Just a quick tip today, but I think it’s an important one. Last week I was talking to a photographer and he told me had a hot-shoe flash and when I asked him how he liked it, his exact response was, “I hate it.” He hates it because he thought he would be beautiful portraits of his kids with it, but when he actually wound up with is just a brighter, harsher version of what he was getting with the pop-up flash on his camera.
First, he has to use some kind of wireless transmitter to get his flash unit off the top of his camera, and over to the side (that’s a given), but that still won’t do the trick. The sad thing is — he spend nearly $600 for his flash, but he only needed to spend $20 more to actually fall in love with it.
The secret is diffusion (putting something in front of your flash to soften the light). See below.
Above: The shot on the left has the flash off the camera in the proper position, but it’s just straight flash. Compare the one on the right; look at the difference in the quality of the light, and the softness of the shadows. This image is tremendously more flattering for your subject. All that took was holding a $20 diffuser (well, $19.90 from B&H Photo — a Westcott 1-stop diffuser) in front of the flash. That’s it. No fancy tricks. No amazing flash technique. Just a stinkin’ $20 handheld diffuser from Westcott (not a reflector — a diffuser).
I start from scratch in that class, so if you ever wanted to really, finally fall in love with your flash, you gotta check it out. It’s a short class (we shoot indoors and on location), but it will change how you feel about your flash forever (and best of all — it doesn’t matter which make or model of flash you have). I put the trailer for the class below.
Hope you found that helpful.
Have a rockin’ Tuesday everybody!
P.S.If you’re going to the Photoshop World Conference in Orlando next month; stay where the instructors and KelbyOne crew are staying — our official conference host hotel, the Hyatt Recency. It’s connected to the Convention Center so you’re right there in the middle of everything and we have a special deal for PSW attendees. Details found here.
Hey, that rhymes. Must be a sign…a sign that if you’re a photographer in Philly, you should come out and spend the day with me next Monday for my “Lightroom On Tour” live seminar. Here’s the scoop:
Who: you (and me). What: My full-day Lightroom seminar Where: The Philadelphia Convention Center When: Monday, March 13th starting at 10:00 am. Why: Because you want to get really good at Lightroom, really fast!
It’s just $99 for the full day, including my detailed workbook, and 10 of my own custom Lightroom presets.Here’s the link for more details, and tickets.
Boston Photographers: I’m there this Friday (in just four days!). If you haven’t already signed up, don’t be only photographer in Boston not there that day — come on out and let’s learn some Lightroom.
Hope you’ll share this with any photographers you know in either Philly or Boston. :)
Hi Gang – you might have heard me talk about an online course I did on “Designing Beautiful Wedding Albums in Lightroom CC“ and I said it was more about the design and layout ideas for the wedding album, than on teaching you how to make photo books in Lightroom (especially since I already have a course on that topic).
So, I asked our video crew to pull out an actual excerpt from the online course so you can see what I’m talking about, and once you watch it, it will be immediately clear. In this excerpt I did two layouts (in the full online class I do a whole bunch! In fact, that’s most of the class — showing you how to create, and then save, these layouts as your own custom templates so they’re just one-click away in the future).
Anyway, the clip (below) is 5-1/2 minutes long, but you’ll learn some really solid techniques — enough that I hope it will make you want to watch the full class this weekend.
Here’s a link to the full class if you’re a KelbyOne member and you want to check it out (and if you’re not, you can join now for just $19.95 for a month and watch it (and nearly 50 other full length Lightroom classes) to death (to death I tell ya!).
But first, if you’re in Boston or Philly… I’m inviting you to come out and spend the day with me as I kick off my new Lightroom On Tour full-day seminar. It’s just $99 (including a detailed workbook), and it’s 100% guaranteed — if it’s not the best Lightroom seminar you’ve ever attended, at any price, we’ll refund your ticket right on the spot! I’m in Boston on Friday, March 10th, and Philly on Monday the 13th. Come on out – we’ll have a blast! Details and tickets are here.
P.S.My next seminar stops after that are Chicago on April 10th and then the Detroit area on April 11th . If you’re up that way, I hope you’ll come and spend the day with me.
