Posts By Brad Moore

Artistic Landscape Panoramas with Steve Hansen
Journey to Point Reyes National Seashore with Steve Hansen to master the artistic landscape panorama. From sunrise to sunset, Steve demonstrates the techniques he uses to create stunning high resolution panoramic photos. In this class you’ll learn what gear is required, how to seek out good panoramic subject matter, techniques for shooting two-image vertical panoramas, how to capture HDR panoramas, how to shoot for focus stacking, how to overcome stitching errors, how to post process various types of panoramic photos, and so much more! By the end of the class you’ll have all the expertise needed to head out into all kinds of light to start practicing the technical aspects of landscape panoramic photography.

In Case You Missed It
Explore along with professional photographer Moose Peterson during his first visit to Monument Valley. Moose walks through his camera gear and shooting strategies to set up for a successful shot. He walks through post-production for editing images and the entire workflow of setting up a time-lapse video. Follow Moose as he photographs one of the most impressive landscapes in America. This class is perfect for anyone interested in editing landscape photography and learning time-lapse.

Love and awe.

Two of my favorite concepts in all of art and Life itself.

Oh, also pithy. I freakin’ love that word. It means: “a language or style that is concise and forcefully expressive.” Yeah, pithy is cool. And fun to say!

Scott Kelby… thank you for providing a place for all three of my favorite things to thrive in uncountable ways. And I don’t just mean for me – I mean for everyone who loves photography and learning. You are indeed a force of nature for Good.

BTW… I still get such positive comments about this episode of “The Chat” (a show I self-produced a few years ago, just for fun), from all the way back in 2014, I wanted to re-share it here. It was a revelation…

Which brings us in perfect full-circle manner back to Love and Awe; two of the most powerful creative forces in the universe.

Photography is Love Made Visible.
That’s a statement, isn’t it? I could also say that “Art” is love made visible. Or creativity, period – if it results in something that is actually visible.

In my opinion, if you want to take a beautiful, defining image that speaks from your soul, you have to fall in love with it. Madly, truly, deeply in love.

A picture is a poem without words.
-Horace

People sometimes think I’m a little “woo-woo” about all this. They (mistakenly) think I don’t focus on the technical aspects of photography.

Mais non!

At a certain point in my life, I got busy and focused so MUCH on the technical aspects of my photography that it simply doesn’t lead the show anymore. Sufficiently internalized, technique becomes like muscle memory in photography, just as it does in sports. It’s just there, like a car with a full tank of gas, engine humming, waiting to see where to next. Which, in turn, frees you to focus upon the feeling, vision or the message of your art. I call it: Technique in Service of Vision.

Of course,  if a new technique were to present itself that I really wanted to master, then I’d get busy! I’d practice it, repeat it, over and over, till it was embedded into my nervous system, so that I could speak fluently in its language without thinking about it. Only then could I spontaneously create with it.

Mastering technique so you can go do cool stuff with it was basic to every sport and artistic discipline I’ve done to a high level, whether it was acting, singing, figure skating, equestrian sports, downhill skiing, voiceovers. I’m a great believer in “technique will set you free” in most disciplines. But only if it’s set into its proper place; which is “in service of” performing said discipline in a signature fashion – and not as an end unto itself.

Here’s how I see it…  (more…)

Pro Quality Headshots Using A Simple Setup with Kristi Sherk
Learn how to create pro-level headshots with with Kristi Sherk! You may know Kristi as an amazing retoucher, but corporate headshots are a large part of her business. In the first part of this class Kristi takes you through her lighting setup, teaches you how to prepare for the shoot with the goal of saving you time in post production, how to coach your subjects, and how she reviews the shoot with the client to make the final selects. The second part of class is all about how to deal with some of the more problematic retouching situations you might encounter, such as reflections on glasses or reducing wrinkles on clothing. Kristi is all about saving you time in post production, so she wraps up the class with a look at actions and plug-ins you can leverage in your workflow.

In Case You Missed It
Join Kristina Sherk from Shark Pixel for an entire class dedicated to teaching you the best methods for retouching eyes using Photoshop. The eyes are the windows to the soul, and the first things viewers connect with when looking at your photographs. Correctly retouching eyes, without going overboard, is one of the most crucial aspects of portrait retouching, and can make or break a photo. In this class you’ll learn all aspects of eye retouching, including under the eyes, opening the eyes, whitening, adding lashes, exaggerating color, improving catchlights, and more. By the end of the class you’ll have a new bundle of tools, tips, and techniques for improving your retouching skills, as well as a free set of brushes you can download and use.

It’s six am and I’ve been sitting in front of my computer for an hour trying to figure out how to put onto paper what I want to express with this soap box I’ve been given, by being asked to write this guest blog.

Internally I know what I want to tell you. I know why I’ve been given this opportunity to guest blog for Scott freakin’ Kelby, I created the opportunity by believing that it would happen.

Through this journey of mine, I have been approached by many people thanking me for allowing them the opportunity to feel like they could be themselves and create art that speaks to their soul. 2018 Kelly can’t believe that anyone would feel like they are unable to express themselves and be their authentic self. 2018 Kelly needs to take a step back and remember the path she took to get to this point.

