Photoshop World Recap (in Two minutes or Less)

Wow!!!! What a show!!!! Hands down—one of our best ever!!!!

As I write this I’m sitting in the Airport, waiting for my flight to Minneapolis (where I’ll be spending the day with a sold-out crowd of nearly 600 photographers tomorrow for my Light It, Shoot It, Retouch It Tour), and although I want to share so many things with you about the show, I just have a few minutes now, so here are some quick photos and thoughts from one of our best Photoshop Worlds yet!

Stole the show
Sports photography legend and the man who brought light-painting to the masses, Dave Black. What an incredible presenter. Everybody was talking about him, and at the conference wrap up, he delivered an inspirational talk that earned him a standing ovation. You had to be there.

Getting Buzz outside our industry
Adobe sneak-peaking some very cool new iPad apps that are in development. A lot of jaws were dropping.

Owned the Expo Floor
Westcott did it again, with their shootout booths. So incredibly creative (I loved the Samurai Warrior guy), and very well thought out and executed—-a huge hit with the attendees (and another reason to bring your camera to Photoshop World). Plus, they had their new brighter, badder, Spiderlite TD6s on display, and that alone created a lot of buzz, and they were doing live shoots in their own tradeshow booth as well. It was Westcott everywhere you looked.

Behaved himself this year
Vanelli. I never wanted to kill him, even for a moment. ;-)

Has gotten so popular, it’s become its own “thing.”
The poolside after-hours tweet-up. It was the best one yet!

People were stopping me in the halls to thank me for….
The Photoshop World App. I passed the credit on to Shawn Welch.

People were giddy about…
Moose Peterson’s & Joe McNally’s Photo Safari. They were over the top about it!

Pulling huge crowds on the show floor…
Wacom with their in-booth theater. They did it right, and it rocked!

Everybody wanted to know how…..
Terry White and David Ziser were shooting wirelessly to their iPads (both using different methods).

Caught everybody that hadn’t seen him before by surprise:
Jim Schmelzer. Even the class moderator in his room had to text me during the conference to tell me how much Jim was rocking his class!!!

Ended the show on a high note….
Moose Peterson’s amazing photo presentation at the end of the last day. It was really hard following the incredible presentation that Dave Black had just finished, but if there’s anybody you want up next, it was Moose.

Finding a new audience here in America that absolutely loves him!
Frank Doorhof. People dug him so much they were stopping me to ask me if I had see him present. I had. Many times. That’s why I flew him all the way over from The Netherlands. :)

They were everywhere!
iPads. I don’t think there was a photographer at Photoshop World without one.

Was never seen, even for a moment, without his iPad in hand:
RC. It completes him. ;-)

Put way too much on his plate:
Me. I hardly got to see the expo floor, visit with friends, or buy any stuff (I’m a sucker for trade shows). I’m going to vastly change my meeting/demo/class schedule for Vegas in the fall, so I can actually see more of Photoshop World. I didn’t get to see a single class, and that stinks. Sigh. :(

People kept saying “You need to give this guy more classes!”
Jeremy Cowart. I asked him to kick off the closing ceremonies as the first presenter, and he won a LOT of new fans. Follow him on twitter (@jeremycowart). It’s worth it.

A bigger hit than I expected:
Our “Photoshop Fashion” theme, and opening keynote.

What I’m not doing again in a Vegas
A balloon drop. Those who were there know exactly why. ;-)

Best Booth Theme tie-in to our overall theme
Adobe’s booth, with fashion designs in their booth, really carried on the theme brilliantly.

Coolest idea for a contest
Alumni got to complete for the best fashion show runway shot, and the winner got a new iPad 2. Of course, they had to wrestle RC for it.

Best News for NAPP
This year’s attendance was even bigger than last years. :)

Came on this year as one of our official show photographers
“Big Daddy” Don Page. He was everywhere shootin’ every thing!