Hi Gang — we’re only 50-something days away from the Photoshop World Conference (April 20-22, 2017) in Orlando, Florida at the Orange County Convention Center (whoo hoo!), and I thought I’d give a quick update on what’s up, via a Q&A style post. Here we go:
Q. I know you’re in Orlando now, but you’ll be in the Vegas in the fall, right? A. No. We are not doing a Vegas Photoshop World this year because Adobe will be holding their Adobe Max Conference in Vegas at the same time we’d be there.
Q. I usually go to the Vegas one — but since there’s not one, should I come to the Orlando Conference instead? A. Absolutely! It’s going to rock — Orlando is a perfect location for the conference (in fact, Photoshop World started in Orlando, back in 1999). The convention center is about 15 minutes from Walt Disney World, and amazing restaurants, clubs, shopping, and fun stuff are all within walking distance of the convention center and our host hotel. You will love it!!
Q. Will dog photographer Kaylee Greer be there? A. You bet! She’s all over it — doing a pre-conference workshop and class sessions.
Q. What about Matt Kloskowski? How about Jay Maisel? Serge Ramelli? Dave Black? Moose! Glyn Dewis? Julieanne Kost? Kelly Anne Conway? Terry White? Kristina Sherk? What about them? A. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, no, yes, yes.
Q. Alright, I’ll go register right now. Joel Grimes and Lindsay Adler will be there too, right? A. You bet.
Q. What if I get arrested during the conference? Will you bail me out? A. Are you planning on getting arrested?
Q. I never plan on getting arrested. Sometimes it just happens. A. Don’t worry. Each year we put an amount aside in escrow strictly for attendee bail purposes.
Q. Really? A. No.
Q. Last year you guys had the wonderful Gregory Heisler for your special evening presentation. Who will it be this year? A. What an incredible night it’s going to be. It’s “An evening with Stacy Pearsall.” She’s an award-winning, medal-winning US military combat photographer and her images and stories are just stunning. Stacy absolutely mesmerized the crowd with her sessions at Photoshop World last year, and we knew giving her this after hours event would be a truly special night for everybody.
Q. Are you doing the Film Festival in Orlando? A. Absolutely! That was another big hit from last year’s Photoshop World, and we’re making it bigger and better this year. The deadline for entries (for registered attendees only) is March 17, 2017 at midnight ET. More details (and the entry form) here.
Q. When is the deadline to enter the Guru Awards contest? A. Same date as the Film Festival — March 17th, 2017. Here’s the details on that.
Q. What if I’m not going? Can I still enter? A. Ummm…..no.
Q. So these contests are only open to be people who attend? A. That’s right.
Q. That doesn’t seem fair. A. I dunno. It does to me. These are competitions created exclusively for people who attend the conference — so they’re competing only against other people at the conference, so we’re all there together for these competitions.
Q. Except me. A. Right. All the cool people will be there. Except you.
Q. So, you’re kind of implying that I’m cool by saying all the cool people would be there “but” me, so you were including me in the “cool pool.” A. I was, but I gotta tell ya, this whole line of questioning is putting you in danger of getting a one-way ticket out of coolsville, daddy-o.
Q. OK, I get it. A. That’s more of a statement, but I’ll let it slide.
Q. What is the host hotel this year? A. We have an awesome hotel this year — it’s the beautiful Hyatt Grand (it’s used to be the Peabody hotel, but they renovated, expanded, and it’s even more awesome). Plus, it’s connected to the convention center so you’re right there where the action is.
Q. Is that where you and all the instructors are staying? A. Yup. Well, except for Joe McNally. He insists on staying at the Four Seasons.
Q. Really? A. Of course not. Joe’s at the Hyatt, too. Room 1863. Tip: he leaves his door open when he’s taking a shower. True story.
Q. Do I have to pick my classes in advance? A. Nope. You can go to any class you want, any time you want, and move between classes as you like. No pre-registration necessary unless you’re coming a day early for the pre-conference workshops.
Q. Are the workshops the day before still available? A. There are ten workshops, but a few of them are literally going to sell out this week, so if you’re thinking of coming a day early to get into one of these in-depth workshops, I’d get your ticket for the one you want now, so it’s not sold out.
Q. Will the Partner Pavilion vendor area be open to the public? A. It will not be, but if you wanted to bring a spouse or someone traveling with you, and we can arrange a special free pass for them.
Q. If I’m a beginner will I be lost? A. Only if you don’t follow the directional signs. You could easily wind up at Seaworld if you go too far past the end of the convention center.
