Holding a huge Photo Walk, with groups of people all getting together in person, in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, well…it’s made us majorly rethink how to do a photo walk, and we think we’ve come up with a way to not only make it happen, but to make it truly awesome, and you’re invited.

This year’s idea for how we’re doing our Photo Walk is something born from some of the absolute stars of our online community, folks with big brains and even bigger hearts, who came up with this year’s plan so we can still make this year’s walk a reality.

Please take a few minutes and watch the video below which explains why we’re doing this; how we’re going to do it, how you can sign up, and why it all matters more than ever.

Thank you for taking the time to watch that — we really want you to be a part of it (and now you know what it’s so important that you do) and it’s still going to be awesome on so many levels.

Here are the details: 

Who: Everybody! You’re invited to join us — everyone is welcome!

What: A huge photo walk in 1,000+ cities around the world (here’s the link)

When: Saturday, October 3, 2020

Where: In a city near you (the cities have already been set-up and ready for you to sign up). Here’s the link to the official site.

Why: It’s a really fun event for photographers that has an important social mission (plus, this year you might win some really cool prizes, even if you don’t enter the competitions).

Have a great weekend, everybody. Go sign up go join your local Photo Walk – it’s on, baby! Whoo hoo!!!

-Scott

P.S. How we’re doing all this is VERY different this year. Don’t just go sign up — you really need to watch that video to see how and why everything has changed, but it’s still going to be great. Watch the video. It matters.

Zaria Love, location in Brooklyn, NY (Photo by Eugene Mertz)

My Journey: My Disability Become My Invincibility

On June 5th 2018 I became a different person mentally, spiritually, and physically.  In other words, I was triggered, exhausted, and just plain defeated. All of these feelings came from being diagnose with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

MS is an autoimmune disease that affects an individual’s brain (nervous system) and spine. Being struck with this kind of news lead me into a dark and depressing universe. The first thought that came to mind was “How are you still going to be a photographer and cope with this disease?” Many thoughts popped up with a mixture of confusion.

Before I was diagnosed with MS, photography became my passion, love, and sanity. Photography all started with a trip with my best friend to New York in 2014. Just being able to see New York in its true essence was an eye opener in terms of my creativity. New York became my canvas and the paint brush was my phone camera. Another canvas was Washington DC. Being around the area allowed me to work with other photographers/models and grow as a creative.

Patrick J. Pierre, location in Washington, DC (Photo by Zaria Love)

By August 2018, my disability took a heavy toll on me and the treatment I was on was ineffective. I came to a point where I refused to complete crazy tasks in my condition. Luckily, this all changed when I was scrolling down Instagram; it was like a light blub moment. I figured that I can continue with photography. My new journey started at that moment.

The first photo shoot I accomplished after being diagnosed with MS was when my siblings had to help in regards to my balance while shooting. To paint a better picture, my sister was assisting me by holding my legs and my brother was standing behind me holding my upper body. To the average bystander we all looked silly but it was very much worth it. After that shoot, I knew photography was here to stay evermore.

Wasilat, location in Maryland (Photo by Zaria Love)

Early 2019, I took a leap of faith and moved to Los Angeles, California. The move was to continue my growth in photography and to start a new chapter. Being able to work with other creative individuals on the west coast brought a whole new perspective.

For example, I was able to execute a photo shoot on Will Rogers State Beach. At first, I was very nervous but once both of us were comfortable everything began to flow and go accordingly. My walker was deep in the sand and the currents were pretty high but the photos depicted strength.

Additionally, I find it truly fascinating on how others are still willing to work with me given my condition. It’s a beautiful feeling. Although MS is my disability it did not stop me from living my life and pursuing the love and passion I have for photography.

Kudzanai, location Will Rogers State Beach, CA. (Photo by Zaria Love)

Special Thanks: I would love give a special thanks to Eugene Mertz, who is a great photographer, for inspiring me to get into photography. And a special thanks to Polly Irungu for her support and creating an amazing database for Black Women Photographers.

You can see more of Zaria’s work and keep up with her on Instagram.

#TravelTuesday is here once again and it comes with me, Dave Williams, here on ScottKelby.com to inject a dose of motivation into your day. Here’s hoping that happens as we touch on something from the world of post-process in the form of a very simple yet effective tip.

Before I get too deep into it I’m going to vent a little, corona-wise. Amongst a plethora of cancelled trips was Iceland. Plethora was definitely the correct term to use there, by the way! I was supposed to be in Iceland right now, but their quarantine rules have changed for us Brits and all many other incoming nationalities. With a two week quarantine, it simply isn’t worth going for me, having to lose out on two weeks worth of accommodation payments before being able to get out there and shoot. One thing I was supposed to do was hook up with local guide Alex Palmi, who sent me this last night.

It translates to something like, ‘my evening walk.’ So if we could all just take responsibility and wear masks, avoid crowding, and maintain hygiene, that’d be great! It’s not about whether or not Covid-19 is a conspiracy or an election tool, it’s about getting back to life as normal and reducing infection transmission (and saving lives!) I’d quite like to see the rest of the world again sometime soon.

So, the half rule…

When we work on our images it’s tricky to get the retouching balance just right. We often reach out to friends and peers for confirmation and critique, and there are lots of things we can do to make sure we haven’t over-retouched our images, such as taking a break for a short period of time and coming back to look at the image again with a fresher pair of eyes. This technique, along with others, certainly does work, but here’s an idea I’d like to share with you about how to implement changes to our images and maintain some realism.