My heroes of the show
Our video production team, led by Erik Kuna. These guys and gals did some amazing stuff—they shot everything, and put together some really great videos for the closing ceremonies (instead of getting any sleep). They worked their butt off, and I’m really proud of them! Way to go Juan, Jen, Meredith, Daniel, Brandon, and Adam!

Woman who makes it all look so easy (but it’s not)
Our Conference director Julie Stephenson. We all work on little pieces of the conference and expo, but she works on, and directs it all. She got a standing ovation when introduced to the crowd. She deserves it! :)

I was really surprised that…
My “Photoshop for Travel Photographers” class was so well attended. It was standing-room only in a huge room with three giant screens across. I was concerned that hardly anybody would show up. I was wrong.

This came out better than I thought…
We broadcast a live episode of the Grid from right on the Trade Show floor, with my guests David Ziser, and Rick Sammon (Matt was teaching a class at the only time slot we could tape it), and it went WAY better than I thought. I was afraid with the noise of crowds on the show floor, it would be weird, but David and Rick were so good, it didn’t matter. Our staff projected live Twitter questions on a wall of the convention center so we could see them from where we were broadcasting from. The whole thing worked WAY better than expected.

Incredibly cool thing that Peachpit Press did
The first part was—they surprised me before the start of my last class of the conference by having my book Editor, and marketing team from Peachpit present me with an award for being the #1 Photography Book Author for 2010. They also gave me an iPad 2, but better yet, they created a new scholarship in my name, and the recipient of the scholarship gets the full $5,000 tuition paid to spend a life-changing week at Jay Maisel’s hands-on workshop in New York City. That was a very classy, very cool, “very Peachpit” thing to do, and I was blown away at their generosity and commitment to learning. Now….I just have to find the next up-and-coming photographer to make use of that award. :)

Classes that I heard totally rocked it:
I heard numerous mentions for Corey Barker’s special effects class, Jeremy Cowart’s Expo Floor sessions, Matt Kloskowski’s Live Compositing class, Jim Schmelzer’s pre-conference workshop, Alan Hess’s class on Exposure and Composition, Katrin Eismann’s “From One to Many,” Terry White’s Facebook for photographers, Joe & Moose’s Photo Safari workshop, and Dave Black’s “A Guide to Sports Action photography.”

Lightroom was getting some big love!
The Lightroom sessions did really well, and we had tons of them. Lots of interest in Lightroom throughout the entire conference.

Lighting was….well….everywhere!
I did a presentation at the Manfrotto Distribution booth called “Behind the Scenes Lighting with Elinchrom and Lastolite Gear” and it was part slide presentation, and part live demo, and I had lots of great folks there. I showed all kinds of behind-the-scenes photos and examples to show how I use their gear in my studio.

We had a great live studio audience…
For our taping of Photoshop User TV on the Expo Floor. Lots of great, very patient, and very loud people who were there to see us tape the episode. We gave out TONS of goodies to the studio audience, and a few things to the folks watching back home, too.

Lots of Adobe folks at the show
Besides having a big presence on the trade show floor, Adobe was there in full force with Photoshop team members attending the show as well, including Senior Photoshop Product Manager Bryan O’Neal Hughes. I think it’s so cool that our participants get to meet face-to-face, one-on-one with the crew from Adobe.

Bert Monroy’s “Times Square” full panorama was there on display
This giant, backlit, bright, and thoroughly amazing piece drew lots of interest on the tradeshow floor from photographers and illustrators alike.

One last thing..
If you did your own coverage of the show, including posting photos from the event, or blogging about it, and posting videos on, let me know and I’ll post some links tomorrow or Friday. Thanks again to everyone who participated in Photoshop World, from the instructors to the attendees, to the staff. Together you all make it a very special event, and it’s a true honor to be a part of it.

