Happy Thursday everybody: here’s what’s up:

  • The fine folks over at Westcott (the people behind the amazing Spiderlites that I use in studio, and on my Lightroom Tour) have featured my Lightroom tour in their customer newsletter (that’s it above–click to see a much larger version).The headshot you see in the newsletter was taken for a Photoshop CS3 online course I’m working on, using just one TD-5 Spiderlite and one Westcott 30″ reflector.

    To get that fashion/glamor look I used a “Clamshell” (also called “Over and Under” lighting ) set-up, with the Spiderlite TD-5 (with a large softbox attached) positioned directly in front of the model’s face, angled toward her, and positioned as close as I could get it to her face without actually being seen in the frame. Then I positioned the reflector (silver side up) just below her neck (again, just out of frame) bouncing the soft light from the overhead Spiderlite back into her face, to minimize shadows and make her eyes sparkle.

    So, think of these two (the softbox and the reflector) as a giant clam right in front of her face, and then you shoot through the little gap between the softbox and reflector. (I’m in the studio again today, and if I get a chance, I might be able to tape a quick video on how this was done).

    B&H Photo has put together a kit called “The Westcott Scott Kelby Studio Kit” based on the exact kit I use on my Lightroom Tour (coming next to Chicago, by the way), which includes 2 of the Spiderlites, two stands, two softboxes, and a pop-up background that you’ve heard me talk about here on the blog. You can find it right here.

    I’m such a big fan of Westcott’s products, and I’m really honored that they chose to feature me in their campaign. Thanks, you guys! :-)

  • Yesterday on John Nack’s blog, John posted a link to Trevor Morris’ great site, and on it he’s compiled an easy-to-use list of Photoshop CS3’s keyboard shortcuts (you can find them right here). Way to go Trevor!
  • PopPhoto.com has what could be a life-saving article on how to recover lost images if your memory card goes bad. You can find it by clicking this link.
  • Previously on this blog, I mentioned how one of my students came up and told me about Drobo, which is a super secure way of backing up your photos to a hard drive, and automatically ensuring that the images on that hard drive are safe using a very clever robotic way of not only monitoring the health of your drives, but addressing any problems for you, and alerting you on what to do next.Well, I got a Drobo system myself and hooked it up last night, and I have to tell you—so far I’m very impressed.I’ll have more on this tomorrow, but in the meantime, if you’ve got a sec, go watch their short video called “See Drobo in Action” over at Drobo.com and see if you don’t think this thing is really cool (especially for photographers who are paranoid about losing their images, which is basically all of us).

That’s it for Thursday’s news. Catch you all tomorrow!


Jeff Natrop posted a comment here on the blog yesterday about a site called “Obsidian Dawn” with lots of free Photoshop Brush Sets you can download, and I took a look at it and I have to say; it’s pretty darn cool (plus, it’s free, which is always nice). Drop by there and check it out (a sample of their most popular brush sets, Hearts, is shown above). Thanks to Jeff for turning us on to this one. :-)


Vacation’s over, and I’m back in the office today (it’s great to see all my friends again! Even though I needed the time off, I really missed my gang). Now, onto to today’s news:

  • Well, you knew it had to happen, right? My new book “The iPhone Book” (shown above) is already on press and will be in bookstores shortly. It uses the same layout, style, and theme as my book “The Digital Photography Book” so if you have that book, you’ll feel right at home. Even better: I snagged the person who is arguably the world’s leading expert on the iPhone as my co-author; Terry White (from Terry White’s Tech Blog). Terry I and split the writing duties—each writing half the book (if you’re wondering how we chose who wrote what; it was easy—-I had Terry do all the hard chapters). You can pre0rder the book from Barnes&Noble.com, Amazon.com, or wherever way-cool books are sold.
  • Our buddy, and Photoshp World Instructor Tim Grey is a guest on this week’s “Inside Digital Photo” radio Podcast, and talks about the recent 2nd annual Microsoft Pro Photo Summit, and in particular he talks about Microsoft Vista’s new HD photo format who’s goal is to provide compression without loss of quality (taking on JPEG head-to-head). Here’s the link to this week’s show, hosted by our good friend Scott Sheppard (you can listen right there on the site).
  • Photographer Alan Hess, over at his Lexar Photography blog, posted a link to a video from “The Today Show” regarding the Faith Hill retouch I mentioned last week, and you just have to watch it (click here to go to Alan’s Blog, and you can watch the video right on his site). While you’re there, click this link to check out Alan’s live concert portfolio for some great images and inspiration.
  • If you’re planning on going to the Photoshop World Conference & Expo this September, and you haven’t signed up yet, there’s only 10 days left to save $100 on a full conference pass using the “Early Bird Advance” registration, so I’d get on it.Also, one of our two hotels is already sold out (The Hotel at Mandalay Bay, which is the new upscale trendy hotel attached to the regular Mandalay Bay hotel), however we’re (all the staff and instructors) are staying at the regular Mandalay Bay hotel, and there are still rooms available, but I’d snag ’em now if you want to stay with us. Visit the Photoshop World travel page for more details.Airfares to Vegas right now are dirt cheap now, too: For example, round trip flights from Chicago to Vegas are running as low as $183 (on Continental). From Dallas they’re $244 (on USAir), and from San Francisco they’re just $130 (on United). Hope to see you there!
  • I found this on the PDN Pulse blog, and I think it’s not only a great idea, but a coming trend (as said as only an iPhone book author can. ;-)] Photographer Ceasar Lima has posted a version of his photography portfolio that is optimized to the perfect size to be viewed on an iPhone (check out this link to see how it looks, then follow the link there to see Caesar’s iPhone portfolio online. (personal note: I copied my portfolio directly onto my iPhone, so it’s easy for me to show other people when I’m right in front of them, but if you want people to see your portfolio on their iPhone, this is the ideal way).

That’s it for now folks. It’s great to be back in the saddle again, and I wish you all a wonderful Tuesday! :-)


This is from Saturday night, and what I like best about it; I didn’t pump up the color in Photoshop (in fact, I did all the processing in Lightroom, and didn’t touch the Vibrance, Saturation, or HSL controls whatsoever—the light was that great!). The only adjustments were Exposure, Shadows, and sharpening. It was taken about 30 minutes after sunset, shot on a tripod (of course), and I was aided by a dedicated squadron of mosquitoes determined to make sure I didn’t shoot for 35 minutes after sunset.

I have a couple other shots from Maine (below) from my final set, so scroll down to see those. :)