Hello, and a warm and glorious #TravelTuesday to you all! I’m Dave Williams, I’m here every Tuesday, and today I have some notices for you to begin:

My new class is out on KelbyOne! If you want to create a cinematic look for your drone photography, go check it out right here!

I’m delivering a Photoshop Masterclass on November 14th in Hatfield, UK. Bag your ticket right here.

And, I’m hosting a webinar all about travel photography with the Facebook group, Photography and Photoshop this Saturday. Full details are here.

Finally, being unable to run a Photowalk this year for Scott’s WWPW, I’m teaming up with my brother from another mother, Peter Treadway, to run a walk in London on November 18th. There are prizes on offer from KelbyOne, Platypod, and BlackRapid. Full details are here.

Now, on with the show! The title here is “Photo Police” because, recently, I had an experience with Peter whereby we were chased down. I still get a little emotional, to be honest, so bear with me while I recall this traumatic experience.

We were in Gatwick Airport in the UK and Peter was making a video. He had his DSLR attached with a Joby Gorillapod to the top handle of his roller case and was basically just shooting our journey through the airport, which he would then speed up in post and use as B-roll footage to a wider, much more epic video. Whilst we were walking through the duty-free shop, we heard a very nervous “excuse me” coming from behind us, but proceeded on our route and thought nothing of it. The “excuse me” became louder and louder, and nobody else was stopping to react, so perhaps it was intended for us. I say us; I mean Peter.

We both turned and saw that, indeed, the “excuse me” had been intended for us and it was coming from a whole medley of staff wearing different uniforms, one of whom was a manager and another was security. We were told that we weren’t allowed to film in this area, so being the polite and understanding chaps that we are, we agreed to stop immediately without question. But, what happened next was strange—we were asked to delete the footage. We both took a brief glance at each other and in sync, we shook our heads and said, “No.” I explained that, albeit we were on private property, an airport here in the UK is treated as a public place owing to its right of access, and there were no signs visible as a condition of entry, stating that we were not allowed to take photographs or make video. After all, there are hundreds of people taking selfies and making videos in the airport all day, every day, and we weren’t making the video for anything other than personal use.

Wanting to avoid confrontation, we started to walk away but were told, again, to delete the footage. Once again we refused, but this time we were told that they were going to get the police involved. Both of us clearly thinking, “yeah, sure” we walked away again, but this time committed. You’ll never guess what happened next…

So, we were in Starbucks, where I was fuelling up and getting my caffeine fix, when out of nowhere two officers approached us, asked us about our video, and to whom we gave a detailed and frank explanation. The two of them had no problem whatsoever with the explanation we gave, were quite understanding, and tried to spin the reason for stopping us from a public safety point of view. I mean, I understand that there are, of course, safety implications, but realistically they wouldn’t come from the two of us quite overtly filming with a big rig whilst each hauling what was clearly camera bags.

The point is this: the “Photo Police” is a thing, and we see it all too often with tripods, so where do we draw the line? At what point does a sign expressing that no drones are to be used, for example, become enforceable? At what point does it need to be obeyed, and at what point does it need to be merely considered. Recently, in Halstatt, Austria, there were “no drone” signs all over the place, but upon checking the airspace in the area, it was clear that these signs were effectively meaningless and they had just been put up by the locals. Similarly, the manager in that duty-free store simply didn’t like the fact that we were filming—it wasn’t anything other than that. He didn’t have a firm understanding on what his position was, nor on what our rights were, not only as photographers but as “members of society” when he insisted we delete the footage, and subsequently got the police involved in his incorrect actions.

I guess it’s all something we need to accept as photographers, and to that end, it’s important that if other people don’t understand the rules then we need to make sure we do. We need to know the laws, rules, and regulations for where we live and wherever we’re visiting so that we can properly and effectively deal with these kinds of situations.

And, in that endeavour, I wish you luck!

Much love

Dave

I’m just back from teaching at the Adobe MAX Conference in Los Angeles. An incredible event, in scope, scale and how Adobe pulls it off. Really something special to experience (and thanks to all the folks who came out to my sessions).

