizable softboxes (they convert from strip banks to rectangles, and octas and stuff). I’m continually impressed at Lastolite’s innovation in modifiers — they are really kind of leading the way these days.
Broncolor Lighting Broncolor and Hasselblad had an off-site exhibit (about a 10-minute walk from Photo Plus) called “Shoot NYC” and it was in this hip location where they set up all these different lighting set-ups (all based around a Ducati motorcycle, so they had the cycle lit, a cool helmet for a product shoot, and a racing boot at another shoot, and it was just a really cool theme and layout). I got to see the new Broncolor packs they intro’d at the show and I was really impressed.
F.J. Westcott They had introduced a 1000-watt LED-powered continuous light (it was small and round, more like a regular studio light) that looked really interesting. They’re going to send me one to review and I’ll let you guys know how it works but it was really incredibly bright and I’m looking forward to giving it a whirl.
Sony DSLRs They had a big presence again (though it didn’t seem nearly as big as last year’s), but they had a couple of presentation stages and I watched part of a session on shooting babies and they had an adorable, very well behaved little cutie there and the woman doing the shoot for Sony (Sorry, I wish I had her name), was very good and made some wonderful images live in the front of the crowd. Almost made me want to shoot babies. Almost. ;-)
(Above: You can see Canon’s Live Learning Stage on the left, with Wedding Photographer Denis Reggie giving a presentation. Great presenter and of course, fantastic wedding photographer).
Canon Canon’s booth was jammed, and they had lots of levels of depth, and a very cool “Car crash” scene you could film with their DSLRs. I only did a brief walk-through, but they had the type of booth you felt like you could really spend some time in just exploring. I can’t imagine what it cost.
(Above: A quick snap of Nikon’s Mad Science Lab set and actor. This guy would go non-stop for hours. Don’t know how it did it. Maybe he is “mad”).
Nikon Nikon was jammed as well, and they had a Nikon 1 stage with Salsa dancers, and a Fosse-like tap dancer (among others) and over at the DSLR side they an elaborate “Mad scientist’s” lab with an actor playing the part to a “T.” RC did an HDR of it, but here’s a quick snap from my iPhone in the meantime. They also had a tall platform where you could look through some really long glass, of course they had that awesome theater up front when you walked in the door.
Other booths Epson’s booth was big and hopin’; Peachpit Press had a booth and they were so busy I could only get one of them to even look my way. We had a NAPP booth there and I heard from our crew it was doing really well, so that was cool (stop by and see my brother Jeff — coolest brother ever — plus they have some show specials). Olympus had a fairly good size booth, but it was kind of buried behind the massive Nikon booth so unless you were standing in just the right place, you couldn’t see them. I saw the Sigma booth and they had a good crowd and a shooting theater too. Tried to get to see it, but got swept into an impromptu meeting and never got back over there.
Maddening Inspiration One thing that always strikes me about Photo Plus Expo — there are a LOT of fabulous images everywhere you look (they’re literally lining the walls of the Epson booth, and at MPIX Pro, and at every paper company, and on every flat-panel display in about every booth). It’s really inspiring to see so much great work, but at the same time, so much of it is so good that it makes me want to take all my gear and toss it in a dumpster. Weirder yet, simultaneous to feeling all that, I want to just run out and shoot (which is probably why my gear went with me on the plane instead of in a dumpster at 28th and 8th, which I briefly comtimplated). I would have like to spend another day or two there wrapped up in this “inspirational self-loathing” (hey, I coined a new phrase — I have a reason to live!) just to catch some more sessions and looking more to learn more.
Wrap Up Overall show seemed crowded everywhere I went, and everybody seemed to be having a great time (I sure did). I wish I’d had a chance to see more of the booths, but before I knew it, it was time to head for the airport (Matt and RC are still there tomorrow though, so keep an eye out for them, and trip them if you get a chance. They’re young. They can take it). By the way: Peter Hurley took an incredible headshot of Matt while he was up there. Matt actually didn’t look horribly grotesque, which I think says volumes about Peter’s work. ;-) By the way; we have a class coming out on Kelby Training Online from Peter that will totally rock!!!
I’m off Washington DC on Monday I’m already back home now (I told you it was a quick trip), and I’m off to Washington DC on Sunday (no football game — the Redskins on are the road) for my “Photoshop for Photographers” seminar on Monday (hopefully, I see some of you there: here’s the link if you want to come join me for the day), and I hope you all have an awesome weekend!!!
A Walk In Paris If you missed the webcast with Scott Kelby, Matt Kloskowski, and RC Concepcion the other night, it’s now available “on demand!” Join them as they discuss the Worldwide Photo Walk and Scott’s photo walk in Montmarte, Paris, as well as some post processing tips from Scott. You can watch it above, or head over to YouTube and see it there.
Leave a comment for your chance to win a ticket to one of these seminars!
Kelby Training Sales Don’t forget, you can still get 15% off all books and DVDs at the Kelby Training Store! All you have to do is use the promo code 15KTB for books or 15KTD for DVDs when you check out. And if you’re buying a book/DVD bundle, either code will work.
Plus, our apps are still on sale! For a limited time, you can grab Kelby Training Apps for 50% off. That’s a full class from one of your favorite instructors for just $4.99!
Leave a comment for your chance to win a free book and DVD.