See you in Las Vegas in September! :)

    1. Ken:

      Glad I finally met Vanelli…he was everywhere at the conference! A really funny guy. Although I feel bad for all the people that did not heed the warnings and chose to let him use their cellphones (not me!)! :D

      …And we all saw you in Orlando!!!! You were a minor celebrity there! :) Just wish I could have got one of your buttons…


  1. Thanks Scott! I’ve a feeling that I’m never gonna get the time to attend this amazing event (as it seems). But you never know, one day….

    I’m not sure if you tape every track but if that’s the case, couldn’t you put together a DVD or simliar and sell it to us who cannot attend. I guess there are many of us who wants to experience what you have done during these days. Sort of Photoshop World light! ;-)


    Bad news: I look horrible. :-(

    Had a blast this year, and I have to say that Dave Black IS the man. We had a nice conversation at the Bogen/Manfrotto booth before and after his talk there. Frank is also the man, but for slightly different reasons. I thought the balloons worked juuuust fine. ;-)

    Looking forward to next time. Thank you to you and your staff for all of the hard work you put into this every year. I don’t know how you do it.

  3. I agree with Anders. I would definitely buy a DVD of classes from the show.

    Any chance of some of the unsold (?????) copies of your new portrait retouching book being sent out to some of us that preordered it and are more-than-eagerly awaiting it’s arrival?

  4. Hey Scott,
    That does sound like a heck of a show. 5 months from now I’ll be in Vegas waiting for 2 more days to pass for the Photo Safari precon and then PSW. I sure wish I could have been in Orlando for this one too.
    One question though. I have ordered your new book from Kelby Training. Any idea when it will be shipped? Would you check on that for me and scribble your name inside before it’s sent this way please?

  5. It was one heck of a show! Met so many awesome photographers, learned so much and…this wasn’t an event for me, it was the ultimate Photography experience. Maybe I’ll join Ken in Vegas?

  6. Way to go Scott! Thanks for sharing the action with us! Looks like it was a fantastic show! Safe travel to Minneapolis and knock ’em dead!


  7. And, it’s a classic early spring day in Minneapolis for Scott’s show here. April showers bring May flowers – a great day to be inside learning good stuff. I’m off to see the wizard.
    Welcome to Minneapolis, Scott!

  8. Scott, even though I was there and loved all my classes, reading your blog makes me feel like I still missed so much. Good that I have the Conference Book to look back on. Even better that you all made it available for the iPad. The conference was wonderful indeed. Dave Black’s closing speech was very moving. Its hard to describe the feeling you have when you leave. I could not sleep on the plane or the last two nights with all the ideas running through my head. Frank Doorhof wrote an excellent recap on his blog on April 2 (a must see) so I will spare you mine here. I attended Alan and Scott’s Real World Concert Photography pre-con class and had a blast. I have photos to share on my post of yesterday.

    Thanks for all you do Scott, I’m a better photographer for it.

    If you are reading this and have not been, you should seriously consider making this trip. The Kelby team goes 90 miles an hour for 4 straight days with hardly time to eat. For me, it is well worth the investment.

  9. Scott:

    I would have replied a lot earlier, but I am still catching up on my lack of sleep from last week. What a fantastic experience I had going to PSW, one I will be talking about for months to come! From the Tweetup to the closing ceremonies, I have never learned so much in so little time (and the time just FLEW by!). Not to mention all of the laughing, too! :D

    It was great to see you @ the conference and thanks for taking the time to chat with me on a couple of occassions (Tweetup and your new book signing). I know how busy you were the entire week but it always seemed like you made the time to chat with anybody that approached you. The sign of a true gentleman!

    Wish I had more room to talk about all the great things I saw at PSW! Thanks again to you and your staff for putting on one heck of a conference. It was CAKB all the way!


    P.S. You (or Brad) posted a photo of the After Hours party last week and I was in it, taking a shot of you. I took one photo of that series I shot and gave it a B/W treatment using LR3 techniques I learned at PSW. Really happy with the results! Now I’m inspired to do some more… :D

    1. I think John Swarce summed it up perfectly!! I attended my first PSW with John and we had a blast!! I totally enjoyed meeting you and talking a little guitar talk with you at your book signing ! It is so amazing to see how many hats you wear!! I don’t know how you do it all!
      I am looking forward to attending next year to see what else you have up your sleeve!