I was where you are right now….

I know sometimes you’re scared and you feel like you are not enough. I’ve been there. There are so many amazing photographers and SO MUCH beautiful work.

The question of how will you find your niche and create amazing art probably runs through your mind like a railcar… I know there are so many moments when you feel fear. 

Fear of failure

Fear that your goals won’t be achieved

Fear of stepping outside of the box

I know this, because I have dealt with those emotions for as long as I can remember.

Before I started focusing on how my internal dialog affected my every day life, I was a mess.

Seriously.

My childhood was not an easy one, and I used those experiences to make excuses for my drama, my emotions and– at times– my negative attitude.

I told myself it was okay to lack confidence and doubt myself because I had heard it so often as a child.

I allowed myself to be taken advantage of and allowed my creative and internal voice to be muffled to accommodate other people’s agendas because I was afraid if I created something weird or out of the ordinary, people wouldn’t like me.

There was a time, not long ago, when I would be riddled with jealousy every time someone succeeded in a way I wanted to succeed.

You’ve felt it, too, haven’t you?

It was easy to find reasons to diminish their accomplishments and make myself feel better for not existing in a space where I felt successful and happy. 

I recoiled at questions regarding my photography and art in fear of them stealing a piece of my pie, and the possibility of someone else moving ahead and creating the reality I wanted.

But that way of thinking was not projecting my passions forward…it was holding me back.

I knew I wasn’t happy, and that artistically I wasn’t even close to where I wanted to be. I needed a change, so I began engaging with others in a positive way. Even if they had negative feedback, I would try to answer and explain in the most loving way I could. Meditation and focusing on my spirituality became a driving force in my creativity, and to this day I feel out of sorts if I miss a day of self contemplation and personal focus. I realized how little effort I put into self preservation and happiness.

Every morning I set my intention for the day, and even though I may get derailed from time to time, try to live in the most positive way I can.

You don’t have to be scared. I know this because I have seen the proof in my own life and career over and over in the last three years and it has changed every aspect of who I am.

Through this journey, I consistently resonate with the belief that we create our own reality and that we have the ability to create the life we choose.

This has been a driving force throughout my entire life.

It wasn’t until I took the time to focus and realize it, that it truly changed my life.

Not long ago, the certainty of this showed itself to me.

March 2017 I created a mock-up of my art on a wall. The images were huge, and in a gallery-like atmosphere.

I felt an overwhelming sense of pride when I looked at that image.

I hung it at my desk and told everyone that within the year, it would become a reality. I was well-aware that it would be no small task, as it was crazy and completely out of the realm of what my reality would allow in that moment.

Fast forward to April 2018 I walked into the studio of RGG EDU to film my retouching tutorial, having had no input into the set that was created, the aesthetic, or the set up. That was one of the most jaw dropping, awe inspiring, amazing moments of my life.

Everything I had intended to happen was literally right in front of me.

Now, I’m not saying that you just need to print out an image, stick it on your wall and it will become a truth. It simply comes down to what your subconscious truly believes.

Have faith in yourself and your abilities. If you don’t believe in yourself, who will? I still struggle with self doubt, self esteem issues and at times, negative talk. The difference is that I’m aware of how those feelings impact my subconscious, and that those feelings will attract more negativity into my life.

There is enough to go around.  I had to put aside my fear of sharing my knowledge and my fear that others would succeed in place of me, and realize that there is enough for everyone. That is definitely not an easy feeling to overcome, but once you realize the impact of sharing what you’ve learned and how you’ve accomplished it can have on others, it makes it a bit easier. 

Lending a hand and sharing our knowledge only helps to bring about amazing things, incredible people and abundance into our lives. What you do for others, you do for yourself.

Set goals. Focus and decide what you want to achieve. Understand why you want to achieve your goal and start looking for ways to get it done. Don’t wait for life to happen.

Be nice people. I don’t think this needs much explanation. Life is too short, and there is too much beauty to allow negativity into our lives. React with kindness, compassion and love always.

I want to tell you that its ok to be weird, strange and kooky, I’ll still like you! 

It’s okay if your art doesn’t fit into a box.

Rules are boring. 

Your thoughts become things—you are a product of those thoughts and it will show itself in your work. So be positive, work hard and believe that you can have the life you want.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes:

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader” – John Quincy Adams

Inspire others….become the leader!

You can see more of Kelly’s work at KellyRobitaille.com, and keep up with her on Etsy, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

LIFE IS A COMPOSITE

Hello everyone! For this guest blog post (thank you Scott and Brad for the wonderful invite to contribute!), folks are probably hoping to eek out some super slick tips and tricks about compositing, both for shooting and editing alike (and I’ll definitely deliver on those—I promise!).

But I also wanted to get a bit more philosophical about the nature of compositing and its greater possibilities and implications in my own life’s grand composite—and perhaps yours as well.

For those that could care less about the musings and meandering background of a super Photoshop wizard/nerd and just want the goods, feel free to jump down to the header “Five Tips for Shooting and Editing Composite Images” (you’re welcome :-)!