Q. I meant in the sessions? A. We have a lot of beginner’s that come to Photoshop World, and they’re able to follow along no problem with most of the sessions. Of course, if a session is named “Advanced” then I’d probably sit that one out, but there’s nearly 100 sessions so there will be plenty of other classes to choose from. Also, while you might arrive as a beginner, you won’t leave as one.
Q. I’m looking for a roommate for the conference. Any ideas? A. Well, you could try match.com or get the Tinder app like our instructor Erik Valind.
Q. He uses the Tinder app? A. I have no idea, but let’s just say that since we briefly showed his naked butt in our “Wayne’s World II” movie spoof during the opening keynote a couple of years ago, he hasn’t had to look very hard for roommates.
Q. What kind of conference is this really? A. Well, apparently it’s ‘clothing optional’ if that tells you anything.
Q. What’s the deal with you guys and March 17th? It’s like everything expires on March 17th. A. That’s when our cream cheese in our fridge at the office expires, so we felt like that was a sign.
Q. Do I get a discount if I’m a KelbyOne member? A. You bet! You save $100 off the full price.
Q. So, if I’m a KelbyOne member and I register before March 17th, I really get $200 off, right? A. Right!
Q. What if I’m a Photoshop World Alumni, and a K1 member, and I register early? Do I get $250 off? A. No, unfortunately, offers and discounts can not be combined.
Q. Who would make a coupon that’s a foot long? A. I know. That one always puzzled me.
Q. What if I have a question that’s not answered here? A. I have answered every possible question and permutation with complete clarity, silent lucidity, and quadrophenia.
Q. OK, but let’s just pretend for a moment that somehow one slipped past the goalie. Where can I learn more? A. Well, in that one-in-a-million chance, you could start by reading our official FAQ (as opposed to this somewhat nonofficial Q&A), or you can chat with our team directly from the site unless you do it late at night when they’re all busy on match.com
Q. Well Scott, this has been enlightening, engaging, and endemical. A. I’ll take that as a compendious. I hope I’ll see you, and your fancy words, in Orlando!
Q. I’ve always wanted to go — I wouldn’t miss it! A. I knew you were one of the cool people!
Q. As cool as Erik Valind? A. No.
Well, I hope you found at least 16% of that helpful.
Have a great Tuesday everybody. Wait, one more thing — come catch me and my guest, the ambidextrous, multi-breasted, Matt Kloskowski as he “Rocks the Houseski” on “The Grid” tomorrow at 4pm – don’t miss it – http://kelbytv.com/thegrid
P.S.Q.Scott, is there any way you might embed a short video below that might just push me over the edge about going?A. I’m reluctant to do that, but OK — it’s below, but only because you asked. ;-)
Hi Gang – and happy Friday. Let’s kick into the weekend with a Peter Hurley love fest:
It’s “The Top Ten Tips for Connecting With Your Subject” with Peter himself as the guest on this past Wednesday’s episode of “The Grid.” We said it was 10, but Peter was like a fountain of ideas and it was just so great. Wonderful ideas, and great insights on connecting with your subject to make better portraits. Really good stuff — so worth watching. (Plus, check out Peter’s latest look).
We just recently released a brand new full-length online training class from Peter — it’s “Peter’s Top 10 Headshot Questions Answered.” People are raving about how great this class is. Check out the official trailer (below):
Watch the full length online class at bit.ly/2kz26ts – if you’re not a KelbyOne member, take the 10-day free trial and you can watch this entire awesome class right now.
This is the one that started it all. It’s the classic, and it debuted right here on the blog, in a Guest Blog post from Peter, and now its been viewed more than 3-million times. Let’s make it 3-million and one. ;-)
There ya have it folks — a Peter Hurley Triple Play! Hope you watch Peter’s Class this weekend, and his Grid episode — just incredibly fun, helpful, insight stuff and nobody brings it like Peter.
Have a great weekend everybody and I hope to see your smiling face back here on Monday. :)
P.S.Heads up — If you’re thinking of entering your work in the Photoshop World Guru Awards Competition (a photography and Photoshop contest just open to folks attending the Photoshop World Conference 2017 in Orlando this April), the deadline for submissions is March 17, 2017. For more details on “The Guru Awards” click here.