During the opening keynote, my dear friend and 21-year evangelist for Adobe Systems, Terry White (seen above), was on stage to show off the new features in Photoshop CC 2019 (he totally crushed it btw — he’s such a gifted presenter). There’s a new workspace for Content-Aware Fill, which is arguably one of Photoshop’s most amazing features already, and this workspace is incredibly helpful. But there were two things — seemingly small — that got the biggest cheers of the entire keynote (not just the Photoshop section — the entire keynote which included some mind-blowing features in other Adobe products).

The biggest cheer was when Terry showed that now in Photoshop when you press Command-Z (Windows: Ctrl-Z) you get multiple undos. You can press it again and again and it keeps undoing and undoing. The crowd roared! Of course, you’ve been able to have multiple undos in Photoshop for years now — you just had to know the secret shortcut — Option-Command-Z on Mac (Windows: Alt-Ctrl-Z). Now, it’s just Command-Z. Ahhhh!

The other was when Terry showed that after 25+ years, you no longer have to hold the Shift key to keeps things proportional when using Free Transform to resize an object or type. You can just grab a corner and drag. Like this:

Last year, I wrote an entire blog post asking Adobe to drop the Shift key thing. It was called “Dear Adobe. It’s 2017. Can we drop the Stupid Shift Key Yet?” and I don’t know if that’s why they did it, but if it helped nudge them in any small way, I’m delighted.

It took a long time, but “dropping the Shift” is finally here. BTW: if you do want to stretch your object, rather than resizing it proportionally, then you (wait for it…wait for it…) you hold the Shift key.

Thank you, Adobe — tweaks, and improvements like this to features we use day in and day out, really make a difference, and these two will have a real impact on our productivity and they make working in Photoshop that much more fun. Also, thanks for the cool big things, too. :)

Have a great weekend, everybody!

Best,

-Scott

P.S. On Monday I’m in the Detroit area with my new “Photoshop for Wedding and Portrait Photographers” seminar, and then in Philadelphia on Tuesday. Hope you can come out and spend the day with me. 

 

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How To Get The Cinematic Look From Your Drone Photography with Dave Williams
Learn how to translate techniques from movies into your drone footage for a cinematic look with Dave Williams! Dave travels the world shooting with all types of cameras, and especially his drones. In this class Dave teaches you how to stand out from the crowd by using your drone with complete creative control to fly like a movie director and create something truly cinematic. You’ll learn how to overcome limitations, do your research ahead of time, configure your drone’s settings for optimal capture, and practice the types of movements used in movies to capture the viewer’s attention and tell your story.

In Case You Missed It
Learn how to get your Mavic Air off the ground and configured for the best photos and videos it can capture! Join Terry White and Scott Kelby as they teach you everything you need to know before you fly – the apps to use, the hardware, phone setup, safety tips, and all the advanced features. Each lesson builds on the previous one, starting in the studio and then heading outdoors to see the drone in action. Terry and Scott wrap up the class with tips on transferring the photos from the Mavic Air and how to power it down. This class is perfect for anyone interested in drones or other gadgets.

Rama Cay, Nicaragua. 2013.

When did you fall in love with photography? Can you remember the moment of perfect cohesion when your brain and heart infused the clunky object in your hand and the wild world was captured through a lens? It stirred something inside you and you realized, “There’s my voice. There’s my sight.”

Were you once too shy to step out before you allowed your camera to become a buffer, a connection when you felt so disconnected? Were you too unrestrained and scattered, yet the camera benevolently forced you to slow down, listen, and compose order from chaos?

Yeah, me too.

And then there was this one day in 2009 as I sat on the floor of an orphanage in New Delhi, India. I handed my Canon 30D to an 8-year-old named Simon and taught him the essential functions of the camera. I watched him move about the room, interacting with his friends, and focusing with such intent concentration for an 8-year-old. I saw this familiar spark begin to grow in him and expand with each shutter click and smile as he viewed his images on the dusty camera screen.

Simon. New Delhi, India. 2009.

“My God, he gets it too,” I thought, amazed.

And though I was in India to use my photography as a “voice for the voiceless,” Simon helped me discover that he already had a voice, he just had no way to express it.

Over the next few years, my job title shifted from photographer to educator to non-profit-person in rapid succession.

Jinja, Uganda. 2017.

I founded Picture Change in 2011 in response to the realization that the people in front of my camera were able to tell their own story, they just lacked the education and resources to do so.

“Mi Madre” by Magdiel Castro. Chichigalpa, Nicaragua. 2015.
Magdiel and his mother. Chichigalpa, Nicaragua. 2015.

