Mastering The Natural Light Portrait: Post Processing with Scott Kelby
Join Scott Kelby for the conclusion to his Mastering the Natural Light Portrait class, as he works through his process for editing the photos from that shoot. In this class you’ll learn the core types of edits you will apply to all of your natural light portraits. In this class you’ll learn different techniques for reducing distractions and making the face the most eye-catching part of the photo. From soft northern exposure light to dappled light, Scott teaches you how to analyze the photo, plan your approach, and get the most out of what Lightroom and Photoshop have to offer.

This class is perfect for anyone looking for tips on post processing or editing natural light photos.

In Case You Missed It
Learn the essential elements of retouching! Join Viktor Fejes as he provides you with a solid a foundation for how to approach retouching. This is not a class on how to use the basic tools of retouching, but rather how to think about retouching in a logical and methodical fashion, so that you can develop a workflow to properly retouch a photo from start to finish. You’ll learn how to evaluate an image, how to start in Camera Raw, how to structure your layers in Photoshop, how to use techniques involving false colors to fine tune texture, tones, and color, and all the while gaining a firm understanding for why you would approach retouching in this way.

Over the past few years, my career path has transformed from studying business in college, to one as a freelance photographer and designer for major brands and top musicians. 

But, that’s not what I want to talk about today. 

Today, I want to talk about taking pictures of “boring things.”

As I was starting to dabble with photography in college, I did a year-long one-a-day photo challenge to try to capture my everyday life with a unique perspective.

Some days I very quickly found the shot. I’d be going cliff jumping with my friends, or would be at a concert with cool lighting. Those days were easy.

Other days, however, were the days I really learned how to see. How do I take a cool photo of me writing an essay, eating breakfast, or what is aesthetically interesting about the walk back home that I had seen so many times?

I accidentally dropped my breakfast in that last one actually. Instead of letting the moment go by as an inconvenience, my one-a-day challenge mindset allowed me to see it as an opportunity for a photo.

The year long photo challenge of photographing “boring” ended up playing a huge role in changing the way I see the world, and in turn the way I grew as a photographer.

I want to encourage you to grow in the same way, and I want to start with a few questions:

Have you ever stopped and looked at the aesthetics of a pencil? The color of the side and eraser, the hexagonal geometry, the way the edges transform when it is being sharpened?

Because of my one-a-day challenge, I finally did.

Or have you ever paused while cleaning the dinner table and noticed the patterns of plates, the tones of the leftovers, and the way it quietly tells a story of the conversations just had moments before?

This was post-thanksgiving a year ago.

There is so much potential beauty to be found in the little moments around us. We just have to take the time to step back and see how not “normal” everything is. We get so accustomed to seeing stoplights or puddles, but if you actually think about what you are looking at, those things are ridiculous! A candle for example:

Crazy right??

I want to challenge you guys to find something today that you overlook and try to capture it in a new light.
You don’t have to capture the whole thing either. In fact, I find that simplicity in aesthetic helps highlight what is often overlooked.

Look for things like pattern, texture, color, composition, juxtaposition, and especially light. Also, consider including a human element to your photos by directing a friend or capturing a stranger. It’s the little things you wouldn’t normally notice that can set your photos apart.

No matter if you are in fashion, sports, landscapes, or somewhere in between, intentionally stopping to notice the beauty around you will begin transforming the way you see the world, and especially the way you photograph.

You can see more of Connor’s work at ConnorDwyer.com, follow him on Instagram, follow Thad the Finger on Instagram, and check out his coloring book!

It’s “Faster Lightroom Classic Tuesday,” everybody!

Adobe just released another update to Lightroom Classic CC (the regular desktop Lightroom we all know and love), but today we will love it more because it’s much faster than ever before.

Lots of speed improvements throughout (building upon the speed enhancements from the October update), and you’ve probably already read test results leaked around the Web last week that show the new Lightroom Classic 7.2 is significantly faster in many areas (provided you have at least 12 GB of RAM – though I always recommend, and use 16-GB). Plus, they’ve made the process of creating Collections and Collection Sets from Folders tremendously easier, along with some other important tweaks that you’ll dig (it’s all good stuff).

Lightroom expert (and Photoshop World Instructor) Rob Sylvan did a post today on all the new 7.2 update features over on my other blog: LightroomKillerTips.com and if you’ve got a sec, he’s posted all the full details and screen caps there. Here’s the link. 

Next week, it’s you, it’s me, it’s Lightroom in Texas
Next week I’m in San Antonio and Houston for my Full-day Lightroom seminar (and yes — I’ll be showing the new stuff live at the seminar). You can still come out and spend the day with me – here’s the link.

After that I’m heading to the WPPI conference in Las Vegas (I’ll be doing a book-signing there at the Rocky Nook booth. Details to come). Maybe I’ll run into you there. :)

Alright, let’s go download the new Lightroom Classic! :)

Best,

-Scott

Hello there! It’s Tuesday, so I’m back to gatecrash the blog again! This week, it’s all about Auto Tone!

So, I’ve been asked this question twice, which therefore automatically merits a blog post about it. Trust me, that’s how that works. ;)

‘What is Auto Tone?’

