Tuesday
Feb
2013
12

Blind Critiques on The Grid

by Scott Kelby  |  0 Comments

Tomorrow, February 13 is Blind Critique day on The Grid! Matt and I will be joined by landscape, travel, and humanitarian photographer Colby Brown, so those are the types of images we’ll be choosing to critique tomorrow.

If you’d like to have your travel and landscape photos considered for tomorrow’s blind critiques (we show your images but don’t mention your name on the air), just leave us a link to your images AT THIS ADDRESS: http://kelbytv.com/thegrid/critique/

That’s the only place we’ll be picking images from, so don’t leave a comment here to submit your photos. Go there and pay close attention to the instructions at the top of the page for the best chance at being picked for critique.

We’ll pick 20 or so photographers’ work to go over on the show, and the live show is broadcast tomorrow at 4:00 pm ET. (Here’s a world time-zone calculator: http://bit.ly/JUuYUj — use New York City as our time zone). See you on The Grid!

Tuesday
Feb
2013
12

Shooting Exotic Sports Cars at the duPont Registry

by Scott Kelby  |  50 Comments

Above: A Lamborghini Gallardo shot at the duPont Registry Headquarters in Clearwater, Florida.

When I was at Photoshop World in Las Vegas last September, I ran into an old friend, Manuel Obordo (literally, the guy who taught me Photoshop —- if you’ve heard any interviews about how I got started in this business, you’ve heard me tell the story of Manuel).

Manuel is the duPont Registry magazine’s Director of Technology (the duPont Registry is a luxury car and lifestyle magazine that’s hugely popular here in the USA, and I’ve been reading it, and drooling over the cars in it, as long as I can remember). When I saw him I asked if I could come and shoot some of their collection of cars (I had heard they always have all kinds of cool, and man did they ever). So, on Friday Brad and I went and did a location scouting trip out to their headquarters, and then yesterday Brad and I shot there from 2:00 pm to around 5:30 — all with just one strobe (an Elinchrom Ranger Quadra and then when its battery finally ran out from shooting at full power the whole time, a regular ol’ Elinchrom Ranger for the last car), and just one softbox — a 5-foot stripbank. That’s it.)

Above: A detail shot of a Ferrari’s F-430′s wheel.

Above: Here’s the rear of the Ferrari, lit so just the highlights show. It didn’t hurt that the Ferrari was already black. Also, there’s this program called Photoshop that helped here a bit, too).

Above: Here’s a behind-the-scenes shot so you can see the full rig. That’s Brad Moore with our strip bank and flash mounted on a monopod. The Ranger battery back is on the floor. If you’re wondering how the background went so solid black, it’s because I’m using the camera settings and techniques I learned from a KelbyTraining.com class from Award-winning commercial automative photographer Tim Wallace. I used an f/stop (in this case, f/22) and I got the softbox close enough to a very quick fall-off to the light. I used my Nikon D800 for this shoot so I would have loads of detail and file size.

So, while there are rows and banks of florescent lights above us, and through my view finder I can see the stacks of boxes in the background, and I can see right out the large windows, when I fire the flash, it crushes down the ambient light to nothing and only the light from the strobe lights the car. If you watch Tim’s class, you’ll totally get the technique. It doesn’t hurt to have really cool cars to use it on, though.

Above: Same light, but I had Brad move over to the left a bit and place the softbox at an angle to this view of the Ferrari and the engine compartment in the rear. Those highlights are the soft box reflecting in the car’s rear hood and glass.

Above: Here’s a close-up detail shot using a Macro lens; hand held with the same lighting set-up and settings.

Above: Here’s the set up I used for the hood shot, and for headlight detail shots.

Above: The previous five photos use the same everything; we’re just moving around the car. The cars were parked together really tightly and we couldn’t move the cars, so it made it pretty challenging some times (well, for Brad anyway).

Above: They also had a rare Corvette Sting Ray with Split Rear windows and I couldn’t help but get a few shots.

Above: Here’s one of the rear views [stop snicker -- I meant the car] — still only that one soft box — the reflections are doing double-duty.