Picture Change invests 6 – 10 weeks in students living in areas struggling under poverty or social injustice. We begin with photography basics and then move into documentary storytelling technique and basic business skills. They choose someone in their community to feature in a photo story, implementing listening and interview abilities they’ve learned while documenting the lives of their subject.

Barbara on assignment. Jinja, Uganda. 2017.

The students facilitate a “giving back day” in which they use their new photography skills to benefit others, such as photographing and distributing family portraits or  “glamour pics” for widows in the village. For many recipients, it was the first printed photo they had of themselves.

Kalpana photographing residents at the Ashia Home for the Physically and Mentally HandiCapable. Ooty, India. 2012.

To conclude each project, we host a community-wide gallery show championing the students’ hard work and celebrating the lives they have documented in a fun, public event. We make every effort to bring in local professional photographers during the project and connect our students to further opportunities in the months following. The donated gear is entrusted to our partner organization so the can students continue their photography and have an opportunity to earn their own camera. Thus far, Picture Change has worked in India, Montenegro, Uganda, four unique projects in Nicaragua, and with refugees resettled in Nashville, Tennessee. 

Kate and Gloria during the very first Picture Change gallery show in Padre Ramos, Nicaragua. 2011.
Chang and his family during our “Redefining Refugee” gallery. Nashville, Tennessee. 2014.

Most of our students have experience being in front of the camera and though, undoubtedly, most of the photographers/missionaries/NGO’s were well-intentioned, the results left a negative impression.

I asked our students in Uganda, “Based on what you see on social media and the news, what is a stereotype about Africans?”

“That we are all poor! We are all dirty beggars! That we all have HIV!” they responded.

“Is this true?”

“No!!!”

“Then show me with your photography what is the truth. Show me Africa by Africans.”

Jackline documenting a women’s farming initiative in Jinja, Uganda. 2017.
“Africa by Africans” by Yusuf Musambu. Jinja, Uganda. 2017.
Yusuf and Gideon. Jinja, Uganda. 2017.

One of our students has taken her photography education further than anyone ever imagined. Rosa Lisseth Umanzor Diaz lived in a small fishing village in Nicaragua and had learned English by attending school in El Salvador. She was my translator and first photography student in the village of Padre Ramos, Nicaragua, our flagship project in 2011. With the skills she acquired and equipment donated by Picture Change supporters, Rosa adopted the vision of Picture Change as her own. She built a business as a freelance photographer, taught classes in her community, and has been hired by international companies and photojournalists. We also recently hired her as Picture Change’s social media manager.

Kate and Rosa. Ometepe, Nicaragua. 2016.

In 2017, Rosa flew (for her first time) to Uganda to work as an assistant teacher with Picture Change. She was a true cultural ambassador and an incredible inspiration to our African students. She, like them, grew up struggling to meet day-to-day needs and overcame enormous obstacles for an education or finding a decent job. Yet, because of photography, she has been able to support her family, meet needs in her community, and eventually found herself traveling halfway around the world to share her skills and story with others.   

Rosa teaching class. Jinja, Uganda. 2017.
Rosa (from Nicaragua) led a group of our Ugandan students in distributing and documenting solar lights donated by MPowerd Inc. 2017.

In fact, Rosa recently told me, “I have only cried of happiness twice in my life. The first time was when I had just finished a photography job in the northern part of my country and was on the bus coming home. There I was, a Nicaraguan woman traveling alone, earning my own money, and using my skills to help others.”

Photography is communication without words. It can be a tool for empowerment and activism, bringing hope that things can change and YOU have a role, a voice, in changing the world for the better. Not all of my students become professional photographers but all learn to see themselves and the world around them with more clarity and greater understanding. It is my privilege to work with (rather than for) those in poverty and share this gift which has changed my life – the power of storytelling through photography.

Albijon photographing his family in Konik Refugee Camp, Podgorica, Montenegro. 2016.
Solar Light distribution documentary team. Jinja, Uganda. 2017.
Ooty, India. 2012.

Thank you.

If you’d like to help Picture Change empower more students to have an impact through photography, you can find out more about donating equipment (such as camera gear, smartphones, or laptop computers) or financially right here.

You can also help Picture Change by using your voice via business connections, relationships, or social networks to raise awareness of Picture Change and champion the work of our students.

