Monday
May
2013
27

A Day To Honor Our Nation’s Fallen Soldiers

by Scott Kelby  |  3 Comments

Today is Memorial Day in the United States, and our offices are closed as we honor and remember those who gave their lives in service to our country.

This post is also dedicated each year to the memory of David Leimbach, (shown above; the brother of our friend and colleague Jeff Leimbach), who died five years ago in combat in Afghanistan.

Just a humble word of thanks to the dedicated men and women of our armed services and to all those who came before them who laid down their lives to protect the freedoms we enjoy each day.

Friday
May
2013
24

Today Triple Scoop Music is launching my Signature Music Collection for Landscape & Travel

by Scott Kelby  |  10 Comments

I’ve been a fan of Triple Scoop Music even since I heard some of the instructors at Photoshop World using their royalty-free music tracks in their photo slideshow presentations. As a musician myself, I am just so impressed with the quality of their  tracks — their stuff is “the real deal.” That’s why I was so psyched when they asked me to put together a Signature Collection of  their music tracks that I thought would be perfect for landscape and travel photography slideshows and videos.

The “Scott Kelby Signature Series Vol 1 – Landscape and Travel Collection” launched today to coincide with my Los Angeles “Shoot Like a Pro Tour” today in LA. If you follow this link, you can go to their site and preview some of the music tracks in my collection right on their page (for those of you that caught my “Connecting with Cuba” presentation, you’ll recognize that wonderful Cuban-music track from my slideshow).

Other Signature Series Photographers
It’s an honor to be alongside some of the amazing photographers who have curated Signature Series Collections for Triple Scoop including: Jerry Ghionis, Joe McNally, Tamara Lackey, Dane Sanders, Denis Reggie, Bill Frakes, Lori Nordstrom, and Bambi Cantrell (among others). Here’s a link to see all the Signature Collections.

I really spent a lot of time carefully picking tracks because I wanted to create a collection that would work for a wide variety of presentations (their music library is pretty vast), and I hope you’ll check them out if you get a chance. My humble thanks to Roy Ashen at Triple Scoop Music for the opportunity (Roy’s a musician too!) and to everyone at TSM for creating such a cool resource for photographers.

 

Thursday
May
2013
23

It’s Free Stuff Thursday!

by Brad Moore  |  207 Comments

The Digital Photography Book Part 1 – Second Edition
Okay, Scott already announced the release of the new version of his best-selling book, The Digital Photography Book Part 1 – Second Edition. But since today is Free Stuff Thursday, I figured we would give away FIVE FREE copies to some lucky commenters! Whether you already have the first edition and just want the latest version, or if you want to give a copy to a friend, or if you just don’t have any version of this book and want it, leave a comment for your chance to win! Or, you can head over to KelbyTraining.com, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you like to buy great books and buy a copy!

Kelby Training Live
Want to spend a day with Scott Kelby or RC Concepcion? Check out these seminar tours!

The Shoot Like A Pro Tour with Scott Kelby
May 23 – Seattle, WA
May 24 – Los Angeles, CA

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers with RC Concepcion
June 12 – Nashville, TN
June 17 – Ottawa, ON
June 19 – Toronto, ON
June 21 – Calgary, AB
June 26 – New Orleans, LA

Leave a comment for your chance to win a ticket to one of these events!

Hollywood Film Tools for Photographers with Mike Kubeisy
The newest addition to the KelbyTraining.com library of classes is Hollywood Film Tools for Photographers with Mike Kubeisy! Mike has been a photographer in Hollywood for a number of years, photographing on the sets of CSI (and all of its versions), NCIS, just about any other medical/crime show you can think of! Join him as he takes you through his Hollywood toolbox and shows you all the things he uses to create amazing images. This class will be up sometime today, so check it out at KelbyTraining.com!

Leave a comment for your chance to win a free rental of this class!

Winners
Zack Arias Class Rental
- Brian Rusinko

Kelby Training Live Ticket
- Davlan Shaw

Introduction to Adobe Creative Cloud eBook
- Holly T.

WPPI On The Road Ticket
- Cheryl Tadin

How To Become A Professional Wedding Photographer DVD from Fstoppers
- Maarten Mennes

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

Wednesday
May
2013
22

It’s Guest Blog Wednesday featuring Vincent Versace!

by Brad Moore  |  36 Comments


Photo by Douglas Dubler

A Tale of Two Photos

Once a year, on the anniversary of Guest Blog Wednesday, Scott affords me the opportunity to share some thoughts. All I can say is that it is a good thing that he gives me a year between these guest blog posts. Once again, thank you, Scott, for your gracious generosity.

Tale 1

 

Of all of the images I have or will take in my life, I suspect “Paris in Snow” will be by far my most iconic. It is the cover of my book From Oz to Kansas, and Epson uses it as the image on their worldwide packaging of Cold Press Natural paper. So the image has received some airplay.

This image is one of the best examples I have of how to capture “timelessness” in a photograph. There is no way to tell if the image was shot yesterday, one, 10, 50 or 100 years ago. This has to do with an observation I made several years back when photographing New York City: “modern” happens four stories and below, and “timeless” happens four stories and above. The shops at street level come and go, fashions change, cars change, and the banners that get hung for this or that special event all tend to be hung from the floor of the fourth story (or the ceiling of the third if you want to be picky) and below. But the truth of the city and the age of its creation all live four stories (from the floor up) and above. Case in point: in this image, I am nine stories up, and I am shooting down toward the fourth story of the buildings in the foreground.