Well! First of all, what does it do? Photoshop’s Auto Tone (along with Auto Contrast and Auto Color; all found under the Image menu) can instantly fix colour and contrast problems in your images. The click of a button sends the Photoshop algorithms into action, the whole image is assessed, and from that assessment, Photoshop applies what it has determined is “right” for the image. What’s happening, in reality, is that all that work you did with the Exposure, Contrast, Shadows, Highlights, Whites, and Blacks sliders, along with the White Balance you decided upon, are all being looked at and adjusted again right after you adjusted them. That image you worked hard on and made pinpoint adjustments on is being changed and what you thought was best, Photoshop perhaps didn’t! It’s essentially a fight between what is popular and what is right, so here’s what it’s actually doing: –

Auto Tone samples the entire image and assesses the colour values individually. It goes into the Red layer, sets the darkest pixel as black, sets the lightest pixel as white, and redistributes all the other values in between the two. It then does the same for the Green layer, then finally for the Blue layer. Each colour has been dealt with alone, and the result is a combination of the three. Each now has its contrast adjusted, essentially, and the result when you’ve changed each of these layers and combined them can often be quite dramatic because we now have a totally different combination of colours.

For the sake of perspective, and for not leaving them out, here’s how Auto Contrast and Auto Color work, too: –

Auto Contrast samples the three colour values combined rather than splitting them apart, still adjusting the darkest pixel and lightest pixel, and still redistributing a bit in between. The result should, hopefully, be that any colours that needed a little extra punch now have it.

Auto Color starts off the same as Auto Tone in that it splits up the colours and sets the darkest pixel to black and the lightest pixel to white, but rather than redistributing that remainder, it makes an attempt at getting the colours right rather than just spreading it all out. What it does, instead of redistributing the colours, is it neutralises the midtones a little to correct any unwanted colour cast and emphasises that boost in contrast.

So now that we know that, we can further understand why I said, “it’s a fight between what is popular and what is right.” Take a look at what’s popular. It often has crushed tones, blacks that aren’t black, or a range of contrast so slim that in terms of “picture perfection,” it won’t be winning any contests. However, in terms of popularity, it’s scored #1. Here’s an example: –

This is a shot of mine taken practically from the hip. I was in Santa Monica with Peter Treadway and Stephanie Richer, just as the sun was dipping down, when I quickly snapped the palm trees (a rarity for me) in silhouette. The first shot is how I set the sliders, setting the image for myself at what I deemed to be pleasing and the more “popular” edit.

 

 

This second one is what happened to the image when I hit Auto Tone (Mac: CMD+SHIFT+L; Windows: CTRL+SHIFT+L, if you’re interested).

 

 

Now, I like my edit, obviously. But, what has happened with Auto Tone isn’t wrong, it’s actually a far better representation of what should be going on there in terms of the colours and tones present at that time on that day. Here are the two intermingled for a good comparison: –

 

 

So, the conclusion is this: I’ve explained Auto Tone, Auto Contrast, and Auto Color, so hopefully you understand them if you didn’t before. It’s often seen as a bit of a cop-out button, purely because it has the word “Auto” in it, suggesting that the creative flow is taken away from the creative, but it’s actually a metric ton of useful because of this: –

Set everything up the way you want it, then hit Auto Tone, Auto Contrast, Auto Color, or all three, and check out the result. What you actually end up with should be a considered version taking all you’ve seen into account, knowing what’s popular and what’s right! That’s my tip, you can have that for your back pocket, and I hope you all have a great week!

Much love

Dave

The Deadline to Enter The Lexar/KelbyOne Architectural Photo Competition is This Thursday
Just a heads up – you have until February 15, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. ET to enter.

After that, I’ll will select a winner, a runner up, and three honorable mentions. For more details and the official rules, here’s the link.

OK, pretty short and sweet (and there’s no reason not to enter — the contest is open to everybody!) Also, make sure you follow @lexarmemory on Twitter even if you don’t enter the contest – they share lots of cool images on their account.

Good luck everybody (and here’s to a great week!). :)

-Scott

P.S. One week from today I’m in San Antonio for my Full-day Lightroom seminar, and then onto Houston on Wednesday. Come out and spend the day with me – here’s the link. 

Unlocking the Power of Capture One with Clay Rasmussen
Join Clay Rasmussen to learn how to get up and running with Capture One. From live tethered capture to powerful image editing through output, Capture One is a one-stop-shop photography workflow tool. In this class Clay teaches you how to set up the workspace, organize your photos, shoot while tethered, leverage the editing suite, and prepare your files for a range of output scenarios.

This class is perfect for any photographer who wants to get started with Capture One.

Advanced Photoshop: The Psychology and Science Behind Color Grading with Viktor Fejes
Join Viktor Fejes for an advanced look at essential elements of color theory. From understanding color models and the science of RGB, to how to apply this knowledge when performing practical tasks such as color correcting and color grading. Viktor starts with the fundamentals and works up to advanced techniques used in cinema. If you want to manipulate color at will, understand the reasons why, and make your images look fantastic while doing it, then this class is for you.

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