To learn more about Picture Change, see student photography, or find more ways to be involved, visit Picture-Change.org or email Kate at info@picture-change.org.

“You are important because you exist and your circumstances do not define you.”

Kate is available for speaking engagements via kategazaway.com. You can also see more of her work at Kate-Gazaway.squarespace.com, and keep up with her on Instagram. Be sure to follow Picture Change on Instagram as well!

 

I’m Dave Williams, and it’s time for another dose of knowledge to land here on Scott Kelby’s Photoshop Insider for #TravelTuesday. This week, that knowledge ties in with the first of my 10 tips that appear in the recent “19th Annual 100 Photoshop Hot Tips” issue of Photoshop User magazine!

Coming in at tip number 91 of 100 is “Blue Sells So Emphasise It!” There’s a lot to back up with this wild claim, so let me tell you all about it:

Take a look around at the clear attraction to the colour blue and its association with loyalty, faith, and trust. It also represents strength and dependability. It’s the colour of the sky on a nice day, and even for that reason alone, it’s a colour we love. There are so many global brands who use this colour for these very reasons, such as Facebook, Twitter, IBM, Flickr, NASA, AmEx, and even WordPress, which I’m using right now.

 

 

Research has been done by gender on favourite colours, and in a study it was noted that blue was the majority’s favourite colour, taking the lead at 57% of the vote amongst men and 35% amongst women.

It is, therefore, important to give serious consideration to the use of the colour blue in your photography because, as I claimed in that Photoshop User Hot Tip, blue sells! It’s obvious when you think about it—if the majority favour blue, then, of course, people will tend to spend more time looking at something blue and associating it to good things in their minds. But, how else can we work with the colour blue to make our work stand out?

 

 

Sitting equidistantly from blue on the colour wheel are yellow and red, which we can incorporate into our images for good contrast. Let’s take a very quick look at how that relates to real life with a sunset! We all love a sunset, and our sunset tends to match the blue sky with the red or yellow warmth of the setting sun. It’s familiar and it’s a perfect example of the use of these colours together. Taking it back to less contrast and having more complementary colours, going in either direction from blue on the colour wheel, we go towards purple and green. Using these colours together will tend to keep things much calmer and even incorporating some blue, gray, or white will complement the use of blue in our images.

And just as a final pointer, when describing colours it helps to give it a name. This is a secret pro tip for you: when describing the colour “brown,” if you use another word, such as “mocha,” you’ll get a far better response. So, when describing the colour “blue,” if you find a matching word such as “azure,” “sky,” “royal,” etc., you’ll notice a difference, and you can thank me later. ;)

Check out the rest of my Hot Tips, and the 90 others, in the latest edition of Photoshop User magazine right now on KelbyOne.com!

Much Love

Dave

 

Hi, gang and greetings from Los Angeles where this morning Adobe will take the stage for their huge annual conference, Adobe MAX 2018 — held this year at the Los Angeles Convention Center. I’m very excited to be teaching at the conference this year — I’m teaching a class today and tomorrow called “How to Present Like a Pro” and I can’t wait to share a bunch of really helpful techniques with the folks here at the conference.

I’m not sharing anything out-of-turn or secret here, but I will tell you that historically Adobe releases big updates to products like Photoshop and Lightroom during their opening Adobe MAX keynote, (along with other products in the Adobe Creative Cloud, and sometimes they even launch new products), so it could potentially be a really exciting morning!

If anything substantial happens for Lightroom during Adobe’s keynote address, we would cover that over at our sister site, LightroomKillerTips.com – but again, that’s not a guarantee of future events, so…maybe there’s nothing new at all. But if Adobe does announce anything cool, don’t worry — we’d be “on it.”

Heads up KelbyOne Pro Members:
If anything big is announced today, we would generally release an issue of Photoshop User magazine covering anything new announced in the Keynote having to do with Photoshop that very same day (which would be, today). So, if they do wind up announce something cool, look for an issue of the mag to appear right away. Hey, ya never know.

I know it’s a whole lot of conjecture, based on things that have happened at past Adobe MAX keynotes, but if they do have some interesting announcements, at least you know we’ll be on it for you right away!

Hope I see you here at the conference, and hopefully in one of my classes.

Here’s to what could be a very exciting week!

Best,

-Scott
West Coast. West Coast! [Say that in a Snoop Dogg voice].

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