Above: Here’s a Behind-the scenes shot, and Brad is wearing the Elinchrom Quadra Ranger battery pack over his shoulder on the right. This was our first time with the new Lithium Ion battery and we couldn’t believe how light that battery pack was with it. Brad was super-diggin’ it.

Above: They also had a brand new Fisker Karma (first time I’d see one in person up close), so I wanted to shoot it as well. It’s hard shooting a white car, so we warmed up on this car. I only got a handful of shots I liked but at the end of the shoot I got this one I liked.

Above: To get the perspective you saw in the last shot I needed to lay down on the ground, and Brad mounted the softbox on a boom stand and put it just a little bit in front of the car, as seen here. I’m shooting tethered directly into Lightroom for most of the day, but later we were “runnin’ and gunnin’ so I shot directly to the card in my camera. This gives you an idea of how tight the quarters were to get side shots of the cars.

I took a lot more images, including images of a Harley Davidson Sportster and that 1937 Lincoln Zephyr on the left of the Karma I’m shoot, but I’m running out of space here.

My thanks to Tim Wallace — a brilliant teacher, amazing photographer, and terrific guy because I wouldn’t’ be shooting this stuff without learning his techniques first, so if any of them look OK, Tim deserves the credit.

Above: That’s me with Manuel “Manny” Obordo at Photoshop World last year. He’s usually much more smiley than he appears here. He’s a totally cool guy, smart as anything, and you don’t want to play him in golf  – especially for money. 

Also, a big thanks to Tom duPont, all the patient crew at the duPont Registry magazine, and especially my buddy Manuel Obordo (shown with me above) who not only made this shoot happen, but 20-something years ago taught me how to use the Pen tool, which I always felt was the biggest breakthrough I had in learning Photoshop, and the whole Photoshop thing has worked out pretty well for me so far, so although thanks isn’t nearly enough Manny…thanks!

Monday
Feb
2013
11

Join Me Wednesday Night for 90-minutes of the Coolest Photoshop Tips and Tricks Yet! (and it’s free!)

by Scott Kelby  |  9 Comments

Do you totally love Photoshop tips & tricks? Me too!
That’s probably why our NAPP-a-Thon a few months ago broke records. So much so, that we’re going it again, but this time it’s a “Photoshop World-a-Thon” where we’ll be sharing a ton Photoshop tips LIVE from 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM ET this Wednesday night.

It’s 90-minutes of cool Photoshop tricks to give folks an idea of what it’s like to be at the Photoshop World Conference & Expo (coming up in Orlando on April 17-19 at the Orange County Convention Center).

PLUS, we’re giving away a Full Conference Pass to someone watching live EVERY 10 MINUTES!!!!

BUT, it’s getting crazier than that! We’re giving away everything from hotel room nights in Orlando during the conference to Walt Disney World tickets, to lots of cool stuff from the exhibitors that will be on our Expo Floor.

ALSO: We’ll be running some sweet deals on full conference passes, too so you don’t want to miss any of it!

It’s going to be a blast, so join me and the gang this WEDNESDAY night!

Who: Matt, RC, Corey, Pete, and Me (“The Photoshop Guys”)
What: A 90-minute love-fest of our favorite cool Photoshop tips
Where:  RSVP right here: http://photoshopworld.com/webcasts/ 
When: This Wednesday (two days from now) at 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm ET
(Here’s a world time-zone calculator: http://bit.ly/JUuYUj – use New York City as our time zone).
Why: We hope that when you learn all this cool stuff, and get a preview of what it’s like at Photoshop World (we’re each going to preview some stuff from the classes we’re teaching), that you’ll say, “Yeah, this is the year….I’m going!” If you already want to go to Photoshop World — awesome — here’s where you can sign up now (and save $100 with an Early Bird discount on your Full Conference Pass).

Hope you’ll join us there on Wednesday! We’re gonna get tipsy! (wah, wah, wahhhh).

Thanks,

-Scott

P.S. Can you please invite your friends? Everyone’s welcome and we want to get as many people to tune in as possible. Many thanks in advance. 