For everyone else feeling either a bit more curious, pensive, or similarly introspective, please read on!

Put Daddy Down, Please

Like creating any new image, I like to start at the beginning with sketches of the process and figure out some kind of endgame. So here we go with a medley of biography, discovery, and realization—but first, an overview!

Filtering and searching way way back, some of my earliest memories are of making art with computers—and after teaching Photoshop for over a decade at the university and college level (yes, big time-leap there!), and writing two books on compositing in Photoshop, I realize the lens through which I perceive the world and life in general has been forever altered. It’s helped me shape my own creative direction. As my (nearly) six year old son now describes his dreams to me in terms of Photoshop tools and features (and accurately I might add!), I see that my focus has even spilled (just a bit) onto my family as well (sorry, family!).

I also realize that I’ve always been a compositor in life—or at least a collector, editor, and creator in some form for nearly my entire 33 years of being. I also believe that we all are compositors to some extent, whether or not we realize it; after all, life is essentially one mega composite we piece together one experience, moment, scar, and laugh at a time… I know, deeeep, right?

But seriously, there is a lot to be said about having a creative career concept, a goal, and using the pieces you have at hand (some garbage and some pure gold)—and seeking out or creating the ones for the concept we’re after. Yes, this is one big “compositing is a box-of-chocolates” life metaphor/story (please excuse the metaphor merge here). So for those interested in going a bit deeper into these layers, here’s a bit of my own composited story… And no, it does not start with a floating feather picked up by Tom Hanks—but that was a pretty damn good composited intro for its time!

A Little Personal History Panel
Scrolling way back again into my own childhood, I was doomed to be an artist from the onset. Starting with lining beans up into a perfectly (obsessively) straight line on some craft paper, my mother had me pegged at only a year or so of age. I believe her gardening journal for that day read something prophetic such as, “he’s definitely doomed to be an artist.” Okay, she probably did not use the word “doomed” but the realization was definitely meta tagged in there.

And while my mom was hobbit level earthy, my dad was equally Tron level nerdy as he ran his own “cutting-edge” computer business in the 80s. Dual custody between the two was like going back and forth from PC to Mac every week—blast you Ctrl vs Cmd!

However, when living with my dad on his week with me, I had access to gadgets such as those early scanners (the kind you had to hand roll over your images with) and the very first digital art applications. I discovered that when bored enough, there was definitely quite a bit you could do with nothing more than a pencil tool and paint bucket.

I was constantly inspired with the fantasy garden dreamland of my mom’s place and was jacked into the Grid at my dad’s. This all happened with a backdrop of living near Yosemite as my non-virtual backyard. This combination made for some interesting early digital art to say the least! Hidden metaphor tip in this—pick out an interesting background if you can.

Fantasy Landscape featuring some good old archived Yosemite imagery. Mac OS is not the only one that gets inspiration from this place!

Learn From Failure And Success
Unfortunately though, my first memory of inspirational and creative failure hit deep (definitely a destructive edit). Apparently the local county fair art competition judges did not understand digital art of any kind (there was definitely no category for it in the early 90s). I suppose I can dismiss my “honorable mention” non-award award, in that I was perhaps a bit too ahead of my time as the crayon drawn house with a crappy looking rainbow took first place that year. Solid play on that kid’s part though—and it’s a good thing I’m still not bitter about it… because that would be one strange snapshot of childhood to travel around with waiting to use as a background to motivation.

Speaking of which, these are all literal (mental) pictures in my life I that have inserted into a number of life compositions and choices. Some imagery we just have with us, and it shapes what we can do with it, who we are, and where we’re going with the pieces. My mental archive to this day is my most cherished inspirational material. Sometimes for texture, narrative, concept, or adding some atmosphere—or revenge! Check out my composite from ten or so years ago (notice the house with a rainbow? Take that, first place-winner kid from childhood!).

Rainbow’s End, a fantasy composite of over 200 layers created from my own photography archive back in 2008.

(more…)

Advanced Landscape Post Processing Techniques with Ramtin Kazemi
Learn advanced techniques for processing your landscape photos with Ramtin Kazemi! In this class you’ll discover Ramtin’s workflow, from start to finish, for taking a raw photo from scratch through to being ready to print or share online. Ramtin takes you step-by-step through his techniques for creating vertical panoramas, color adjustments, luminosity masks, selective contrast adjustments, adding atmosphere, and so much more!

In Case You Missed It
Building on his previous landscape photography class, Scott Kelby uses the photos he captured at Cannon Beach to teach you 10 essential post processing techniques every landscape photographer should know. Starting from a simple example to get oriented to the tools, Scott takes you step-by-step through his Lightroom and Photoshop workflow to learn increasingly more advanced techniques. In this class you’ll learn how to evaluate each photo before processing, different ways to boost contrast, how to stitch multiple frames into a panorama, how to process realistic looking HDR images, how to sharpen to bring out detail, how to enhance washed out skies, and so much more! Be sure to watch the landscape photography class first so that you can see the process through from capture to finish!

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