The half rule is something I’ve been doing for a while and it’s so simple and effective. All we need to do is consider halving our slider adjustments, be that in Adobe Camera Raw, Photoshop, or Lightroom. For every slider adjustment we make, all we need to do is remember the figure beside the slider and half it, making comparisons to our original image. The reason this works so well is because we quite often over-zealously shift our sliders and end up with something too powerful and overbearing, when in fact we are simply targeting the correct adjustment just a bit too much. By breaking the adjustment in half we can often give the right amount of that edit, or at least use it to consider something somewhere in between the original and the half which sits easier with people and doesn’t look so unrealistic.

This trick works with all the sliders, but more-so with those outside of the Basic adjustments, such as Clarity, Dehaze, HSL, etc. It’s simply a case of using this method to work out whether or not the initial adjustment is too much, too intense, too unreal, and using the half rule as a point of reference to work this out. It’s not hard and fast, but it’s a brilliant back-pocket technique.

So, before I go, please all keep your fingers crossed that my next trip (Norway, mid-October) doesn’t get cancelled! I leave you with someone else’s view of Iceland last night.

Keep yourself and others safe.

Much love
Dave

There’s a tremendous amount of content created every day for photographers, and since I follow so many sites, and photographers on social, I see an awful lot of it (and create some of it), and a lot of it is people covering the same subjects and topics over and over again. If I read one more “It’s not about the gear” article I’m going to jump out the window. ;-)

This one is different. It’s called “This is the best camera you will ever own” and (a) it’s not what you think it’s about (b) the examples are fantastic, and (c) it’s one of the best articles I’ve read on photography in quite a while — it’s not the same old thing — it’s a way of thinking that is really well thought out and perfectly illustrated.

It’s from fstoppers.com (really great site), and the article itself is by Iain Stanley, and it’s one that today I think every photographer should take a moment and read. It’s that good.

Here’s a direct link to the article. My hats off to Iain, and fstoppers — this is really great stuff.

Hope that helps get your week off to a great start! Stay happy and healthy, and check back tomorrow for “Travel Tuesdays with Dave.”

Cheers,

-Scott

First, before we get to today’s post, I wanted to thank everybody who joined us for ‘The Landscape Conference” this week. What a wonderful, gracious, fun crowd to present to (over 1,400+ photographers attended live), and it was such a blast. My humble thanks to spending a few days with us — we’re very grateful and hope you all learned a lot!

Above: A stock photo used here simply as an example of the type of photo the photographer was talking about.

This question — what makes a particular photo a landscape photo versus a travel photo? — came up during my pre-conference session called “What Makes a Great Landscape Photo.” The question came from a participant who mentioned that he shoots islands in the Caribbean and Hawaii, and shooting those at dawn or dusk (like you normally would for landscape photos), doesn’t look good because without the direct sun, you don’t have that beautiful turquoise water. I mentioned during my session that I thought in this case that breaking the dawn/dusk shooting rule was totally fine because this sounds like more of a travel type photo. Later, in our closing Q&A session, he asked me to elaborate on why I felt it was a travel photo, rather than a landscape photo.

There is no official ruling body on this, so all I can give is my opinion on it, and here it is:

“When I look at an image like the island with palm trees surrounded by clear turquoise water, my first thought is, ‘I want to be there on vacation; on the beach, under an umbrella, with a piña colada, and a good book looking out at that scene.’ I’m thinking vacation, so I’m thinking travel photo. When I see a lake with a still water reflection with snow-capped mountains in the background, or a shot from Monument Valley or Yosemite, I’m thinking landscape. In short: I think the emotion or feeling a person has when viewing the image helps to determine to the viewer if it’s a landscape or a travel photo. I think of Norway as a landscape country, but at the same time, you can make wonderful travel photos there, but I leave it up to the viewer to decide which one a particular photo is.”

In the end, though — does it even matter? It’s not a negative thing if someone feels your landscape photo is a travel photo (or vice versa). What’s important is that they enjoy viewing the photo, and you enjoyed shooting it; not which category it falls into.

Hope that helps.

Thanks again to everybody who make the conference such a special event. I’m very grateful for the wonderful turnout, and for the honor of being in the company of such great instructors. It was a blast!

Have safe, happy, healthy weekend. #GoBucks, #GoTitans, and soon #rolltide!

-Scott

Milky Way Photography: Stacking & Tracking with Erik Kuna

Take your milky way photography to the next level! Join Erik Kuna in his follow up class to Demystifying Milky Way Landscape Photography, as he takes a deep dive into the practices, techniques, hardware, and software of tracking and stacking.

Tracking and stacking is all about increasing the signal and reducing the noise, and in this class you’ll learn the fundamentals of each technique, gain tips for putting them intro practice, and learn about the hardware and software used to get the job done. Be sure to watch Erik’s first class if you are new to milky way photography before moving to the next level with this one. 

In Case You Missed It: Post Processing Milky Way Landscape Photography

In this class Erik Kuna shares his Lightroom Classic and Photoshop techniques, tips, and tricks for bringing your Milky Way photos to life. Erik demonstrates each step in the process with examples taken during the first class.

You’ll learn how to nail white balance, correct distortion, adjust tonal values, add presence and color, make localized adjustments, reduce noise, composite multiple exposures together, and so much more. Erik reinforces the techniques with a start to finish workflow to bring it all home.

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