  10. Scott, PSW was the best!!! This was my first time attending but certainly NOT my last. I had a blast and learned soooo much, thank you for a great show. Not sure if I can make it to Vegas however you couldn’t keep me away from Orlando next year. Florida would have to be covered by a glacier to keep me away…like hell froze over!!

  11. Awesome PSW. I will be a witness though to RC not holding his iPad for the span of at least an hour while he filmed Dtown TV, since he gave it to me to hold. I tried to auction it off to the highest bidder, but nobody took me up on it.

    I’ve got a recap of the Concert Precon (with more PSW coverage to come) at

  12. I laughed, I cried (with Jeremy Cowart & Dave Black!), I learned A LOT!

    Really, thanks for putting on a great show! I’m STILL trying to digest everything I saw.

    P.S. Loved the very colorful theme of the opening keynote as well—I’m just sorry those balloons didn’t make it over to where I was sitting. P-O-P! :o)

  13. Great recap, but I am a little bummed out after reading it. I was there and I missed a lot of the things you mentioned, including the closing ceremony because I had to drive back to Atlanta so I could attend Joe McNally and David Hobby’s Flashbus tour the next day in Atlanta. Killed me to miss it, but would not have gotten home until 1:00 a.m. if I hadn’t. The event was awesome, the only downside is you just can’t see everything you want to see. I am not a sports photographer, but like everyone else was still blown away by Dave Black. Thanks to you and your team for putting on a fantastic event. What I did attend (and that was a lot) was awesome!

  14. Dear Mr. Kelby:

    (that’s how you know I attended the course on Blogging.)

    Once again, I had a great time at Photoshop World. I’m impressed with the NAPP staff’s ability to adapt to changes and fix them. Having my workbook on the iPad was great…then I realized I couldn’t rip out the course evaluation and drop it in the box. No problem, the team of support folks adapted and had extra ones ready for us to use. Who knows? Maybe this will eventually be something we submit online right from an iPad or laptop in the class.

    I really enjoyed your Travel Photography and Portrait Retouching courses and came out of both with fresh ideas to put on my own images. PSW has a strong community of great folks who learn and have fun, and I’m happy to say that I left with a few more connections to talented folks.

    Since you asked about links to stuff about show coverage, here’s my first one:

    more tk.

      1. Dan,

        Great post on the concert photography workshop! You have some great images in there! Thanks for joining us… I know I’m a bit biased when it comes to saying this, but, where else can you learn concert photography like this? Only at Photoshop World!

    1. Great blog post, William! Thanks for sharing. I agree with a lot that you said about your experiences. There were some things I would care not to revisit (the conference center food is chief among them), but my overall experience was very positive! I hope to make it to Vegas 2012! I’m starting up a PSW fund today! :D


  15. What a great week. I definitely got an outsiders view into the NAPP world and let me tell anyone who reads this, I didnt meet a person who didnt love their job. Scott and his crew are just as great as they seem on TV :)

    If you missed Photoshop World Orlando, you definitely need to go to PSW Vegas. All youll be missing is the balloons, and let me tell you, thats ok :) I hope to be there again. Double cheers for a great week full of LOTS of knowledge!

    PS, Scott… I had to fly home early, is there anywhere I can see the closing address from those who presented? I heard it was one for the record books!

  16. Thanks for all the updates and it sounds like everyone had an amazing time. Cant wait for PSW Vegas this will be my second! Thanks for all you do and I do believe that Ken Toney still need to send you a check for attending! lol

  17. Scott, the pride and satisfaction that you display in your blog post about the success of this PSW is evident and justified. I didn’t attend Orlando, being a west coast resident, but I haven’t missed a Vegas PSW in years, and plan to be there this year, too. It’s a credit to you personally, and to your entire dedicated staff at NAPP, that you have such a loyal following of shooters, teachers, vendors, sponsors, publishers, and readers. I don’t know how you do it, but please don’t stop.