Friday
Feb
2013
08

It’s “A Bunch of Stuff” Friday (and I made the Top 10. Woot!)

by Scott Kelby  |  23 Comments

Hi Gang: Not really one big topic today, but here’s a bunch of quick stuff that’s going on:

A big thanks to the readers of Shutter magazine, who named me as one the Top 10 Most Influential in the Industry (I came in at #6). I am very grateful to everyone who voted for me, and to Shutter who did a feature on each of the top 10, and I included some caps of their article about me below (here’s the link to the article in Shutter, where you can read the interview and see all the winners, which included my buddy Joe McNally).

“10 Tips for Creating a Successful Portfolio”
Cliff Mautner (named one of the Top 10 Wedding Photographers in the World” by American Photo magazine) was our in-studio guest this week on “The Grid” (our free weekly show for photographers) and this episode is getting a lot of buzz. Our Topic was “10 Tips for Creating a Successful Portfolio” and Cliff was the perfect guest because of his insights into the world of wedding photography. Great episode and if you missed it, you can watch it right below.

 

The US Navy retweeted my Carrier Shot blog post
When I saw this on Twitter:

“@scottkelby got a once in a lifetime chance – take photos aboard CVN77. This AWESOME photos & blog –> ow.ly/htX1J”

I was so excited, and so honored, and just totally psyched!!!! Whoo Hooo!!!!

The Evolution of an On-Location Portrait Session
Our good friend Rick Sammon has a wonderful post today over on his blog called “The Evolution of an On-Location Portrait Session.” The images and behind-the-scenes stuff are terrific, and there are some real learning moments. Also, if you’re already a Kelby Training Online subscriber, make sure you check out Rick’s online classes (they have been really rockin’!).  Anyway, if you’ve got a sec, check out Rick’s post right here: http://bit.ly/14BTX67

Above: One of Rick’s shots from his post. Very cool stuff!

Tutorial: How to control the panning of still images and video in Photoshop CS6
Check out this Awesome Photoshop tutorial from our friend (and NAPP Photoshop Guru) Nicole S. Young for people who edit DSLR Video in Photoshop CS6 (and CS6 is perfect for photographers who want to edit video without learning a whole video editing program). Here’s the link: Way to rock it Nicole!!!! :-)

Big shout out to “Weekly Photo Tips” for their in-depth review of our magazine for photographers using hot shoe flash and studio lighting: “Light It Magazine” for iPad (above).

My favorite line from the review? It’s where they said:

“If I could only have one photography publication, it would be Light It, hands down.” Woot!!! :)

Here’s the link if you’ve got a second: http://bit.ly/YGBLVN

Psyched to see one of my shots from the aircraft carrier make PhotoExtract.com’s
“8 Top Google+ Photographs” list for January 29th!

Here’s the link: http://www.photoextract.com/plus-extract/2013/1/29 (Whoo Hoo!). :-)

Man, it’s be an amazing few weeks!!!!! My feet still aren’t touching the ground.

Thanks everybody for all your support, kind comments, and good vibes this past few weeks. Here’s wishing you a super-kick-butt weekend and we’ll see ya back here on Monday.

Cheers! -–Scott

P.S. Don’t make plans for Wednesday night — we’ve got something fun brewing! :-)

Thursday
Feb
2013
07

It’s Free Stuff Thursday!

by Brad Moore  |  115 Comments

Peter Hurley – Mastering Headshot Photography
SHABANG! The latest class in the KelbyTraining.com library is Peter Hurley’s Mastering Headshot Photography, but don’t let the name fool you… If you photograph people AT ALL, you need to watch this class. Peter doesn’t focus on lighting or the technical aspects of his shoots, he focuses on the people in front of his camera. Watch as he works his magic to pull great expressions and emotions from his subject, and learn how the smallest thing can make the difference between an okay picture and a great photograph.

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

Kelby Training Live
Want to spend a day with Matt Kloskowski, RC Concepcion, or Ben Willmore? Check out these seminar tours!

