Melanie Kern-Favilla won a legion of fans around the world Friday night at her gallery opening and in her live interview (with the always awesome Larry Becker). Melanie shared so much of herself, along with her techniques, and her life. She was so open and engaging, funny and charming, and such an inspiration to us all. Here are some of the comments from the folks who watched her interview online (I have it here for you, at the bottom of this post, but read the comments first).

Melanie shared so much of herself, along with her techniques, and her life as a photographer, storm chaser and engineer on the Long Island Rail Road. She was so open and engaging, funny and charming, and such an inspiration to us all. Here are some of the comments from the folks who watched her interview online (I have it here for you, at the bottom of this post, but read the comments first).

Here are some of the comments from photographers who watched her interview live online Friday evening (I have the replay here for you, at the bottom of this post, but read the comments first):

“Breathtaking art, inspirational, what a talent …I am so moved by this presentation. While watching I forgot that I was sitting at the computer screen, what an unforgettable evening.Stunning creativity, resourcefulness, photography, and post-processing.”

“Stunning creativity, resourcefulness, photography, and post-processing.”

“This webcast is a gift. Thanks so much!”

“I love your story, Mel. Gives me hope and drive to become a much better photographer. Thank you!”

“Wonderful interview. She is so cool.”

“Thank you for inspiring me to keep practicing. You are making a difference in my life, and it is very much appreciated.”

“Mel’s images are gorgeous! The KelbyOne Gallery? It’s flipping AMAZING! You guys rock! Love it!”

“Congratulations Melanie. I just had a look through your online gallery – awesome job – especially on the lighting.”

“Beautiful work and a great interesting interview.”

“Wow Melanie, what an experience! Fantastic!”

“Mel…you’re a shining star!”

“Stunning pix!!! Sorry to miss the opening….it was sold out!!!”

“The lighting is beautiful and the colors so deep and rich. Outstanding!”

“The eye of the artist. Congratulations. You nailed it!”

“What a diverse and talented photographer. You are awesome!”

“Awesome photography! Art at its best!”

“Lovely to see an acknowledgment about this photographer. It’s a wonderful world.”

“Can a photograph be art? Yes indeed, Melanie Kern-Favilla proves that it can.”

“What a great interview, she was so professional! You have another great career ahead.”

“Her work is stunning!”

Everything they said is spot on. I’m embedding the interview here (below). You will love it, laugh a lot, and learn a lot.

I’m embedding the interview here (below). You will love it, laugh a lot, and learn a lot.

Her interview is wonderful, and so is she. It was such an honor to have Melanie’s work gracing the walls of our gallery. Congratulations to Melanie (and to her very cool husband Dave who encouraged her to enter the international competition in the first place). Thanks to the awesome folks at Bay Photo Labs, whose printing and Xpozer system was once again, a huge hit — both the sheer quality of the printing, but also how the system stands off from the wall. Perfect for a gallery (I spent half the night explaining how it works).

I also want to give a special shout out to Kalebra whose idea it was to celebrate and share the work of our KelbyOne members (Here’s a link to her post about Melanie’s opening). It is so exciting to see her dream making other people’s dream come true.

We’ll be opening the entries for the next gallery show competition soon. Stay tuned for details.

Have a great week everybody. It’s off to a great start!

Best,

-Scott

Tonight Melanie Kern-Favilla, a Railroad Engineer from Long Island, New York, will have a solo gallery showing of her photography. How cool is that!

Yesterday when Melanie toured the gallery in preparation for tonight’s opening, something very special happened. It was the first time Melanie had ever even seen one of her images printed. Even more special is the fact that the first time she saw one of her images printed, it was hanging on a gallery wall. She was overwhelmed, and it was a heart-warming moment for Kalebra, Erik and me to experience with her, as Melanie and her husband Dave stood in the gallery and just took it all in.

Melanie already has a really fascinating job
She’s a Train Engineer. She’s not the conductor. She doesn’t punch your ticket. She’s up front, operating the train. She might just have the coolest job ever (said every kid who ever dreamed of being the train engineer on a big locomotive).

So, how did this Train Engineer for the Long Island Rail Road (the busiest commuter rail system in America), wind up having a solo gallery show of her photography?

She’s a KelbyOne member.

She entered her images in a photo competition — one created to celebrate and recognize the work of KelbyOne members — people for whom photography is a passion, love, art, but whose work perhaps hasn’t yet been discovered or shared with a wide audience. This would be a chance for a talented member to have their work displayed in an ideal setting and get exposed to a worldwide audience overnight. Who knows what doors that could open, and what opportunities that could present.