  18. WOW!!! sounds like I really missed out on so much at PSW this spring, but i have already put a plan in place for PSW in Vegas… nothing will keep from getting there!!! If anyone attended Jay Maisel’s classes please comment about how they were, that is one photographer’s class i will NOT miss in Vegas if he’s there. and man would i love to win that prize of taking his workshop in NY, that guy is a living legend!!!

  19. Scott, this was a great PSW, one of my favorites, and I very much agree with your comments today – you managed to capture many of the highlights that I noticed as well. Just a plug for one of the great instructors you didn’t mention, I VERY much enjoyed learning from Clint Mautner. I hope to see him again in the future!

    I have posted some photos and daily summaries of the events on my blog at

    See you in Vegas!

  20. Scott,

    This was my second time at PSW and it was another amazing time! Everything was top notch from the facilities, instructors and all the great people I was able to meet and share ideas with. I participated in the Russel brown Extreme Print Challenge, it was a blast to see my image walking down the catwalk, the only thing better would have been to win( my fishing lure image placed 2nd). I look forward to seeing you in Canada sometime soon.

    I have posted images from the event on my blog:


    Robert Faubert

  21. Despite the weather… PSW 2011 totally rocked.. the classes were varied and plentiful..
    Dave Black was phenomenal he deserved that standing ovation I think he struck a chord with everyone in the room.. Frank Doorhof’s presentations were great and entertaining. The Photo Safari was superb! Moose and Joe brought the planes to life for us- the 9 hours went way too fast. Was happy to see Moose on the expo floor presenting about wildlife though. The highlight for me was meeting Jay Maisel and listening to his presentations… PSW? Yes I am hooked.. counting down the days to the next one.. it truly is summercamp for photographers.. Thanks for putting together a social/learning/fun atmosphere for us to learn and network.

  22. William,

    RC, Matt and I were talking about your “Summer Camp for Photographers” statement today at lunch after doing The Grid! That’s a great name for PSW! It was great to see you again and I agree that Scott’s “Photoshop for Travel Photographers” was great and made me want to go back and look at all of my travel images!


  23. Dear Mr. Kelby,

    I’m not sure what conference everyone else here attended, but i was thoroughly disappointed after my first experience at PSW. There was not a single class about Photoshop essentials like the paint bucket tool, creating images with a perfect histogram, or the zigzag filter.

    I was also hoping that with the multitude of giveaways, i might win something great like a lifetime supply of flashcubes or one of those fancy new digital cameras that let you save images on a floppy disk. Instead I got stuck with an “iPad 2.” I guess the first one wasn’t very good, so they had to make a second one.

    Anyway, those are just a few of my suggestions for next time. Thanks.


  24. What’s to say, other than fantastic presentation, only wish I were there.
    I came kicking and screaming into the digital age from being a B/W film shooter of news for more years than I’ed like to admit.
    I have looked at several other instructional books written by others and can honestly state that I have seen none better than what Scott kelby produces.
    I am hoping to attain to a position of understanding so I’ll be able to utilize the tools in photo shop so that my images will reflect the very best work possible.
    There is so much more to photography than what meets the eye and with the assistance of mr. kelby, someday, I’ will get there.
    Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

  25. I would also like to know how Terry White and David Ziser were shooting wirelessly to their iPads. :) Maybe one day you guys chould share those methods on one of the shows or on your blog. :) :)

  26. omg, we had such a blast to be part of this event. it was the best show for us too, not because we have participated the first time :-)
    was great to meet you scott and hang out with you guys.
    hope to come back to either vegas or orlando someday again.
    looking forward to the psutv and dtowntv show. spotted us on two pics on this post too :-)
    greetings from munich
    carmen and ingo


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