Lightroom 4 Live with Matt Kloskowski
Feb 20 – Arlington, TX
Feb 22 – Atlanta, GA
Mar 22 – Phoenix, AZ

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers with RC Concepcion
Feb 27 – Richmond, VA
Mar 15 – Tampa, FL
Mar 25 – Houston, TX

Photographic Artistry with Adobe Photoshop with Ben Willmore
Mar 19 – New York, NY
Mar 20 – Washington, DC

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

Cliff Mautner Lighting and Skillset Bootcamp
Want to spend a couple of days with Cliff Mautner in London? This summer is your chance!

When: June 11th and 12th
Where: Moor Park, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire WD3 1QN
Why: It will empower photographers with the skills needed to obtain a style of their own.

The workshop is limited to 20, and more information can be found on Cliff’s blog. You can send an email to cliff@cmphotography.com with questions or to register.

Leave a comment for your chance to win a free rental of one of Cliff’s KelbyTraining.com classes!

Nikon Capture NX 2
Want to learn how to edit your photos using Nikon’s Capture NX 2 software? Check out this class from Scott Diussa to see how you can take full advantage of this powerful, yet easy to use program.

And, leave a comment for your chance to win a free pass for this class!

Winner
Lightroom 4 Live Ticket
- JessicaD

Photoshop CS6 for Photographers Live Ticket
- KC

Wednesday
Feb
2013
06

It’s Guest Blog Wednesday featuring Austin Mann!

by Brad Moore  |  26 Comments


Photo by JerSean Golatt

A big thanks to Scott for his leadership and for the tremendous effort he puts into designing incredible resources that sharpen artists all over the world…You rock man.

You may know me as a travel photographer and story teller for change… most of the client work I do is in effort to improve quality of life for people in material poverty. I work a ton in Africa & Asia and love to create & shoot campaigns for initiatives like clean water projects, education, church expansion, clean wood-burning stoves and more. I feel strongly that we are called to use what we’ve been given to invest in others and up to last year, I did that mostly with my camera.


In northern Kenya with Paradigm Project, on assignment to capture the experience of cooking indoors over an open fire.

In 2011, I changed sleeping locations nearly 150 times…just about every other day. I loved it — I got to see some incredible things happening all over the world and make friends in some really cool places.


Philemon, my new friend and host in Fiji.

The Need & Dream
At the end of the year, I was sitting at a deli with my Dad dreaming about 2012… how could I use what I’ve been given to broaden my impact? One thing was certain: I wasn’t going to move faster or shoot more… but what if I shifted my focus a bit?

I’ve always really enjoyed enabling others as best I can… being behind the scenes feeding them knowledge and tools (usually geek stuff) to help them to succeed. It’s gotta be my favorite thing in the world. As we sat there, we began to dream about a a whole new way to accomplish that.

At that point, I saw (and still see) freelancers & independent creatives conducting business at home or at coffee shops all over the country… Some people are happy with working from home and others aren’t… but happy or not, lack of access to inspirational people and tools to create inhibits our ability to run with the creative muscles we’ve been given.

For my own career, the single greatest thing that has and continues to enable me is connecting with others. Talking with them. Learning from them. Being sharpened, inspired & encouraged by their complimentary skill-sets.

Years ago, photographers would hang out at the lab together as they developed photographs… there they would build friendships, working relationships and businesses together. It’s there that they would be inspired to spontaneously create, dream new ideas and find food for their creative soul.

In this digital age where we develop images isolated on our Macs and everyone is satisfied with Twitter follows and Facebook likes, what if there were a REAL PLACE, a physical hub that facilitated camaraderie? What if there were a place designed specifically to enable creative people?

I looked and found nothing quite like this… so about a year ago, I decided to put my travel photography work on hold and take a somewhat scary leap of faith into creating what we now call WELD.

Thanks to my cousin Brandon, co-founder of WELD, we had an awesome space in no time. I can remember sitting in the 10,000 square feet of white walls and concrete floors for hours on end dreaming about what this place could be.