Note: This is also an ExDR image (Extended Dynamic Range). Not merely an HDR image (High Dynamic Range). For me, HDR images tend to be ones that scream “I AM AN HDR IMAGE!!!” and are an exercise in how to make a photograph look like a Harry Potter set. Just because something looks weird does not make it art. It just means it looks weird. In this image, the dynamic ranges of focus, time, and gesture have been extended. The goal of any technique is that when the image is completed you cannot see the technique in the image.

But I digress…. Back to the tale of this image.  Continue reading

Tuesday
May
2013
21

Motorcycle Shoot (behind-the-scenes)

by Scott Kelby  |  19 Comments

(Above) Here’s a behind-the-scene shot from Friday’s shoot.  This is a three-light shoot: Two 4-foot strip banks above (with Elinchrom strobes), and there’s one additional softbox in front (you can see the light-stand right behind my laptop) that’s putting some extra light on the engine — it was a little dark in there with just the two strobe directly above the bike.

I asked my Creative Director Felix Nelson if I could shoot his Harley, but he was doing some serious tinkering with it at home and it wouldn’t be ready for days, so he suggested calling our guitar player (Felix is the bass player for Big Electric Cat), Tony Llanes since he builds custom choppers.
He didn’t have one available, but his cousin had this “Big Dog!” chopper and he came rolling up on it Friday and I was like, “Oh Yeah baby!” Only had  1-1/2 hrs to light and shoot this and his buddy’s sports bike (the yellow one seen below), but I got it done in time to attend my son’s sports banquet that night, so it’s all good. :)

Above:
Shooting from down low with a 14-24mm lens. 
Above: More wide angle 14-24mm shots.
Above: You can see the two extra backlights in this shot, used strickly to make the background solid white — even though they weren’t turned on for any of the shots I’ve shown so far. 
Above: Here’s what it looks like with the two background strobes turned on. You can see why I left them off for nearly the entire shoot — I think this particular bike, because of its color, looks better on the dark gray background. 
Above: The Sport Bike looks great on the solid white background, so here it look appropriate (so this is a five-light shoot: The same two strip-banks over head; the one small 27″ softbox in front aiming at the back half of the bike, and the two bare bulbs with reflectors to make the background solid white. 
Above: Here’s a view from the backside. Since I’m not shooting it straight on, the lighting definitely looks different (in fact, I had to brighten it in post to get it this bright). 
Above: Here’s Tony (lead guitar player for Big Electric Cat) posing on the Big Dog. I didn’t change the lighting — it’s just the lighting for the bike, so it’s not the greatest portrait lighting, but I think it’s still looks decent (but if I was lighting this as a portrait, I would have added two kicker lights in the back aiming at him. 
Anyway, there’s a quick look at the shoot. I’m doing a tutorial for the NAPP member Website on the retouching and finishing for getting rid of the apple-crate box the bike is sitting on, and on getting rid of some of the spots, specs, dust and junk. Hope you all have a fantastic Tuesday! :)

Monday
May
2013
20

The 2nd Edition “Refresh” of my “Digital Photography Book, Part One” is here

by Scott Kelby  |  17 Comments

OK, if you already have the first edition of the book, DON’T BUY THIS ONE!!!! That’s because it’s a “refresh” and not a “rewrite.”

The original book was published back in 2006, so I brought the book up-to-date with a pretty significant refresh using today’s latest cameras, updates and changes in gear; plus I added a short chapter with some advice I’ve learned since then; I went through and updated all the photos  (man, it’s excruciating to look back at the images you were taking seven years ago), and techniques where needed throughout, and I re-wrote from scratch the most popular chapter, the “Photo Recipes” chapter with all new images and descriptions (because again, I hated those old photos from 2006).

So, as much as I’d love you to rush out and buy a copy….
I want to keep you as a reader and that means being straight with you, which is why I’m letting you know it’s still essentially the same book. So, why am I mentioning it at all if I don’t want you to buy it? This is the book of mine that given as a gift to other new photographers more than any other, so if you’re thinking of passing one on to someone new, I want to make sure you get them the latest edition (it says “Part 1, 2nd edition” right on the cover — see below right).

Also, it’s no longer “Volume 1, or Volume 2″
After the original book, subsequent releases were named Volume 2, Volume 3 and so on, but what I found was people were buying Volume 4 because it was the newest one, but actually each one is completely different and picks up where the previous title left off, so by starting with Volume 4, they were missing all that essential stuff up front that leads up to it. In fact, some folks complained that Volume 4 was too advanced for them, but that’s because they weren’t ready for Volume 4 yet — they needed to start with Volume 1 and work their way up. That’s why we changed it now to Part 1, Part 2 and so on (I’d much rather someone bought Volume 1 and ever bought another, than starting with Part 4 and being lost).

It’s here. Now.
It just went “in-stock” this week:

> Amazon and Barnes & Noble have the Print edition for $13.90

> Amazon has it for the Kindle at $9.99 and B&N has it for the Nook at $11.39

> Peachpit Press (the book’s Publisher) has a bundle (both print book & ebook together) for $26.99

I hope if there’s someone you’d like to help along the way in their photographic journey, you’d consider picking up a copy for them. Of course, if you don’t have the original, snap this puppy up now! LOL!! :)

Thanks to everyone out there who has made this book, Part One, the top-selling digital photography book of all time. I thank you. My kid’s college fund thanks you (My son’s off the college in just two years. My daughter still has…well…about 11-more years to go. Maybe I’ll have a Part 10 by then). ;-)

All my best,

-Scott

P.S. If you already have one or more of the books, come and see me in Seattle this Thursday or in Los Angeles on Friday with my “Shoot Like a Pro Tour” which is based on this very same series of books. Here’s the link if you want to come out.

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