We wanted to create an experience both for KelbyOne members who visit the gallery tonight to enjoy Melanie’s images (during the wine and cheese reception at the gallery), and those around the world who will experience Melanie’s outstanding work for the first time during her one-on-one interview tonight with the awesome Larry Becker — during which  her words and images will reach a new audience, and new heights.

We are honored to be able to share Melanie’s story, her process, the art, and the artist tonight at her opening, and we invite you to join us online and be a part of it all.

The broadcast is free and open to everyone.

When: Tonight, Friday, July 21, 2017, at 8:00 PM EDT (New York Time)
Where: At kelbyone.com/gallery-webcast or on my Facebook page where it will be also streamed live.

You will love getting to know Melanie, her work; how she lit, post-processed, and created her stunning images, and I hope you can join us.

It won’t be long before we open the next gallery show competition…
…and if you’re a KelbyOne member, you too will have a chance for your own solo gallery show. Seeing Melanie standing in a gallery surrounded by her work was a thrill for us. I hope you’ll know that same feeling one day soon. :)

See you this evening at 8:00 pm. It will be a night to remember.

Lightroom Mobile From Start to Finish with Scott Kelby
Expand the power of Lightroom desktop to your mobile devices! Join Scott Kelby for an in-depth look at the latest round of updates for Lightroom Mobile. In this class Scott will help you get set up on the right foot, show you how to view your photos on mobile, how to add new photos from your camera roll, how to edit with the updated editing interface, how to share photos on the web, and so much more! This update has created the most desktop-like experience on mobile so far, and Scott gets you up to speed on all the new features and interface changes. All along the way Scott shares tips and tricks to help you get the most out of the experience. By the end of this class you’ll be able to use Lightroom anywhere you are, and on any device.

Upgrade Your Creative Workflow with the Adobe Mobile Apps with Bryan O’Neil Hughes
Get up to speed with the latest in Adobe’s fast growing suite of creative apps for your mobile devices! Join Bryan O’Neil Hughes as he demonstrates how these apps work, how they communicate with each other, and how they stay synchronized through the cloud. Starting on an iPhone, moving to a tablet, and then showing how your work can automatically be synced back to your desktop you’ll see how these apps give you the power to create new content, edit that content, access your existing content across your devices, and publish it to the world. Bryan wraps up the class with a sneak peek at what’s coming next. This class was released in March 2016, but much of it still applies to how you can get the most out of Adobe’s mobile apps!

Hello my name is Austin Burke and I am a food photographer in Orlando, Florida. I want to thank Scott and Brad for having me as a guest on the blog and to have the opportunity to share a bit of light on something that I think gets passed over.

Everyone loves to talk about fancy camera gear that we use on a shoot, but what about the other random tools that we use on set? I shoot a lot of food photography and while I always prefer to have a dedicated stylist on set, sometimes those responsibilities fall on me.

So when that happens I make sure to bring my tool box full of random tools that make styling projects manageable.

What’s in the box?
I bring this black toolbox with me on every set in addition to all my other gear. Inside, it contains a variety of easy to find items that I have found helpful when I am photographing food. This box covers most of the items I will need on my shoots, though sometimes I find myself in the garage building custom rigs as well.

Brushes
I keep a large variety of paintbrushes in my kit, all in different sizes, shapes, and texture. I use them for all sorts of things, from adding water or oils to food to make them shine, to brushing on sauces on meats or plates.

Tweezers & Chopsticks
It can be a challenge to style food, specially when some ingredients are the size of small seeds or crumbs. This is where tweezers and chopsticks come into play, being able to grab things with precision that would otherwise be a pain to pick up with your fingers. As an added bonus, wooden chopsticks can be used to stir a beer and make its frothy head reform, helpful when trying to get the perfect shot.

Butane Torch
Need to melt some cheese or toast some edges? That’s where the butane torch comes in handy, and you can find small ones that will easily fit in your kit. You can also break it out to make some creme brulee as well! Alternatively you can use a heat gun when styling food. Both give you a lot of control when working with food to make sure you don’t overcook anything.

Level & Measuring Tape
I always bring a level and measuring tape on every shoot to make sure I can keep track of the placement of where my camera and lights are. I then write all this information down and save it with the image files. The reason for this is if a client ever comes back wanting to shoot another project in the same style as something I have shot for them in the past, or they want the look similar to an image in my portfolio, I can easily recall the setup for that shot. It saves me a ton of time when a client comes back 3 years later wanting the exact same look and makes them happy when I can pull it off.