The fun thing is, even before launch we began seeing beautiful collaborations taking place. Talented people came out of the woodwork to bring their gifts to the table and help make it happen. We all worked together to dream about the space, build it and shape it… all along the way shooting fun little art projects on the side. We began to discover the magic of being together, of creating together and of constant collaboration.


WELD’s communal workspace aka the bullpen. 

We opened in June and today WELD is a collaborative work & shoot space that exists for one reason: to enable creatives to create. WELD does this by connecting them to like-minded people, equipping them w/ tools and giving them a place to hone their craft within a community instead of alone.

From the moment we opened our doors, people at WELD began to dream with the abilities of their peers instead of just their own — and beautiful things have come out of it.  Member collaborations continue to flow and every day I’m more excited to go in and see what’s being dreamed up.

The Creative Struggle
All these things have been incredible and I’m so proud to be a part of what WELD is and will be but it hasn’t been without it’s challenges. I’m up here writing this at 4:01 AM because there’s a billion things to be done, very few of which directly relate to things I’m most passionate about.

I’m constantly navigating the unexpected, inventing solutions, executing mundane tasks, troubleshooting problems… but something keeps relentlessly fueling my fire: vision.

I see so many people give up when their creative project doesn’t go as planned. QUIT DOING THAT. If you’re project is worthwhile you will always encounter a force against you and you’ll never get anywhere if you don’t passionately stick to your vision.

Don’t give up when it’s tough… by it’s very nature it will be tough. If achieving your goal was easy, someone else will have already done it and it wouldn’t even be vision, it’d be reality.

There will always be Resistance, working against you…to discourage you, to deflate you, to tell you your stupid, to distract you. Don’t accept that. Dominate it.

If Scott had given up on Photoshop when he couldn’t figure out the Pen tool in the early ‘90s, you wouldn’t be reading this. If FedEx had given up when they had $5K left in their bank account, global courier service wouldn’t be the same today.  If George Lucas had given up when everyone told him his film was too wacky, we wouldn’t have Star Wars.

Do I put myself in the same class as these guys? Not for a second. But you know what kept them going and pushed them past the Resistance? Vision. Vision for the possibilities of digital image editing. Vision for the first ever overnight delivery service… vision for a beautifully told story of galaxies and lasers and love.

The WELD Vision
The vision for WELD is pretty simple: to help creators achieve their vision.

Whether that’s a single image, a film or a full-blown business, WELD is a streamlined hub to help artists create something from nothing. It exists to reduce friction in the creative workflow to grow your vision and get you there faster. It’s a place to feed starving artists and rejuvenate the plump ones. To thrust freelancers into previously unchartered frontier.


Above: One of WELD’s fully equipped studio spaces where members have collaborated to create visions like this piece below: 


Created by Chris Titze

WELD is designed to be an environment where the first scene of Star Wars could be conceived, written & shot. Even now, creative businesses are thriving here… we’ve already seen feature length films, international non-profit campaigns, iOS apps and more born at WELD. I just can’t wait to see what’s in store for this place.

I hope and pray WELD will continue thrive here in Dallas but also grow across the country and impact thousands of artists and millions more through their work.   I can’t stop dreaming about the possibilities.  About the ideas conceived, the relationships built, the business strengthened, the stories told and the lives changed through the visions achieved by WELDERS.

Whatever your vision may be, don’t accept not trying… and when you try, refuse to quit. Don’t give in to Resistance… focus on what you were made to do and do it — if you persevere, there will be no end to the beauty you will create.

_______

Update: We are hosting a free happy hour on Friday (Feb 8th) at WELD. We are live screening of one of Kelby Training’s in-studio lighting workshops with Joe McNally (huge thanks to Scott for permission to do so!) Wine & cheese provided. Come out, pick up some studio tips and meet some awesome creative people just like you… hope to see you there.  details here.  http://weld.co/blog/

Thanks again to Scott & Brad for this opportunity to share — hope to see you at the upcoming happy hour!

- Austin Mann

Learn more about WELD and the artists here.

Keep up with Austin via Twitter & Instagram. And he’d love to hear from you! Shoot him a note about anything at hello@austinmann.com

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