How do you move beyond using someone else's actions and presets to tone your images? It’s a lot simpler than you’d think. There are so many different ways to achieve similar results in post production, and having so many options can be extremely intimidating when you’re just learning how to edit. This is the reason that many photographers will rely on actions and presets to “color grade” and tone their images when they are first starting off.
We have all come across terribly staged stock images in our careers, and I always cringe when searching simple keywords like "business" on sites like Getty or iStock. It comes with great pleasure to find Getty Images and Fox partnered up to create one of the funniest publicity stunts in preparation for the release of Vince Vaughn's new movie "Unfinished Business." Including cast members Vince Vaughn, Tom Wilkinson, Dave Franco, and others, the shots involve fake laughs and poorly photoshopped faces in each and every photo.
Alexis Cuarezma is back again sharing the "hows" and "whys" behind one of his latest shoots: fitness portraits of IFBB bikini professional Ashley Pfaff. He has graciously included a very in-depth video where he explains how he set out to accomplish these shots, and he also provided his mood board, gear list, and lighting diagrams along with extensive commentary on the "whys" and "hows" of it all. You absolutely don't want to miss any of what he has to say! Start with the video and then dive in below!
Brand new to Photoshop? Literally got hooked up on Adobe Creative Cloud last week? If so, more than likely you're fumbling around trying to make sense of the damn thing, and are looking for some help. Online videos about Photoshop techniques number in the hundreds of thousands, and it's quite likely you've watched at least half of those by now. If you've had trouble finding video tutorials for you, the bare bones beginner, then my Beginners Basics Series videos are for you, and I welcome you to check out Lesson #2: Layer Masks.
Leonard Nimoy passed away this week at the age of 83. His long career and legacy will always be remembered in his portrayal of the iconic character "Spock" from the 1966 TV series Star Trek. With numerous film spin-offs and a resurgence to the 2009 blockbuster Star Trek as the half-emotionless Vulcan he was just as relevant today as he was 40 years ago. Though his film career was beyond fulfilling in its own right, his photography work is what will also stay with us for years to come.
I get a lot of questions about retouching. More specifically, what I do in retouching. But if there is one consistent theme in the questions I get, it's "Do you ever have any information or lessons for total beginners?" For years now, the answer has been "Not yet" but starting today, and going over the next few weeks, I will be uploading a free YouTube series on Photoshop Beginner's Basics: Retouching. These 10 videos will get you off the ground using Photoshop because, as they say, you can't run until you've learned to walk.
We all want to get better at what we do in our work, that's a given, right? Studying, reading, taking classes or doing workshops, watching videos on YouTube, and of course tireless practicing, are a few of the many ways we strive to better ourselves in our photography. The time will come however, without fail, when nearly every single one of us will post a photo to a photography group on social media or a forum, and ask for "CC" or "c&c" or simply "Any thoughts?" and await the comment storm that's coming. And usually that's when the problems start.
When working with models, photographers often expect someone with perfect skin and a great physique. In reality, this is not always the case. Some models have no idea how to get ready for a shoot, and that can be really annoying -- especially in post production, as it might add a lot of retouching time!
Sigga Ella is a photographer from Reykjavík, Iceland whose recent photo series looks to shed light on the ethical questions of where we are headed as a society with today’s ability to choose who is born based on prenatal testing for genetic disorders such as Down syndrome. She chose twenty-one people from ages 9 months to 60 years, both male and female, to show that they are more than a 21st chromosome anomaly – they’re people.
If you're planning on attending Lin and Jirsa's Ultimate Wedding Workshop 101 down in the Bahamas you will want to act fast. With only 6 seats left in this class, Pye and Justin will be covering proper exposure and how to shoot in manual, how to pose your couples, how to modify natural light, on and off camera flash, and much more. If you have seen the wedding work of Lin and Jirsa Weddings then you know Pye, Justin, and the rest of their team are at the pinnacle of the wedding genre. Their 101 workshop takes place May 13th through May 14th.
We often hear how much makeup can impact the final result of a photo shoot. It can either make or break a picture depending on its quality. A great makeup artist can save you tons of time in post while a bad one will add many hours to your job. However, working with a great makeup artist doesn't necessarily mean you will get what you need. If you cannot communicate properly, his work might not suit you, and neither will the resulting pictures. Educating yourself on some of the makeup basics can save you from this kind of situation.
Learning to find the perfect light is something that takes time and experience. But what do you do when the perfect light isn't there? Shooting in hard sunlight isn't always the most flattering or ideal situation. Don't settle for less than ideal results, bad light doesn't have to mean bad images. In this tutorial you'll learn how to defeat hard light by scrimming and lighting to completely reset your lighting conditions and take control of your shoot.
Shooting on a clean white backdrop can be one of the more complex in-studio lighting setups around. Properly exposing for full lengths while giving your models room to work can require four or more extra lights and considerable amount of setup time. While taking the time to take care of the details is important for getting the perfect image and saving yourself hours of retouching on the back end, sometimes you just want to get a nice clean background without the hours of prep.
One of those most important parts of any portrait sessions is what happens after the shoot is over. In the last part of this series I want to talk a bit about the end of your photo session, and how you can ensure you have a happy client that will not only come back for more but will tell their friends how awesome the experience was. Almost every day I get a call from someone asking me to advertise on Google. I simply reply “no thank you” as I don’t feel that Google can compete with word of mouth. As I have mentioned in first part of this series, word of mouth is one of the most powerful advertising weapons you have, with the ability to grow your business exponentially. This will be a bit different for everyone, but I think you can take this and apply it to any type of photography session you do.
Brandon Stanton and his blog Humans of New York need no introduction. In recent years, we featured many stories about the success of Stanton's unique project, and HONY is now a household name. About two weeks ago, Stanton went out to photograph new random people in the projects of Brownsville, Brooklyn. One of the people he shot was 13-year-old Vidal Chastanet. His photo and quote went viral, and made a real change to his school and the community.