ToothPicks & Brass Wire
Sometimes food doesn’t want to cooperate, and that’s where these guys come in. Toothpicks are great for getting things to stand up and easy to hide in a scene. I find myself using them all the time when working with sandwiches as there are so many ingredients that need to stay still. The brass wire is great for hanging and rigging things up as it’s firm enough to hold things up in the air, but not too firm that you can’t mold into any shape you need. I recommend going for a neutral color wire so it doesn’t cast colors on set and is easy to clone stamp out.

Beverages
A cold drink goes well with a nice dish, which means I shoot a lot of beverages as well. And just like food, beverages need some help to look their best. The problem with making a drink look cold and refreshing is it doesn’t stay in that perfect state for very long and the ice will begin to melt. That’s where fake ice cubes and ice powder come in handy. And when it comes to fake ice cubes, it’s worth investing in good ones. I use a mixture of hand made acrylic and glass cubes so no one cube has the same look as another.

Ice isn’t the only way to make beverages look cold. You can also add some condensation to the glass. For this I find using a 1-part water and 1-part glycerin mixture perfect for condensation on a glass. I apply it using either a paintbrush or a small spray bottle. Lastly when it comes to beverages, I find using some food dye or kitchen bouquet great for getting the perfect color of a liquid, specially when you are shooting splash images.

Lastly we have cotton gloves, one of the most important items in the box. These gloves will help make sure you don’t leave finger prints on plates or glasses that would show up in your image. We wouldn’t want that now!

So I hope this list of items I use on almost every food shoot was helpful. With these tools you can make every dish look as delicious as it really is, which at the end of the day is my job as a food photographer.

What random tools have you ever found yourself using to make a delicious looking photo?

You can see more of Austin’s work at AustinBurke.photography, and follow him on Instagram and Vimeo.

Big news today — Adobe released a pretty major update to Lightroom Mobile with lots of long-awaited features making their way to Mobile, (and if you use Lightroom Mobile on your iPad, today’s an even better day for you).

Note: on the heels of this announcement, we’re releasing my new “Lightroom Mobile: Start to Finish” online course today, too! KelbyOne members will be able to watch it later this morning (or you can take the 10-day free trial if you’re not a member, and watch it today, as well). 

In the meantime, I made a quick “first look” video for you going over the new features and interface (below), but before we get to there, in short here’s what’s new:

  • The Adjustment Brush is here (Awwwww, yeah!) and it rocks! Great implementation (see the video below). Plus, if you have an iPhone with 3D Touch support, it’s pressure sensitive when “painting” with your finger, and if you have an  iPad Pro, it supports the Apple Pencil’s pressure sensitivity.
  • You can now Erase areas in the Radial and Graduated Filter  (like you can on desktop Lightroom)
  • Full Featured Sharpening is here (the full panel from Desktop Lightroom CC with all the same sliders)
  • The Noise Reduction Panel is here, too!
  • Cool ‘Haptic Feedback’ feature for straightening images while aiming built-in camera app
  • Live Clipping Warning (via a Zebra pattern) while shooting with the built-in camera app
  • All new updated Android phone interface, designed to be most “Android-y” UI for Lightroom Mobile yet, with a faster, more natural Android feel throughout the App.
  • The iPad gets the new “more Lightroom CC-like” user interface introduced in the iPhone previously (seen at the top of this post).

There’s a few other smaller tweaks and enhancements, and some things are more discoverable thanks to the update interface. Take a look at the video before for a quick look:

Adobe has not yet released the new user interface for Android tablet’s yet, but hopefully, that won’t be too far behind.

Hope you enjoyed this first look, and I invite you to check out my new Lightroom Mobile: Start to Finish course that comes out today at KelbyOne. 

Have a totally updated mobile day, ya’ll! :)

-Scott

I’m working on a post for later this morning, that I promise will be a lot more interesting than this non-interesting post, so if you would be so kind as to come back around 11:00 AM EST today, I will have a cool video for you.

Also, if you’re a KelbyOne member, there is a special Member’s Only Webcast today at 11:00 am (check your member’s dashboard, or keep an eye out for an email from us with details), and joining me will be CFG (Cool Frenchy Guy) Serge Ramelli (and no, there’s not a new Lightroom CC update coming today, so don’t everybody get all riled up). :)

OK, I gotta run – gotta finish this post for later this morning.

See you in a while!

-Scott

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